Tag Archives: barrel racing

Best of 2015: Rodeo

It’s that time of year when I like to look back on the year that just closed and try to distill a set of “best of”.  As I had the chance to shoot a bit of rodeo this year – let’s start with a few of those.

So – in no particular order – here you go.

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Barrel Racing at the Polk County Fair

barrel racing - Polk County Fair-3As I mentioned over on the Camera 47 FB page – it’s an odd day when I get more barrel racing keepers than  from the bronc events.  But that’s exactly what happened up at the Polk County Fair  – rodeo provided by Wild West Events, Inc.  It was mostly an evening of rough stock (bareback bronc, saddle bronc, and bull riding) – but there was also some barrel racing – and just for fun – some mutton busting.

All too often, I can get into a groove (rut?) when shooting rodeo –  mostly because I have a preferred location (or two) for each event.  But while up at Polk County, to be honest, I was a little out of sorts.  It was a pretty small arena but for the horse racing segment – I happened to be outside the arena near what is often the 1st barrel (depending on the rider’s preferred pattern) – and in between some gulps of water – tried for a few images.  The dust + low light were great elements to work with.

This trip to the rodeo was also the first gig with the new camera.  I’m digging it – but I’m still trying to dial in the nuances.  Hopefully, more on that later.

In no particular order – here’s a few barrel racing images from the evening:

barrel racing - Polk County Fair-1

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Top Photos from 2014

Is it too late for a “2014 Best of” post?  Hopefully this one is only arriving “casually late”.  Smile

That said, regardless of your photography experience, I think it’s a good practice to go through your photos periodically and choose a few that you consider to be among the best.  The transition from December to January provides, if nothing else, a convenient marker.

So, in no particular order, here are a few from my 2014 archive.

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10 for 2014-1

This is arguably my best Milky Way image.  More details here.

10 for 2014-2

From a quick trip up to Mt St Helens – here’s an image of the edge of the crater that I’d posted over on the Facebook page.

10 for 2014-3

And there I was standing on the Morrison Bridge (trying to get an image for the Bite of Oregon) when the bridge went up.  I also posted a number of images from that gig over on the Camera 47 Facebook page.

10 for 2014-4

From the Harrisburg Harvest Festival and Tractor Pull.  More images from that afternoon can be found here.

10 for 2014-5

Who would have thought that fisheye lenses and historic bombers were a great combination?  More images of this B-17 can be found here.

10 for 2014-6

2014 was the year that I learned about the IR72 filter + X100s.  More details can be found here.

10 for 2014-7

Happened to be in San Francisco for business and brought the X100s along.  This is a panorama cobbled together from a series of handheld images.

10 for 2014-8

Could I really have an annual list of photos and not have a rodeo image?

10 for 2014-9

Or two?  More images from this year’s Philomath Frolic and Rodeo can be found here and here.  If you’re looking for more rodeo – check out the Exposure story.

10 for 2014-10

Or some hot air balloon photos?

10 for 2014-11

Just playing.  This photo can also be found over on my Exposure.co site.

10 for 2014-14

Had a chance to shoot some Polar Plunges for Oregon Special Olympics. The Portland event had a group of Super Plungers that ran once an hour for 24 hours into the very chilly Columbia River.  I posted a number of photos from my time with the Super Plungers over on the Camera 47 Facebook page.

10 for 2014-15

Just a bit of flooding here in Corvallis.

10 for 2014-16

More Viking! At the Bend Polar Plunge.  More images from my trip to Bend can be found here.

10 for 2014-17

The debut of Saddle Shop over the summer.  You can see more from this gig over at Exposure.co.

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Was looking for a vintage-feeling portrait for this one that connected the student, his school, and sport.

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At the county fair for a dance performance and happened to have the X100s + IR72 filter with me.  Really dug the architecture + sun + colors on this one.  I thought the combination provided an unexpected industrial feel.

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Our dog was waiting for a bit of beef jerky in some pretty strong light with shadow.

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Christmas morning sunrise over Fish Lake just outside Leavenworth, WA.  Not sure what created all of the sparkles speckles.  I’m guessing it was a really dirty filter.  Then, again, it was Christmas morning.

2014 Philomath Frolic & Rodeo: Roping & Racing

The Philomath Frolic & Rodeo just wrapped up another year and thankfully I had the chance to be out there again for three of the four shows.  Here’s a few from the roping and racing (plus one steer wrestling image).

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Steer Wrestling

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Tie Down Roping

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Barrel Racing

Yep, that’s Stevie Rae Willis of Stompin’ Ground fame.  I also have a photo of Sam Willis (her dad) steer wrestling here.

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Team Roping

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Break Away Roping

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Tie Down Roping

Rodeo Week: Roping and Barrel Racing

Just for fun – I thought I’d share more photos from the 2012 Philomath Frolic and Rodeo – but instead of just dumping a bunch of photos on you at once – I decided to give you a few each day all week long.  So – informally – we’ll consider this “rodeo week”.

Today – a few roping and barrel racing photos.

In no particular order:

  • Breakaway.  A bit of experimenting with panning and roping. 
  • Tie down roping.
  • Barrel racing.
  • More barrel racing.
  • Team roping – the event I consider the most difficult in rodeo to photograph.

