Monday, March 26, 2012

How Not to Photograph a Rodeo

                         Molokai Rodeo, Maunaloa, Hawaii

      Forget taking pictures when the horse and rider are clearly out of sync. The people in the pictures won’t thank you and the animals look daft.
      Hesitate and you miss it. Moving closer to the action gives you a chance for dramatic action shots if you're fast enough, but more of the frames will look like this. And don’t use multiple exposure bursts for every shot or you’ll spend your next month sorting pictures.     
      Try to stay out of the action. This was a little too close for comfort. Rodeos have a dress code. Wear a cowboy hat and shirt and they might let you in the ring to take photos with charging cows, galloping horses and cowboys who will stop at nothing to win a big shiny buckle. There is no time to zoom out when a cow is bolting towards you. Panicking cows are not predictable so chances are you’ll run the wrong way. Stay further back and use the zoom, but don’t hesitate to look like a rodeo clown high tailing it over a fence, just keep your camera strap around your neck in case you suddenly need both hands. If you tend to freeze pick another subject to photograph, like bunnies sleeping in a basket.  
     Don’t count on people in the background to be watching the action.
                               Don’t count on hats to stay on. 

                             Count on cows to jump the gun.

                      And expect horses to have the last laugh.

                          But keep smiling, no matter what.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Mud Girls of Molokai

It's been raining, finally and cold enough to hunt around for socks. Between downpours the sun came out briefly making the pavement steam. I took my friend's kids to the beach, or to be more exact, the mud flats.
 I make mistakes. When kids ask, "Is it okay if I get my clothes dirty? I totally get why parents scream "NOT ON YOUR LIFE". Make no mistake,"Yeah why not?" IS permission to go wild. Especially when you have intentionally gone to a beach known for foot deep warm squishy mud.        I wasn't really paying attention to be honest or I would have known that a little mud fight would rapidly turn into full on wallowing . 

Mamo, the dog of unknown origin with the big personality, loved sprinting in the mud. When he stopped he stuck his tongue out, which is exactly what I did the first time I sank above my ankles

It felt like walking in a big old bowl of adhesive pudding. Unlike the kids and the dog I didn't feel the urge to lie down in it even though it looked like a spa treatment. I am a little hesitant to show the pictures to the parents. I hope they laugh.