From lead-liners to ambitious teens, saintly horses to supportive trainers, Elena Maas captures the schooling show experience beautifully through her camera lens.
Elena Maas is a talented Georgia-based photographer and graphic designer whose work she has generously shared with Nation Media in the past. (You can view her most recent collection, a stunning foxhunting photo essay, here.
Today she returns with an assortment of candid photos taken at Wills Park Equestrian Center, a venue in Alpharetta, Georgia that hosts a range of competitions catering to riders of all age and experience levels.
In addition to photos Elena paints the sensory experience in words. She writes:
The sun was shining, the sky was blue, the air was autumn fresh and the equestrian’s adrenaline at Wills Park Equestrian Center was at an all-time high. Dressed in beige breeches, dark coats and shiny boots, they all were mounted atop their meticulously groomed steeds. Spectators were able to see a pretty large variety of horses all the way from small, cuddly teddy bear-like ponies to beautiful Gypsy Vanners.
Riders and horses were waiting to enter the arena in order to show their hunter-jumper skills from simply walking, trotting, cantering to jumping over obstacles. The ladies from Take Flight Academy were among these equestrians and they are a group of terrific girls who support and cheer for each other.
It is always a privilege to be around these ladies and their horses since they greet you with a warm smile and a hug and, very patiently, answer every question I might have. The days are long but even the youngest of the bunch sit, watch and cheer until the sun goes down and the last girl has proven her skill in the arena.