PFR 2012 - Friday-5 PFR 2012 - Sunday-3 PFR 2012 - Friday-9PFR 2012 - Sunday-20

PFR 2012 - Sunday-11

Slack Night at the Rodeo

Thursday was slack at the Philomath Frolic and Rodeo in Philomath.  Just thought I’d post a few photos.  Oddly enough – no steer wrestling – but plenty of roping.

Tonight – just for fun – I worked on some panning technique and even pulled out the Lensbaby Sweet 35 for a few frames.

From top to bottom:

  • Tie down roping
  • Breakaway roping
  • Team roping
  • Barrel racing (panning)
  • Barrel racing (Lensbaby)

Philomath Frolic 2012 Thursday-1 Philomath Frolic 2012 Thursday-2 Philomath Frolic 2012 Thursday-5 Philomath Frolic 2012 Thursday-6 Philomath Frolic 2012 Thursday-7

Saturday Afternoon at the Rodeo

Headed on out to the Benton County (Fair &) Rodeo on Saturday to shoot a few photos.

Have I mentioned before that I think Team Roping is probably the most difficult rodeo event to shoot?  If so – let me say it again…

And – the last shot?  Well – that’s from the last ride of the weekend – an 84 point performance by Charlie Skidgel on Disco Dog – to take it all home.  One heck of a performance.

So – in no particular order – here you go.

“Back Stage”

Benton County Rodeo - 2011 - for the blog-1Just never know exactly what you’re going to get when you aim a lens at steer wrestlers.  Really a lot of fun to photograph.

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Saddle broncBenton County Rodeo - 2011 - for the blog-4 Team Roping

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A little barrel racing (and a little fun with a longer exposure). Benton County Rodeo - 2011 - for the blog-10 Bull Riding.

Benton County Rodeo - 2011 - for the blog-13 Benton County Rodeo - 2011 - for the blog-16

And – well – since you stuck around this long – I thought maybe I’d pass along something I tried on Saturday that I think worked pretty well.

As it turns out – it’s not always easy to keep track of what order riders actually ride (for example – Chase was third on the list for bull riders – but he rode last).  Often – a quick snapshot of the scoreboard before or after the ride will help – but – at small rodeos like this one – there’s no scoreboard.  On Saturday – I happen to put a small Zoom H2 on a Gorillapod and wrapped it onto a fence and just let it run for the length of the show – just for fun.  It not only delivered a great soundtrack – but I used it to confirm the rider / bull combo for the 84 point ride.

10 Rodeo Images from 2010

This last month has simply been a traffic jam at the intersection of “full time dude-in-a-cube” and “holidays” and “part time photography” – and the blog has been a bit neglected.  Sorry ‘bout that.

And it’s not that I haven’t been thinking about photography (and you folks).  Actually – quite the opposite.  It’s just that I haven’t been typing all that much on the blog.  But you should see my notebook!  (lots of scribbles) There are also a few more books (and ebooks) and pieces of gear to review – but I guess that will all need to wait until next year – when I’ll hopefully get this corner of the blog-o-sphere tidied up a bit.

And that brings me to the post at hand – long time readers of Camera 47 know that I’m a fan of year-end Top 10 lists – especially when it comes to the challenge of distilling down a year’s worth of photos to a critical few.  Well – I’m going to stick to my formula of giving you two lists – one of rodeo images – and one for everything else.  So – in no particular – here are 10 rodeo images from 2010 that I thought stood out a bit more than the others.

Agree?  Disagree?  Let me know what you think.   Benton County Rodeo - a few for blog - low res-1for blog - sRGB-3PFR - Thursday - quickly low res-1bw-1Benton County Rodeo - a few for blog - low res-4

PFR - Thursday - quickly low res-2PFR - Sunday - low res-6

JJ horse - sRGB-1

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A Few from Sunday Afternoon at the Rodeo

PFR - Sunday - low res-5The last day of the Philomath Frolic and Rodeo – and there were definitely photos to be had.

Mostly – photos were easier on Sunday – as the arena was not in shade – and the sun wasn’t setting.  This arena – like many others – simply isn’t all that bright at night.

And it just happened to be a pretty eventful day of rough stock.  But as these things go – it takes a lot of photos – and a lot of opportunities – to nail that definitive moment.  I’m not sure yet what the “perfect” shot is in rodeo – I guess I’m still looking for it.  But until then – here are a few from Sunday’s event as I keep practicing.PFR - Sunday - low res-8

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10 Rodeo Photos from 2009

Well – it’s that time of year for “Top 10” lists – so I thought I’d get it started with a little rodeo.

Images are from the Philomath Frolic & Rodeo and the Benton County Rodeo.  These are listed in no particular order.  Hope you enjoy them.

2009 PFR - low res - fun-11

2009 PFR - low res - fun-12 2009 PFR - low res - fun-10benton county rodeo 2009 - low res-1 benton county rodeo 2009 - low res-2benton county rodeo 2009 - low res-4benton county rodeo 2009 - low res-3

steer wrestling - top 10 - low res-1

tie down - top 10 - low res-1

bull riders - top 10 - low res-1