What I Didn’t Realize Before My First Video Shoot

When you head into a project you've never done before, you aren't sure what to expect. This is what I didn't know before my first video shoot.

When managing editor Nichole Chirico told me I would be assisting with video shoots I knew I would be capturing boomerangs for Instagram and snapping iPhone photos for Facebook, what I didn’t know was that it would be so. much. more.

I didn’t realize that by Tuesday I would be confused as to what day it was. When we wrapped up shooting on Tuesday, the whole crew was at a loss for what day it actually was—we all hoped it was Friday. As a crew we spent around 30 hours shooting video, which also entailed grooming and saddling horses, making sure the team stayed hydrated, and any other miscellaneous tasks that needed to be completed to have a successful shoot.


I didn’t realize I would step behind the real camera to shoot photos. Nichole is the photo master at Horse&Rider, so when she handed the camera over to me, I’m sure it felt just as strange to her as it did myself. I’m also sure Nichole was tired of my hundreds of questions I asked as I was using the camera. It was a learning experience and I learned that it’s much more difficult to capture photos of horses and cattle than I imagined. Let’s hope the pictures turned out great, and Nichole lets me use the camera more in the future.

Taking photos of talented trainers and horses made being behind the camera fun and easy! Nichole Chirico

I didn’t realize I would become a semi-professional at transferring SD cards to hard drives. To keep the shoot rolling, someone had to take the job of carefully transferring full cards onto hard drives. Lucky for me, that was my job. Although I had a few minor heart attacks as my computer died several times and I misplaced a card—only for a moment—the process was easy and smooth. All of the cards transferred properly, and we are now ready to timestamp the videos to send them off to editors.

I also didn’t realize I would learn so much from Bud Lyon and Brad Barkemeyer. I’m a believer I can learn something from everyone, I just didn’t realize how much I would be learning. Even though I was busy with other tasks, I was still able to take mental notes of training tips I found useful to apply to my own horses. Bud and Brad also train for different disciplines than I compete in, so I found it interesting to take training information from those disciplines to apply to my own.

[LEARN FROM BRAD & BUD: Horse Training & Horse-Care]

I didn’t realize I would meet Shining Lil Nic—a legend in the cow horse industry. SLN made the video shoot a breeze, with his sheer talent and stunning looks. Being able to watch how SLN worked a cow re-sparked my interest in cow horses and my desire to make a cow horse event the next I try my hand at.

Nichole Chirico received the opportunity to ride Shining Lil Nic under instruction of Brad Barkemeyer. Michaela Jaycox

There’s a lot that I didn’t know about before my first video shoot, and I’m sure as I head into my next shoot there will be more for me to learn. In the meantime, I’ll get back to what I do know—all things digital at Horse&Rider.  

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