Tuesday, July 23, 2019

A Rodeo for Kids

Our local rodeo has a 4-day run--the first day is Family Night, a free event sponsored by a local bank branch.  Events are available for children aged 2-16 years. This year, 138 children participated.  Winners of the various events earn a beautiful buckle; this year, a 5-year-old girl won two buckles, both in events on horseback.  It's an extremely popular evening. The animals involved include goats, sheep, cows, and horses.

This little one would like to hold the rope which has a goat on the other end.
One heat of the popular stick horse race; watching the parents is half the fun.

Rodeo royalty always have the job of handling the reluctant goats.
This little boy just had his 2nd birthday; he really didn't understand the object of the "race" was to untie the ribbon tied around the goat's tail.  I LOVE the look he is giving his dad while others are trying to help him do what he came for! 

Mom explains what to do by showing him a video; he runs so happily...and he pets the goat!
This 10-year-old rode her horse from the end of the arena, jumped off, grabbed the goat's tether and wrestled it to the ground.  Then she "hog-tied" the goat's 4 legs so it couldn't kick free in 10 seconds. (She won a buckle!)
"Dummy roping" --the goal is to throw a loop over the dummy steer's horns or head. 
"Mutton busting" involves trying to ride a sheep with only a rope to hang onto. She yelled the entire ride.
As he came out of the chute, he slipped to the side; the outcome became obvious in the next few steps.
This 5-year-old participated in the stake race.
I call this "Grandpa fail" because the grandson hit the dirt when the pony's saddle came off!
Later evening events included the barrel race...riding a horse in a cloverleaf pattern around three barrels in a timed event.  It was decided that the horses didn't like the white barrels!
This 5 year old rode a horse to win the age group in pole bending and barrels.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

P52 - Week #27

I would love to be a rodeo photographer...amateur, of course.  However, it needs to be daytime rodeo.  Several years ago, our local rodeo was three performances, two evening and one afternoon.  Photographing action such as calf roping, barrel racing, bronc and bull riding was relatively simple --even from the grandstand.  I used a Pentax camera with a 70-300 mm telephoto lens.  Those were the days! Now the rodeo has only evening performances and I simply don't have a lens that is adequate for action in the low light.  It has changed my whole attitude about photographing during the four days of rodeo action. 

"Extra" ropers and barrel racers compete during "slack," which is after the first evening performance and in the morning of the next day.  I would rather photograph the bronc and bull riding, but it's no longer workable.  This year, I spent some time one morning during roping slack.  Next year, I will rent the lens that I need.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

P52 - Week #26

Summer hasn't been the same this that, I mean that we've had very few hot days. I suppose that's a positive in many ways, but after 4 months of snow, we're ready for some heat.  When hot days do come, we can generally count on a summer thunderstorm, as well.  The one in this photo rolled in from the southeast, moving across the Grande Ronde Valley, skirting Mt. Fanny and Mt. Harris (foreground).

I'm caught up with my P52 weekly images...and this is rodeo week!  There are photo opportunities galore.

Monday, July 8, 2019

P52 - Week #25

I called this image "Contemplation" when I posted it on my Facebook page.  Granddaughter Ava Maeve and Leah, a chimpanzee at the Portland, Oregon zoo,  studied each other for awhile.  I am so thankful that our gift of a zoo pass for our son and his little family has provided so many wonderful opportunities for all of them...and for grandparents, too!  (The pass includes two "guests" each visit.)

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

P52 - Week #24

Several years ago, I spent a lot of time editing photos by adding textures to them; obviously, florals are perfect for textures.  This is one of my peonies with a Kim Klassen texture and a Robert Louis Stevenson quote I found online.  Often these photos become canvases.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

P52 - Week #23

My youngest great-niece, Kennedy, is growing children tend to do!  She is 10 years old, and this year has been a big one for her.  She finished fourth grade, joined 4-H and raised, exhibited, and sold her lamb "Lane" at the Eastern Oregon Livestock show.  She also began riding in rodeo playdays in earnest, even moving from her faithful 25-year-old "Easy" horse to a new young gelding from Montana that she named "Diamond."  I grew up riding horses, and I love seeing how much Kennedy has grown as a rider in just a year.  Recently, I photographed Kennedy and Diamond at a local playday and edited the images with a watercolor texture. 

Week #23

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

P52 - Week #22

Mt. Harris is located on the southeast edge of the Grande Ronde Valley, north of 7000 ft. Mt. Fanny, and across the valley from 6000 ft. Mt. Emily.  Both Harris and Emily are easily accessible by vehicle and provide the eye-popping panorama of the huge valley.  Our trip up the south side of Mt. Harris gave us a view of the more southern end of the Grande Ronde and the many acres of flooded farmland.  We also watched a rainstorm descend on the towns of Cove and Union from our vantage point that day.