Mary Cornelius Photography | Blog

Adventures of a Shuttermonkee    

On Equine Photography, Art and Travels with a good dose of meaningless babble

15% off Holiday Print Sale!

December 05, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

  Just in time for the Holidays, A Print Sale 

Receive 15% off on any prints and products from my Dressage shows and Events, Breed inspections and Farm Call galleries. Sale begins Nov 29 ends Dec 20, 2017.   Use coupon STOCKINGSTUFFER at check out. 


September in the Life of an Equine Photographer

October 06, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

ODS17-6931ODS17-6931 It was the long hot summer that rolled into September still hot and dry from months without any rain with the added atmosphere of smoke throughout Oregon and Washington from several rather horrendous fires.  As my friend Sharon Fibelkorn rolled into town from S CA to help me photograph the ODS Championships at the beautiful DevonWood Eq Center, we found ourselves giving up any plans for running around the city, prefering instead to hide in the house away from the smoke and watch the news hoping to hear that the fire fighters could get the fires under control. The dressage show going on at all started to come into question and we came up with a plan B just in case (the beach)   At the last minute, the winds shifted and the air cleared and all was a go for the show.  We had a great response from the competitors and worked hard photographing them over the next 4 days at the show.

  On Monday after the show, as I set to work sorting out the business end of the weekend and gearing up for the image editing that was in front of me, Sharon headed south back towards home as she had her next gig scheduled in just a few short days. Our brief girl party was over.  

After two days of editing at the computer, on Wednesday it was time to be at Sonnenberg farm bright and early to photograph the KWPN Keuring.  Another great day with beautiful horses,  perfect September weather and impeccable grounds

AHHA17-3772AHHA17-3772 . KWPN17-1794KWPN17-1794  

Back home for a few more days of editing until the following Saturday  Wild Turkey Farm to photograph the Holsteiner Approvals. Yet another beautiful day, lovely grounds and fancy horses.  No sooner did I get those images downloaded, but it was time to head to Rocking B Ranch on Sunday morning for the Hanoverian Inspection.   The weather was about to cloud up and threaten rain, so the day got dark at bit early.  We were indoors so as the clouds rolled in and the day faded, I struggled a bit to find the light, but the preparations for the event were nicely done, the horses beautifully turned out and the day, albeit long, was a success. 

So there I was with a pile of images from 4 different events and several people all needing images and questions answered.  I worked as hard and fast as I had the energy for and managed to at least get all of the proof galleries made for viewing before I had to catch a plane on Wednesday to Sacramento to help Terri Miller photograph the USDF Region 7 Championships/CDS 50th Annual show at Rancho Murieta.   4 days of dressage show in the warm, bright sunny clime of Central CA.    This show was different for me, I was able to turn over my images and let Terri handle all the rest.  Its not a bad way to go, I tell ya.   

I flew back home on Monday Sept 25th sore and tired, with the pile of work that I had left behind the week prior, patiently and some not so patiently waiting for me to tackle. 

I look back on this past month with some amazement and not a small measure of pride that I got through it as I had given up my usual dressage shows that I would shoot through the year and I hadn't developed the level of fitness for the work that I usually have by this time of year. But I am fit for it now.     Some scheduled portrait sessions should finish up the year and I can chance sending in my cameras for cleaning and their annual physicals.  Now to plan what exotic place I might like to travel to next year....  


Oregon Dressage Society Championship Show

August 26, 2017  •  Leave a Comment


I'm gearing up to photograph the ODS Championship Show this Sept 8-9-10.   Mary Cornelius Photography will be there in the Airstream right above the Terrace arena.  My worthy assistant Sharon Fibelkorn is coming up from the L.A. area to help me as she has for so many shows through the years.  

Photographic services are by sign up.   You can pre-sign up by clicking the link at the top of my home page on this site and following the directions which will put you into my Paypal account or you can sign up at my trailer at the show.  We'll be set up on Thursday to take your sign ups!  You might find some sign up forms in the show office.

