I didn't give up. Almost twenty years ago I made several images of wild horses silhouetted against an orange sky in western North Dakota.
I really liked how those pictures looked and every time I was out there I'd try to put wild horses against a colorful sky.
It didn't happen.
For almost twenty years I tried and failed to create any similar images.
But I never gave up.
And two days ago I did the unlikely. I was in Teddy Roosevelt National Park in western North Dakota at sunrise and I made these images of wild horses.
I first approached a group of three horses on a ridge. By keeping them between me and the sun and placing the colorful sky behind them I got the silhouettes.
Once they walked around the hill and out of the light I focused on two horses standing in a shade filled valley below.
I slowly approached and was lucky they didn't mind me being there. By laying flat on the frost covered ground and quietly moving around I was able to isolate the horses with the rising sun behind them.
I only had about five minutes before the two horses I was with started looking up the hill towards the other horses.
I heard a horse running towards us.
I kept shooting and was glad I did. I only had a few seconds before the stallion that was one of the three horses on the hill came thundering down. He lowered and snaked his head letting the mare and yearling I was photographing know it was time to go. He snorted, circled them, and started moving them up the hill towards the other two horses in his band.
This last image is of the stallion posturing for my benefit, just before he chased his mares away.
My odds weren't good and the likelihood of any of this happening was almost none. But I persisted, and the unlikely happened on Monday in western North Dakota.