We first met Charlie, an ex event rider and now showjumper, at Badminton Horse Trials. She stopped by on our stand and explained she was keen to have a shoot with her team of horses, based in Wiltshire.

Charlie wanted to make some memories with one special horse – Galileo. Known as ‘Gali’. this big 17 hh German warmblood, was getting older – 19 years old when we did the shoot – and Charlie told us she wanted to ‘bottle’ some great memories of this special boy for posterity.

Horse photographer Wiltshire Jo Hansford

”Galileo has been a big part of my family for the last 19 years! He was bred by my aunt in Germany, has always stayed in the family and came to me 7 years ago, and he’s definitely special!”

“He is basically one big gentle giant, whom you just can’t help but love!!”

Over the summer we saw Charlie again at the Game Fair, the shoot was booked and a date set for September.

The day of the session arrived and as we headed to Charlie’s yard in Wiltshire, the weather was very changeable – showers one minute, then wind, then sunshine – very British!

We started the shoot with Gali, as he was the main priority, before photographing Charlie’s two other horses.

Charlie had warned us that Gali could be hot to handle, and at 17.2hh he’s a big, strong horse. Originally a talented showjumper, he also tried dressage in his later years, due to an injury. After some stable shots of Galileo alone and with Charlie, then we headed out and about around the yard location – thankfully we got some shots but Gali then pretty much danced his way up and down the lane so we had to keep it short!

Next up to be photographed was ‘Wilma’, Charlie’s beautiful 10 year old Irish Sports horse mare; followed by Ellie, her English bay warmblood, who’s 16 years old.

Horse photographer Wiltshire Jo Hansford
Horse photographer Wiltshire Jo Hansford
Horse photographer Wiltshire Jo Hansford
Horse photographer Wiltshire Jo Hansford

As we headed into the evening, we were excited when we had the most glorious, vibrant evening sky! We headed out to the fields with armed with some of our lighting, to illuminate Charlie and Wilma in the landscape – the perfect end to a perfect photoshoot!

Thanks for having us Charlie, we loved capturing you with Gali, Wilma and Ellie, such a fantastic day!

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