Well, there are many things in this life that I can say I never thought I'd do... and right toward the top of the list would have to be photographing a rodeo! But.....
I'm SO glad that Stephanie and Steve Vinson, the owners of Longhorn Farms Arena, asked me to take pictures at their brand spankin' new rodeo arena in Toney, Alabama! It's way out there in around the Madison and Limestone county line, somewhere right around Harvest and Athens.
I had no idea what to expect because well, it was my first rodeo... like, EVER. I had never even been to a rodeo and now I was supposed to photograph one! Needless to say, I was a bit nervous, but I have about 50 weddings under my belt so it couldn't be much different, right?! Ok, I'm kidding.. sort of. ;)
Garey (my hubby) and I got there early to scope things out and was amazed to see all the gorgeous horses, bulls, calves and the people! I couldn't stop staring at the horses.. they are simply beautiful animals.
I've photographed many of my high school seniors with their pets, but horses and dogs are always my favorite. Horses have such a majesty about them.. so different than any other animal on the planet.
I was excited to find out that I could be SUPER close to the action.. and when you see the picture of the kid climbing the gates you'll know where I was. When I say I was close the action, I mean it! (Btw, that kid is the little brother of 2 of my past Senior twin brother clients! Small world!)
I learned there are a few sayings that I guess I just never realized actually have roots in the rodeo, like "hot right outta the gate".. that one came to life real fast! When those cowboys swung those gates open, I had to be awake and paying good attention to keep up.. and I loved every single minute of it!
Since I'm a mom of boys, I've always loved photographing their sports (in fact, that's how my photography business actually began!) so I've always had a heart for being right there in the middle of the action, watching from behind my camera and clicking til my heart was content.. photographing every snap, kick, throw, catch, everything! But THIS? This is a different kind of sport and I flippin' LOVED it!
I honestly can't choose a favorite part because the whole thing was just amazing to me.. I was there for two nights in a row and was just as amazed the second night as I was the first! Though I can't choose a favorite part, I CAN show you the scariest part.. you'll see it when you scroll through the pictures, so I won't ruin the surprise. It happened on the second night when it was pouring down rain and although my heart skipped several beats, I didn't stop clicking the shutter. I don't know that young man's name, but he has my utmost respect. In fact, all the guys and gals that hit that red Alabama dirt- whether on a horse or a bull- have more guts in their pinky finger than I do in my whole body and they definitely have my respect.
I guess I've rambled enough, I hope you've enjoyed seeing something a little different from KNP.. and don't be surprised to see more because I'll be out there again in June, August, September and October! And don't be surprised if you see me buying a pair of cowgirl boots either... ;)