‘California Chrome’ by Ripley - 2015
Ripley’s iconic portrait of the American 'Horse Of The Year 2014 & 2016’ stood in front of the world famous Frank Gehry designed Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles.
California Chrome was sent to the UK in 2015 where he had been due to race at Royal Ascot, but due to a minor hoof injury was unable to race at the event.
Ripley had two sessions to take his picture; the first in April shortly after he arrived in the UK, and the second in July just before heading back to the USA. This portrait was from the first session.
A few years earlier in 2012, Ripley had been in Los Angeles creating some background imagery for future ideas and had taken numerous images of the Concert Hall. When thinking about the environment in which to place California Chrome it seemed appropriate to place him in front of the contemporary metal clad building, rather than a more traditional thoroughbred scene.
Many photographs of the building had been taken, but in order to flow the dramatic lines of the architecture around the anatomy of the horse, elements were changed such as adjusting the orientation of the building and extending the foreground paving in order to give the correct perspective. Sky was added and colour tones carefully blended throughout the portrait, which all add to the cohesiveness of the final piece.
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