Art Inspirations - Cutting

Cutting is the sport of separating a single cow from a herd by a cowboy on horseback.

This is based on the need to separate a cow on a ranch for branding or other reasons.

This is no easy task since the cow will want to stay with the herd and requires a very

good relationship between the rider and his horse. The rider and the horse need to be

able to anticipate what the cow will do and be able to turn instantly to block the cow.

I took a photography class from famed Western photographer Jay Dusard who taught that

a good photograph of cutting should show the action with both the horse and rider looking

at the cow and turning with it as opposed to responding late and not turning with the cow.

This makes it difficult for the photographer trying to anticipate not only what the cow

will be doing but also what the cowboy and horse will be doing as well as keeping in

mind composition

This photo was taken in Tucson, Arizona and the rider breeds and trains Arabian horses

for cutting and his horse in this photo took the championship in the non-pro class at the

2012 Scottsdale Horse Show. If you are interested in fine horses, his web site is

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Donald Knight -

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