Where I am
I live in the East Midlands of England, in our smallest county, Rutland. Home is about 15 mins drive from Burghley and in the heart of what we call the Shire fox hunting country.
Tell us a little about you, what is your background & where do you come from?
I come from an equestrian family. My Grandmother raced point-to-point horses, team chased and hunted, my uncles raced under rules and hunted and my mother hunted.
I do ride but prefer to keep my feet on the ground.
I have taken pictures seriously since I was at boarding school in the early 80s, starting with school sport and landscapes. At university I sold my first images and began to get quite into photo-journalism, but only started taking photos of horses in 2007.
When did you take your first picture?
What kind of camera do you use?
Nikon D3 and D300
If you could pick any camera (regardless of price) what would it be?
You photograph horses in a variety of environments – where is your favorite place to photograph them?
Tricky one! In some ways I love to capture them in their home environment but I think my favourite would have to be when they are in competition and clearly loving it.
Who are your main influences?
I’m self-taught and have my own style so I don’t really know. I share ideas with other pros all the time so I think we all learn from each other really.
There isn’t a single equestrian photographer that I would say that I aspire to but there are plenty I have learned from.
Are you an animal lover or a photography nut first?
I’ve always had animals at home, dogs mostly, so I suppose the former but it’s close!
Your photograph more than just horses, what is your favorite subject?
Horses are my favourite but I also love the rare occasions I get to photograph racing yachts in action, somewhere warm!
Do you (or did you) have an animal that is the muse behind your work?
Where were you the most inspired, but without a camera?
Touch Wood, this hasn’t really happened!
What effect do you think the Internet will have on art and photography?
I think it is a great vehicle for spreading one’s photography more easily.
In the past, getting people on the other side of the world to see your work was difficult, now it’s only an email away!
Has it had an effect on yours?
Definitely. My work is now seen by many more people than it used to be and that is creating some interesting new work. It’s also highlighting the difference in techniques used around the world, especially with equestrian photos.
Which one is your personal favorite image?
I’ve tried to answer this one honestly but I keep changing my answer. I think, probably, my recent favourite would have to be my shot of Oliver Townend and Flint Curtis at Badminton. I managed to catch all six legs in the air but what I love about it are the facial expressions: Oliver’s look toward Flint says “You’re rather good” and Flint’s says ” Yup, I know!”.
What else are you passionate about?
The sports I play (hockey, tennis, cricket, sailing), cooking, wine.
Working on anything new?
I’m working on some new editorial work and some new ideas for setting up remote cameras during competitions to produce a completely “new” angle on things.
More to Come
Thanks to Nico for answering the interview and sharing his work. Be sure to check out his photography website periodically for updates about is latest work.
Also stay tuned for more interviews with horse artists and photographers. Are you a horse artist or do you know an equine artist you’d like to see featured? Add your name and website in the comments below or drop me a note to get involved.