The first semester in Art School was all about the history of photography. Eadweard Muybridge was a key component in understanding our roots and how capturing of swift movement on screen (Sallie Gardner at a Gallop, 1878) actually came into being. Horses were his first subject and he concentrated on the galloping movement to understand speed and momentum. I’d always wondered why horses and not a walking man or any other animal could become his inspiration.
My confusions were cleared the day I saw these colossal beasts up, close and personal at the President’s Polo Cup Exhibition Match in New Delhi in November. The fluidity in the movement of these gentle giants could easily be compared to running your hands through still waters. It’s difficult to imagine that horses can boast about tranquil displacement after weighing around 500 kgs and galloping at 40 kmph. The earth shook when they bolted and it was such a joy to capture them at their prime.