I first met Daniel when his girlfriend, Becky, had a shoot with me earlier in the year. Daniel was such a brilliant help on that shoot in so many ways and it was a particularly fun shoot as a result.  When the time came for a shoot for Daniel too I was so pleased that Becky chose me to return and see them again.  So off into Dorset I went one Friday to see him and his lovely mare, Gypsy Legend.

♥︎ ♘ ♥︎

Gypsy, a 10 year old Thoroughbred mare, came to Daniel just over a year ago.  This lovely little mare was bred in Ireland and was the 3rd of 4 really well bred foals from her dam. She went on to be owned and raced as a 2 year old by one of the UK’s leading racehorse owners.   Sadly racing didn’t turn out to be Gypsy’s true destination and she left the sport to become a riding horse.  A few years forward and after a few homes Gypsy found herself with Dan.  Over that first winter Dan and Becky struggled to keep weight on the mare. It didn’t matter how much food they pumped into her she just couldn’t keep the weight on.  It was also clear to them both that she was pretty unhappy about stable life in general.  So, the decision was made to stop doing what is most would carry on doing and they decided she could live out.

Working on the theory that so long as she was warm and happy they’d keep her fit from the field.   The difference was dramatic.  The mare relaxed and the weight started to go on, and stay on. She was never short of shelter or warm rugs and they said she thrived.  Looking at her today it’s so clear that the decision Dan and Becky made was the perfect choice for Gypsy.  It might not work for every Thoroughbred out there but it certainly does for this mare.  Finding the key to what makes this mare tick has made everyone’s life that much happier and easier.

One thing I learnt about this pair the last time I met is that they REALLY know how to turn a horse out to look it’s best. True to form Gypsy was immaculate and was kept immaculate during our session and it shows in the pictures.  At this time of year it can be really hard to keep a nice sheen on a coat that’s starting to shed, but she still has her dapples and there’s a lovely natural sheen to her coat.

Dan didn’t want a shoot just of pictures of Gypsy and him together, he was keen to blend pictures of her at liberty in her field with some black background images along with just a few lifestyle versions of them together.  I love shoots like this as everyone gets to relax and play along the way too.

Gypsy had a fantastic time in the field, reverting back to her racing days showing a huge turn of foot on a few occasions!

During a little bit of a break whilst Gypsy had a bite of grass to relax I was brought up to speed with Dan’s progress as he makes his way into competitive life with the mare.  This is the first horse Dan has competed on and has been really enjoying the experience, which is just perfect.  They are proving to be a great partnership as they’ve been gaining some great results in the few shows they’ve taken part in, even winning some dressage together!  They are due to take part in their very first One Day Event now too, so fingers crossed for a happy and safe first time out in this discipline!  Whatever happens though I know this pairing will continue to enjoy doing what they do, with no pressure to turn in the results.  They are out for fun and if they gain a placing along the way then that’s the icing on the cake…

… as it should be!

Once again I had so much fun with Dan and Becky, they are just fabulous to be around and the care and attention they put into their little herd is fantastic.  Little did I know that by the end of that weekend Becky would no longer be his girlfriend…

… but his fiancée!


Have a fabulous week ahead…

Rachel x


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