photographing Breyer horses in the wild…

On the Sassafras River MD, on a small beach out of Turner’s Creek Landing, we pulled up our kayaks…

and this happened…


There was the Attack of the Water Monster… uh… oops…


…and dragons…


and larger than life lotus…

DSCN3702 b


The Sassafras is a tidal freshwater tributary of the Chesapeake Bay. It is surrounded by woods, sandy bluffs, sand beaches. Lots of wildlife including bald eagles, osprey, black and turkey vultures, seabirds. American lotus bloom in the shallows from mid July to mid August. This beach had a stand of Phragmites (“a genus of four species of large perennial grasses found in wetlands throughout temperate and tropical regions of the world, The non-native Phragmites occurs throughout the eastern half of the U.S. and in Colorado.”).

The lotus is North America’s largest wildflower, and the lily pads are about the size of a tire. Some float on the water’s surface, some rise above it, but not quite as high as a low camera angle makes it appear to be.

The Breyer horse is a Traditional 1/9 scale:

The Smoky mold was introduced in 1981 and is named for the main equine character in the book Smoky the Cow Horse by Will James. It has the round “Breyer Molding Co.” mold stamp, and some may also have the “B” stamp. Like its namesake, the mold also has a Rocking R brand on the near shoulder. It was sculpted by Chris Hess and is Breyer mold #69.

He normally looks like this, a grulla with four white stockings and blaze and flying tail:

Mine lost his tail and it was replaced with hair from (probably) my half Arab Saraf.

The Lord of the Rings action figure of Legolas fits him well, standing in for Arod (“smaller, but restive and fiery”), if you assume the Elf is riding a large horse, as they did in the films.

Toothless from How to Train Your Dragon came in these lovely “baby dragon” versions, they are quite photogenic, though very dark or very light subjects are harder to photograph.

Flung sand or water creates the effect of movement. Use a camera mode that captures multiple images of motion. Keep your camera low, making the characters look life sized.


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