Photographer, John Lechner first attended the Sydney International Horse Trials as a spectator in 2001. Since then, John has captured so many special moments on behalf of the Australian Eventing community.
Many of you will know John from his days an an eventer,TD, equestrian photographer and journalist. John now solely focuses on building his arts business. John has since exhibited his works in Australia, New York and Philadelphia.
Today, John has kindly agreed to be our Guest Editor. We asked John to share his favourite photos from covering the Sydney International Horse Trials. OVER TO YOU JOHN…
“Choosing three of my favourite photos from the Sydney Three Day Event was a challenge. I first came to the Syd3DE in 2001 as a spectator and until 2014 I think I missed being there once or twice .
It is one of my favourite events being my home town international competition and during the 14 odd years I have been at Syd3DE there are few roles I haven’t been involved in, in the early days they used to mix the 3DE with the ODE so I managed to ride at the event, although only at intro level. My first year as a volunteer I remember being a fence judge and having the trauma of losing a horse at my fence.
That day I was also taking photos of each horse coming over my fence (with the TDs permission). In the end it was my photos that helped the crisis management team understand what had happened at the fence.
Over time I progressed to be a TD and was lucky enough to be work with some amazing people from around the world, many of whom I now call friends. Working with the riders of all levels has also been great fun and while there have been some interesting moments.
When I looked at choosing my favourite photos I went straight to my favourite year which was 2013. At the time I was exclusively working with An Eventful Life as a photographer. Personally I enjoyed the singular task, shooting only.
My first favourite shot (pictured above) is one that speaks to me as pure eventing. John Twomey, the smiling assassin, on XC flying and smiling. The two factors I love so much about this shot is the massive grin on John’s face, he is obviously having a great time. Also all four feet of his pony – Wade Equine Highly Recommended – are in the air, flying.
John & Highly Recommended end up third in CIC2* on the weekend behing Tim Boland who had the quinella on Umunga and Mercator Du Ry.
Over the weekend I really pushed myself to try and capture some WOW. I headed to the water pond and shooting into the sun aiming to get something awesome. Alex Townsend on her new mount at the time, Clayton Fredericks former mount Bendigo coming through the water.
To focus the eye I processed this shot as a black and white. The light and contrast with the water spray draw you in to the action.
Finally, is my favourite photo of the weekend. At the time I wasn’t able to publish the photo, Deb from AEL wasn’t keen on the shot. But Emma Scott and I had a good laugh about it at the time. The full sequence is pretty amazing it really shows how hard Mustang worked to keep Emma safe. He did a great job to land on his feet but sadly Emma landed on her butt in the water.
I am currently in a hiatus away from eventing as I focus on building my own business. Today I only shoot landscapes and travel Australia (like the photo above) and the world capturing breathtaking moments and magical place.
Just recently I had a 3am start to capture moon rise and sun rise on the same morning. This artwork I have titled Pastel Moon. It is a moment between moon and sun rise where the light was just unbelievable, this is why I love my job.”
John Lechner Traveller | Artist | Photographer
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Many thanks to John for being our Guest Editor and for sharing these beautiful images.