Horse Sale/Auction Photo Tips & Requirements (Camera & Videos)


A PICTURE IS WORTH A THOUSAND WORDS!!
The photos you take will give prospective buyers their first impression of your mule/horse. If the photo is not appealing, your mule/horse may be passed over. Please take a moment and read these tips about photographing your mule/horse.  A professional photographer can be the very best investment of your time and money to get the best pictures of your animal.

CAMERA
Any camera will do, but if it has a zoom lens, excellent.

For Older Film Cameras:  35 mm film is the standard. If you are taking still photographs 200 ISO film is fine. For action shots use a higher speed film, 400 ISO.

For Digital Cameras:  Be sure to set the camera to be 3MB up to a maximum of 5MB for the best clarity.   DO NOT USE THE SMALLEST PICTURE SIZE.   

Don't take only a few photos and think you have the perfect photo. Take 30-50 and take a least 5 or 6 photos of the same pose. If you have a zoom lens use it. Stand back at least 20 feet from your mule/horse and zoom in. This will help in getting rid of the big head look. Digital cameras are great as you can view the photo right after you have taken it, but the shutter speeds on digital cameras can be extremely slow and it is easy to miss your mule/horses ears being up.

LIGHTING
Choose a sunny day and don't use a flash. Early morning or latest bright afternoon light is the best. Midday photos are terrible, too much white light and too many shadows. Always make sure the sun is BEHIND YOU as you take the picture. The sun MUST be on the horses side you are taking the picture on.  The qualities of the animal will not show up if the shadow is on the side of the animal that you are takin the picture on.  Be sure the animals shadow is directly behind the animal and not on the side you are taking the picture of!

Make sure not to get the photographers shadow onto the mule/horse.

BACKGROUND
Take a moment before you shoot your photos to look at the background. Are there junk cars in the background? Manure piles, telephone wires, other mule/horses? If so, MOVE. The BEST photos don't have much of anything in the background. Don't have a fence post extending up behind your mule/horse.  Don't compete with weeds, they hide the horses/mules legs and take the buyers eye's away from your horse/mule.  t's ALL ABOUT the sale animal and bringing the buyers attention to your animal so they will be sure to have them on a list of POTENTIAL ANIMALS TO BUY.

POSITION
The best photos are taken when you are on your knees or even with the middle of the animals body, focused toward the center of your mule/horse. If you shoot from too high up, your mule/horses look like they have no legs. Take pictures from several angles. Try to compliment your mule/horse's strong points. Having the sky in the background actually keeps the picture clear and clean and will show off the mule/horses head and other features the very best.  Shoot your photo with the hip closer, this will help make their hip larger and the head a lot more refined.  Move around to the hip, shoot some shots from this angle, it might show off the animals qualities best.

When you are shooting a Profile of your mule/horse have your handler position his feet correctly, keep them together and square with thebody and straight vertically.. Sometimes the head and neck can be turned 45 degrees. Make sure to center your mule/horse in the frame or at least don't chop off his ears, tail or legs.

Having a rider on your horse is not always the best way to show off your horse's conformation.  You can certainly have a rider showing your horse and take photo's of the activity, but we like a conformation shot with your horse saddled and bridled.

For a Three Quarter Front shot from the back, the mule/horse can stand square with his head and neck straight or turned back looking at you. Make sure his ears are up! Please try not tie your mule/horse to a tree, a fence or a trailer. Get someone to help hold the mule/horse that is capable of positioning the mule/horse correctly and getting his attention to put his ears up.The use of a mirror sometimes will work to get the animals attention.

FORMATTING AND SIZING

Make sure you resize and highlight your photos properly before uploading them to the website. Upload them at a minimum of 500kb up to 5 MB. You can resize your photos in your PhotoShop or other software program. We like to have pictures in a jpg format. It is easy to find your photos later by naming the photos with your mule/horse's name, like: DocBar.jpg or DocBarLeftside.jpg. 

THE MULE/HORSE
Make sure your mule/horse is presented in a professional manner and looks his best. Tack should be cleaned and polished and every effort should be made to have properly fitting tack. Tie your halter up tight, not sagging or hanging off his nose.  The very best is to use a bridle to show your animal as a riding animal.  If the mule/horse is being photographed undersaddle make sure the rider is sitting up straight and is presenting a pleasing picture.  

REMEMBER- TAKE LOTS OF PICTURES TO GET THE PERFECT ONE

photo tips horses mules for sale how to take good photos

VIDEO'S

TRIPOD
**A MUST** The use of a tripod IS the very best choice you make when filming a video.

Be sure to keep your picture zoomed in on your horse/mule in order to see all the qualties while riding.  Show your animals doing everything they do best, but please don't bore your audience.

Highlights Show your horse/mule ideas as follows (be sure they have done this as the buyers will expect them to do anything in the video's well):
Being caught in a large pen to show how easy it is to catch.
How good he is with his feet, ears, and walking around it.
Brushing and Saddling 
Mounting and Riding off
Riding through any obstacles, Loping and Changing Leads, Backing, Turning and Rollbacks.
Roping, Barrel Racing, Pole Bending, or any other Events
Walking through Water and Leading a pack animal.

When you get ready to produce your video, Copy 10-20 seconds of the very best highlights in the first 2-3 minutes of the video.  If you have gotten your buyers attention, then they will want to watch your full video for all things and events your consignments can do.  

Length of Video's

Maximum length of the video should be 15 minutes.


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