Civil War at Pioneer Village AZ

Pioneer Village is a Living History Museum that has various events for tourists but mainly for school children.  Several times a year they have a civil war reenactment.  They day I was there it was fairly small but allowed for being able to talk to the participants and take a few images.

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I enjoy doing people pictures and try to make them as best I can and attempt to make them almost look like studio pictures.

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On sunny days it is best to move your subject to an area with shade.  This gives nice even lighting and doesn’t give you that very contrasty look that puts dark circles in the eyes.

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Pick a background that is not distracting.  You don’t want a lot of tourist in the background or other distracting elements.  Look for a plain background like the tent or cabin wall.

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You can do a full body shot to show all the clothing and gear or just do a waist up shot.  If the background is not the best you might just want a headshot.

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Don’t forget to do a few in monochrome (black and white) as this can give an old look to your images like it was actually taken in the 1860’s.

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Tourist at Yellowstone Prismatic Pool

Yellowstone has hundreds of pools that collect water.  When the mornings or days are cool, the heat produces lots of steam.  At times it can look like the whole place in on fire.  The Grand Prismatic Spring (pool) is one of the larger pools, the vivid colors in the spring are the result of microbial mats around the edges of the mineral-rich water.

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On this cool morning the fog was so thick you couldn’t see the colors but it made a nice background showing these Tourist, jut being tourist.

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Buttonwood Farm Sunflower Field

Earlier this year we traveled back to Massachusetts to do a program and judge at the New England Camera Club Council (NECCC).  After the conference, we stayed a few more days and traveled through Connecticut and Rhode Island.  We had a chance to travel to the Buttonwood Farm near Griswold to visit the Sunflower Fields.  I had never had the opportunity to photograph a Sunflower Field, so it was quite a treat.

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As you walk through a field like this, you soon realize the sunflowers are taller than you are.  That makes it hard to photograph the expanse of the field.  You end up taking pictures of single flowers or a few together.  At the field, there was a small hill on one end.  Walking to the end and climbing up the hill gave us a nice view of the entire field.  They had plowed a path through the field so you could walk.  After about 20 min. photographing, a family was seen coming down the path.  I thought that made the strongest image of the day.

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Roller Derby: Runaway Brides vs Schoolyard Scrappers

I went to see another Roller Derby match of the Arizona Derby Dames to see the Runaway Brides vs Schoolyard Scrappers, the number 1 and 3 teams.  It was a great match.

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This image shows the Schoolyard Scrappers getting ready during practice.

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It’s amazing some of the stretching exercises the girls go through before the game.  This match was exciting with two good teams.  It was fast and ruff with a lot of body contact and falls.  Probably because it was a couple of the better teams, the place was really busy.

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While action is always interesting to shoot, I like to get some of the people shots and move in for some details shots.  I thought this image of the skates was interesting with all the different angles and colors.

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Tombstone Cowboys

Tombstone has a long history associated with Cowboys.  The most famous is Wyatt Earp, Doc Holiday and the OK Corral.  While many towns of the old west have all but died, Tombstone is known as the “town too tuff to die” and it has survived on tourism.

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Doc Holiday is part of the recreation of the famous gunfight at the OK Corral.  The main street is blocked to thru traffic so the actors walk the street before the OK Corral show starts.  You can get some images of them on the street or in the actual show or at the sight of the gunfight.

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Like any street shooting you have to work with the light and get the person to pose or snap the shot as they do their thing.  Some are more open to working with you.  Usually there are others on the street that promote the town or other activities in town.

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I always like to stop into the Smoke Shop.  The man that runs the store is always dressed in Western gear and open to let you take pictures.

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Don’t forget to stop by Boot Hill Cemetery to find some interesting graves but you might find a few live ones to shoot.

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Mutton Bustin’ – Arizona Livestock Show

The Arizona Livestock Show gave me someplace to go over the Holidays the photograph.  One of the events I always enjoy is the Mutton Busting where the kids ride the sheep in events like a real rodeo.  I was surprised how fast the sheep can run and I can see how some small kids can be terrified of trying to ride.

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Many of the young kids fall off right out of the shoot while the older kids usually have a longer ride.  Ages are usually 4 to 6 year olds.

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A few fall off and start to cry but most just pick themselves up and walk out of the ring.  At this event the sun was strong and it was near noon which gave a lot of contrast and shadow in the wrong spots.  Slightly cloudy sky would be better as the clouds would act as a large diffuser.

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Pee Wee Rodeo – Arizona Livestock Show

waiting-to-ride-pee-wee-rodeo-wlc_7471Being new to Arizona, I am always looking for photogenic events.  This week was the Arizona Livestock Show.  In addition to the usual pig, goat and bull judging, there were a few other interesting events.  There was the Chuck Wagon cook off, Mutton Bustin and the Pee Wee Rodeo.

The Pee Wee Rodeo was made up of probably 5-6 year olds riding stick horses and bulls in the same events as a real rodeo.  The kids had a lot of fun and I enjoyed a few hours of photographing them.

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