Last week I travelled over to a private yard in Carshalton, to meet with Clementine and her gang of four-legged friends. The main focus for our shoot was her two horses, Flicka and Irish. But whilst I was there, some of the other horses had head shots, too and the dogs also got involved. (It was photobombers galore! Lol!)
Flicka is the little coloured pony and she is Clem’s twenty-one year-old Thoroughbred cross. These two have been together for fifteen years, every since Flicka came over from the Isle of White. Although she is now mostly retired, she was a little speed demon in her day.
Flicka and Clem have had a lot of fun together, including playing horseball, which she was apparently awesome at, and galloping around the countryside. Clem says that Flicka used to dump her on her head quite a bit, but she also taught her so much. She has finally grown up and quietened down, these days, enough that Clem’s one year-old niece can have the odd plod around, in her basket saddle.
Clem’s other horse is Irish. Yes, as in he is from Ireland, but that’s also his name. Irish is a fifteen year-old Irish Sports Horse. He’s been with Clem for ten years. He arrived at the yard as part of a group of horses for sale and was ‘the Irish one’, so that was that. He became Irish.
Clementine tells me that he is a terrible worrier and is an absolute nightmare to keep weight on. He’s also incredibly accident prone and if there is trouble to get into or an injury to be had, Irish will be first in line. Clem says that he is out of work more than he is in work, but is the sweetest person and doesn’t have a bad bone in his body. So Clem and her family put up with his ailments and just take him as he is, muddling through and keeping their fingers crossed for the days he isn’t on his sick bed and can enjoy hacking out on the buckle.
I have to also mention all of the dogs, because they were so much fun and gave me the best welcome and send off, at the gate. There’s Sprout, Clem’s Lurcher, who is Irish’s leggy, accident prone, scaredy-cat equivalent, in canine form. Then there is Minnie, the Jack Russell cross Whippet, Flo, the Jack Russell and Sid, the Spaniel. What a great bunch of characters!
Thank you to Clem for having me. Her lovely mum and their friend for helping hold ponies, dogs and get ears forward. And to the whole furry family, for making this shoot such a pleasure.
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