There are four Agricultural shows on my calendar at which I aim to capture as many aspects as one person can, with four regulars on the calendar - the New Forest, Ellingham, Dorset County, and Romsey. I try to cover aspects of shows which do not already have blanket coverage. This often means outside the main ring, concentrating on the smaller rings and obscure corners of the show
I prefer to cover the smaller countryside rings to capture something different because so many photographers concentrate on the main ring.
As I step into the bustling world of an agricultural show, the lively atmosphere immediately engulfs me. The earthy aroma of livestock creates a sensory symphony that sets the stage for my photographic exploration. The vibrant tapestry of colors spreads before me as I survey the sprawling exhibition grounds.
Camera firmly in my hands, I begin my journey through the diverse array of stalls, some showing associated activities, such as metalworking, displays of vintage agricultural equipment, or how steam traction engines were used to power agricultural work. The hum of conversations, punctuated by bursts of laughter and exclamations of delight, provided a soundtrack to my visual adventure.
Moving further into the heart of the show, I find myself surrounded by the captivating presence of farm animals. Majestic horses exuded elegance as they passed by to enter the ring, maybe pulling a coach evoking a bygone era or a trade vehicle. The horse reigned supreme for trade work until the internal combustion engine replaced them in the early part of the 20th century. My favourite is the Heavy Horse, the gentle giant of the horse world, and the stunning display of the Musical Drive, which, until recently, was unique to the New Forest Show.
Cows, with their gentle eyes and serene demeanor, stand patiently while their farmers lovingly prepare them for competition. Pigs oink playfully, their pink skin contrasting with the mud that adorns their snouts. Many other animals within the small animal tent.
Other displays include terrier racing, ferret facing, the New Forest Axemen, and the Dancing sheep, with a display of sheep shearing at the New Forest Show.
Always something happening in the larger rings, displays of horsemanship which include showjumping, scurry racing - fast and furious, even more so when heavy horses are used, and stunt riding, which has included the Devil's Horsemen, and Atkinson's Action Horses. I have nothing but admiration for those performing these stunts, putting their faith in their horses.
As the sun casts its warm golden rays, casting a magical glow over the scene, I seek out moments that capture the essence of this agricultural marvel.
With every click, I endeavour to encapsulate the spirit of this agricultural show, preserving its sights and emotions in frozen moments. Whether it is the gentle curve of a leaf or the bond between rider and their loyal horse, I aim to immortalize the beauty that thrives within the agricultural world.
As the day draws to a close, with my memory card brimming with a tapestry of captivating images, I cannot help but feel a profound appreciation for the resilience, passion, and harmony that pervades these agricultural shows. With a grateful heart and a camera full of stories, I leave the vibrant grounds, eager to share the tales that unfold in this captivating celebration of rural life.
Panorama of a lineup of Heavy Horses, New Forest Show after the musical drive
New Forest County Show
2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012
Ellingham and Ringwood Show
2018 2017 2016 2015 2014
Dorset County Show
2016 General, Heavy Horses, Red Devils, Scurry Racing
2015 Showjumping, White Helmets, Scurry Racing
2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012
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