Help us out during the show by bringing the sign up form to the Airstream.  We get busy and don't always make it down the hill in time to find each sign up paper that is left in the show office.   If you sign up right before your ride and leave the sign up in the office we might not find it in time.   Also, if you ride early before your scheduled ride time,  be sure to let us know!  That goes for scratches or other schedule changes.  We don't want to miss you!


2017 Scheduling fewer horse shows, more other stuff!

May 04, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

PauletteMare17-0546PauletteMare17-0546 PauletteMare17-0646PauletteMare17-0646

Catching a rare day here and there where the wet weather abates, I have been able to get out and photograph a few horses on location for their owners.  aka Farm Call Photo Sessions.  As the horses are shedding out and looking their best, Farm Call season gets into full swing.  Feel free to contact me for information on scheduling a session.  I also give discounts to groups.

My event schedule is altered this year, as I am trying to incorporate competing with my dogs in Nose Work (scent detection) trials.  As well as shifting my business a bit towards smaller events and more focused assignments for private sessions, journalistic endeavors and doing a bit of work for other photographers.  This year the only show I have scheduled as an official photographer is the Oregon Dressage Society Championship show at DevonWood in September.    I have a few other efforts in the planning stages.  Stay tuned for news on those.

I am open for scheduling private sessions, projects and assignments throughout this Spring, Summer and Fall.  Contact me for available dates.

  PiLeaping into Spring. Pi, a 2017 Sound Equine Options baby (adopted)


My schedule for Events appear to all be clustered in the month of September.

8-9-10  Official Photographer for the Oregon Dressage Society Championship Show  at DevonWood Equestrian Centre.

13   KWPN Keuring at Sonnenberg Farm - Official Photographer

16 American Holsteiner Horse Approvals at Wild Turkey Farm - Official Photographer

20-24 CDS Finals shooting for Official Photographer Terri Miller-Steiner at Rancho Murietta, CA 


Travel to Exotic Lands Morocco

March 24, 2017  •  Leave a Comment


Morocco has been on my must visit list since I first saw Raiders of the Lost Arc.  It was the market scene with all of the colorful carpets, fabrics and spices that lured me in. So, all these years later, I finally took the plunge and signed on for my second venture with Within The Frame Adventures, a photographic workshop travel company.  I had previously traveled with them to Nepal in 2014 and I liked their laid back style of travel, giving you ample days in each area to absorb and learn about what you are photographing.  

So I've recently returned from Morocco where I experienced an amazing amount of art and fabulous architecture.  It was all so colorful and beautiful practically in every direction that I looked that is was overwhelming at times.   I stayed in centuries old Riads in old medinas in Chefchaouen and Fez, rode into the Sahara desert on a camel where we camped in a luxury tent.  

Visited the homes of mountain Berbers a nomadic people who tend herds of sheep and goats and yes, make those famous Berber rugs.  I purchased a few of those beautiful rugs to bring home.  During the entire trip, I met so many kind and caring people but one thing that was made very clear.  Many Moroccan people do not want to be photographed. Some are superstitious about the evil eye while others are just tired of being treated rudely by tourists.  I found that if you talk to them, make a connection with them, then your chances of finding a willing participant may increase.  One thing that we were amused to find is that whenever we decided to get tricky and "steal" a photo of a person, looking at them later, there they were looking right at us.  We were fooling no one.  I carried my "big girl" camera with me with short lenses, but soon tired of carrying the weight of it up and down the steep hills and many stairs of the medinas.   I used my iPhone 7 for many images as well as my "toy camera" a comparatively lightweight Panasonic Lumix with 28-400mm zoom lens.  I downloaded my iPhone photos into Adobe LightRoom along with the others and they are looking pretty decent.  

 Morocco is a fabulous place to visit and explore and I heartily recommend it.  Make use of guides to help you navigate and understand what you are looking.

The inner sanctum of our Riad in Fez.  Riad Laaroussa.  Highly recommended hotel! 


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