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Bob Langrish’s World of Horses


Review by Nancy Brannon

Master photographer Bob Langrish has spent much of his 40-year career photographing some of the most exceptional horses in the world. In his travels from lush jungles to snow covered pastures, his stunning images capture horses in their natural beauty and surroundings. This coffee-table photo book is a collection of his images of horse breeds from all over the world – sleek Arabians, dramatic Friesians, shaggy Exmoor ponies, Mustangs, and the rare Pottok (a beautiful, butt-view shot on page 100).

The foreword by George Morris is accompanied by an image of George sailing over a water jump in his classic form that he still rides and teaches.

Jane Holderness-Roddam provides commentary throughout the book to accompany the photos, ranging from anecdotes and funny stories to serious, factual explanations. She relates numerous stories of how Langrish was able to capture some of these images despite the hazards and unforeseen obstacles that arose during photo shoots. She also provides a bit of photography information about how Langrish obtained some of his photos.

Langrish has traveled to virtually every country and continent where horses and ponies exist. Along the way, he met many amazing owners and stewards of these magnificent horses – from kings and sheiks to some of the poorest folk who rely on horses for their survival.

The book of photos is organized by geographic areas: beaches and the seaside; fields and pastures; deserts, savannahs, and dry plains; mountains and high plateaus; plains and open spaces; rivers, lakes and marshes; forests, jungles and woods; nature in the snow.

Some of my favorite photos are: a heavy misty morning, silhouette photo of a cowboy on a Quarter Horse farm in Texas; photos of a young Morgan foal frolicking in a field; a two-page spread of a dappled grey Arabian and another of an Arabian galloping with all four feet off the ground; three grey Arabians running through a meadow in Oregon; a Pinto trick horse, who is trained to rear on command, striking a rearing pose at the top of a precipice; a two-page spread of three fine Friesians; and a two-page spread of a galloping Palomino Lucitano. Another photo shows a Palomino Tennessee Walking Horse splashing through the water in Tennessee. A striking pair of trotting Knabstruppers look like the Dalmatians of the horse world.

The last chapter is most appropriate for winter and the holiday season, with so many beautiful photos of horses playing in the snow – and one of a horse nuzzling a cat on the fence post. Maybe the best is a front-view photo of a Mini looking like a “wide load” hairy beastie, with snow on its muzzle (p. 195). You can’t beat cute!

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