Meet Ruby and her beautiful bay ex-racer, Rex. When I arrived, Rex was stood waiting after he'd been hot-clothed. Ruby was just applying a coat of hoof oil as I walked around the corner. I'd already passed her partner, Ben on my way in with their very adorable little dog!
Ruby popped on her first outfit whilst we chatted about Rex - he is her 13th ex-racer, he was both a hurdler and raced on the flat. He had numerous placings, but he was a bit inconsistent. Together they've enjoyed a bit of everything, from a spot of dressage, to flying up the gallops. Sadly, he's had a bit of a tough year with colic at the start and some soundness issues. Ruby wanted some lovely shots, to capture the bond between her and Rex, as she may have a difficult decision round the corner this winter.
"He's an overgrown cheeky pony, who only gets away with his behaviour, because he's handsome!"
We all headed down to the driveway and across the road to the gorgeous avenue of trees between the fields. The leaves were just starting to turn, the dappled light filtering through beautifully. We began the shoot with some family shots - everyone was so easy to work with, and very quickly we had everyone in place, looking the right way!
Ben then took on the job of being chief "ear-getter-forward-er" waving around various buckets, dragging some signs along the floor and rattling buckets of treats. Maya found the whole thing very exciting, which too gave something for Rex to look at!
Maya was absolutely adorable - the latest addition to the family was just 6 months old. She was rescued from Cyrus and flew over to England with two other siblings. Ruby and Ben picked her up from Gatwick and soon fitted in. She was a very cheeky, lovable dog who jumped straight in to my lap as soon as I arrived!
The bond between the two of them was so lovely, Rex was constantly looking to Ruby, and she had such a lovely way with him, even when he did get a little excitable! Autumn, like mine, is Ruby's favourite time of year. I loved her tweed jacket, paired perfectly with Ben's. Despite telling herself, perhaps it was time to look at something other then a thoroughbred, after a rotational fall off a previous horse, she fell in love with Rex.
We then headed over to the little brick wall at the entrance to the yard. The wall has been a "go-to" place whenever I photograph at this yard, the light this morning was particularly gorgeous, glistening through the trees. Rex was starting to get a little agitated by the other horses on the yard, so we headed back to let him have a chill in his stable, whilst Ruby swapped outfits. Ruby also decided it would be a good moment to give Rex a quick lunge, just to get the cheekiness out of him! It was definitely a good call as he showed off some very athletic moves!
There was an area of trees just by the car park, in all of my visits to Cullinghood, I hadn't ever noticed how beautiful this cluster of trees was. The light was falling so beautifully around, the vast boughs of the trees framing Rex and Ruby so perfectly; with the autumn colours appearing above.
Concluding the shoot, of course was the black background photographs! Rex looks so handsome in these and posed so well as he watched the other horses being worked in the school! Thank you, Ruby, so much for having me! It was such a lovely morning!