deCroce blog of photography

Polo Photography

Dabbling In Action Polo Photography

polo photography

Polo photography of Matise training young horse in the coral.


This polo photography project came around the corner. I was actually commissioned to shoot an industrial operation near Houston Texas. Capturing the hard sweat of workers in the south Texas heat for four days was a fun gig. I waited for the perfect dusk light, woke up early for industrial dawn photography, and stayed up late for night shots under the moon.

Then, on the fifth day, my industrial client asked if I would photograph their neighbor – the polo club. They wanted to do something nice as compensation for the inconvenience and noise. My images of polo photography were a gift to The Spencer Farm from Triangle Resources.

Now this was off-season for Texas polo photography. There were no guests at the polo club farm. But the manager and summer caretaker Matise and I quickly developed a friendship. The pictures posted here are of Matise and one of the young horses he was training.

Polo photography at training.


In case readers of this blog haven’t noticed, stories posted here are designed to increase web traffic. That’s why they’re so dull. Each blog post, includes a certain key-word-phrase which is used repeatedly. The technique is part of an endeavor called “search engine optimization”  or SEO.

The result of writing for SEO is twofold:

Jamming in a key word over and over makes the writing sound forced and stilted. In this post, the key word is … (you guessed it) – polo photography. And my task is to repeat “polo photography” often enough that bots and crawlers catch the phrase polo photography. Then, when someone somewhere types “polo photography” in the search box, my site might pop up on the first page – polo photography, polo photography, polo photography.

The other goal in a blog story is content. The writer should demonstrate knowledgeability about the subject while simultaneously creating an interesting article.


Well the truth is that I know very little about polo photography. The chance of getting any work in polo photography is remote. Plus, I’m too lazy to research it right now. So instead, I’ll tell readers two horse stories from my youth.

I learned to ride horses on my aunt’s farm in Montana. First on sneaky Queenie who knew how to get rid of city-kid riders with sharp turns. And later with Ronnie’s appaloosa – Scooter. One summer I rode Scooter so many times that I thought he was mine. I’d always ride the same course along the irrigation ditch to the end of the alfalfa field. Then galloping through trees making the same close cut turns each time. Our ride ended with a gallop back to the farm house.

On the last summer day before I had to go home I took Scooter out for a ride. We rode with no saddle as usual and this time we rode with no bridle either – no saddle, no bridle, not even a halter. And for some reason I decided to kick off my boots.

Scooter amazed me but I wasn’t surprised at all. He rode the course just as we had done so many times before. Running at full speed, I felt Scooter’s legs under my body …as if his legs were my own.



Action polo photography


This is the spot where I was introduced to chigger bugs. Lying on my belly for polo photography, I was an easy target. The nasty larva bite human tissue leaving behind itching welts that last for weeks.


My second horse-love was Annie. In my 19th year, hitchhiking my way to Australia, I wound up in Spokane, Washington instead. The job I landed that summer was running a horse riding stable on the outskirts of town. With the World Expo happening in Spokane, there was no shortage of tourists who wanted to ride the rim rock and get a taste of the old west.

Now Annie was not the kind of horse you’d expect to find at a renting stable. Wherever Annie went, she pranced like she was leading a parade. A big bay mare, (maybe 16 hands), she was always a little spooked. I was Annie’s only rider that summer as we both enjoyed giving a show for the tourists. I’d start one group on the trail, then race back to the stable at full speed through the trees. Zigzagging as we came down the hill, Annie would stop on a dime in front of the new group. I’d spread my legs wide as I jumped over her head, land on my feet (most of the time) and say “Now who’s next?”

Our little circus act always caught the tourists off guard, but they liked it. A few times we were even applauded.

 Action polo photography

Here’s a polo photography image that shows the close proximity of the industrial drilling rig adjacent to the Spencer Farms Polo Club in Texas.

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