Sunday, February 24, 2013

Ride 'Em Cowboy

I love shooting the rodeo. I've shot Indian rodeos in Wyoming back in 1980 and a Globe, Arizona rodeo last year. My relationship with my new friend Jim Nintzel led me to suggest we shoot the rodeo together. He went after credentials and was quickly included- as quickly as I was excluded. The rodeo PR department googled me and thought my work didn't include such things as rodeos. Granted I have done plenty of girlie pieces but I also have done just as much non- girlie work. ie for the New York Times Sunday magazine, NY Times travel section, Vogue, Ellie and Der Spiegel, the German Time magazine. As regards sports, I edited probably the best baseball bk ever done- Neil Leifer's "Ballet In The Dirt". My `girlie' work remains an albatross around my neck but fortunately Jim persisted and we got shiny orange media passes for Saturday 23rd. It listed our access as "Photo Pit", "Chutes" and "South Viewing". Everyone knew Jim and one guy when I got introduced said "I thought you were in San Francisco". (I did live there 7 yrs ago).
I then met young Zach who had been a student of Jim's and now worked in media.

La Fiesta de los Vaqueros is huge. We were lead up to a raised shooting area and below us was a pit of tall lean men in chaps. I kept thinking of Brokeback Mountain, though I had never seen it. The cowboy hat motif and the wash board stomachs reminded me of being a transfer student at the University of Colorado Boulder in 1966 where my friend Sam Bruskin kept exclaimingthat  the blonde girl students in short shorts and flimsy tank tops were trying to kill him. 
Below me was a passion pit of young men for men and women to enjoy (the visuals) but no one seemed to notice.

A rodeo princess came along with her mom and I got to shoot her.

Jim made brilliant action shots of all the events. He had a Canon EOS with a long zoom lens and if one went to the you'd see his shots. I knew immediately my cameras couldn't reach the action. I concentrated on portraits.

a security guy

his first rodeo

the fellow who had the same job as Marc Benecke at Studio 54. He let us in and out at the "soouth viewing".

the hands of one of the members of the Rodeo committee

the back of one of the crew that brought out the bull ring.

some beautiful dude walking past me.

some beautiful cowgirl walking past me

One of the contestants that snapped his elbow on the first event.

the ladies rode like a bat out of hell carrying banners for like standards as Wendy's 

the folks 

afterwards Jim and I hit Taqueria Pico De Gallo on lower 6th avenue for the chile and lime fruit cup including coconut. I used to bring my mom there. Its the first place I got to know through my friend filmmaker Danny Vinik before I moved here and used to just visit.

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