One of Australia’s top equestrian photographers, MICHELLE TERLATO travels the world capturing equestrian athletes in action. Each month she shares one of her favourite shots.
Rider: Julia Hargreaves Lynch
Horse: Copabella Vegas
Event: 2019 Longines Global Champions Tour
Location: Stadio dei Marmi, Rome
Camera & Settings: Canon 7D Mark II, 70-200mm, ISO 200 f 4.5 1/1000 sec
Challenges: Unfortunately, we could not shoot on the side of the arena that was the best possible position in relation to the sun and the jumps. It was the VIP area and the media had to stay away! However, the arena for the Rome leg of the Longines Global Champions Tour was not too big, and even though this combination were at the furthest point away from me, it was possible to use the 70-200mm lens and get close enough. It was a very bright summer’s day so the ISO was low, and although this jump was in the shade there was still plenty of natural light.
Why this shot is special: This horse and rider are simply ‘camera candy’ and combined with the stunning array of show jumps in the Rome GCT, I captured several lovely images of them. But I feel this is the best as it encompasses the proximity of the VIP area behind the arena, and the lovely oxer jump with its copy of the Bocca della Verità (the Mouth of Truth, one of Rome’s famous landmarks). The blue and mauve hydrangeas add a beautiful pop of colour that ties in wonderfully with the blue apparel Julia is wearing, and of course this beautiful horse.
Sadly, when Copabella Vegas was in retirement an old injury resurfaced. Due to the detrimental effect this had on his quality of life, there was no alternative but to euthanise him. Julia had owned him for his whole life, and at only 17-years-old, he died far too young. And this sad story makes me appreciate this beautiful image even more. I’m so glad that riders can look back on images like these, which hopefully give them lovely memories to cherish forever.