Sunday, July 30, 2017

Westward Ho Moments

Emanuel LeFevre or so he says

The man from Rolla

Last Saturday we took a jaunt to Rayado, New Mexico where we had learned there was a Kit Carson Museum. Though we have our own Kit Museum here in Taos, the open road called and we headed east on US 64, through Angel Fire, Eagle Nest and Cimarron Canyon to tiny Rayado. Do we have names.

Rayado and the museum reside on the monumental EX UU Bar Ranch and are part of Philmont Scout Ranch about which I dreamed in the early and mid-fifties.

At Rayado we found the appropriately named Rayado Trading Post which does double duty as the Kit Carson Museum and is manned by college age reenactors playing frontiersmen and offering tours of the old post. Among them were two young men: one hailing from Saint Joseph’s College in Brooklyn Heights, Nuevo York and the other from Springfield, Missouri. The former, clearly a method actor, called himself Emanuel LeFevre, who came west from Quebec or Saint Louis. Contestant number two, an Eagle Scout, was a student at Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla, Missouri. That's him with his trained chicken Rosita below.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Intimate Details

There was an Aztec ceremony or velaciĆ³n at famed Ranchos Church a week ago Saturday. Steve Bundy, John Farnsworth and I photographed the spectacle in all its colorful glory and yet again I default to toned black and white. Which is not to say that Kodachrome moments won't follow in due course. 

As the pageantry wound down this intimate exchange emerged. As best I can figure these participants are experiencing a cleansing practice called limpia using prayer sticks made of fresh flowers. I found their warm engagement to be brimming with kinship and goodwill, commodities in rare supply these days. And I find hand kissing to be largely missing in public discourse. 

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Not so fast smarty pants

Last week I offered faces in the crowd and pledged more action shots from small town rodeos in New Mexico. After reviewing shots from the Taos Sheriff’s Posse Rodeo I've learned that I have a lot to learn about stopping the action.

So instead, here’s more from the Jacob Mastic Memorial Rodeo in suburban Santa Fe. A good friend in California lamented that she had always struggled photographing her son’s high school football games to which I responded, “I’ve got that wired. Not a problem for me.” Sorry Kathy, that is very much not the case. Mea culpa.

Then another friend, the wonderful photographer Terry Thompson, said that has found color effective in portraying the frantic action of dusty cowpokes at work. Here's one:

This is from the Taos Rodeo. It almost works.

Sunday, July 09, 2017

Rodeo Folk

Twice in the last month I’ve photographed rodeos. There’s so much action that it’s a third career just selecting the best sequences of saddle bronc riding, bull riding and the ever popular bulldogging. Then there are the faces of rodeo participants and spectators to which I am drawn.

Because selecting the best action shots is so daunting I’m offering more folks in the crowd today. This despite my pledge last week to share snorting bulls and horses in mid-buck.

These, by the way, are from the 50th annual Taos Sheriffs Posse Rodeo held June 24 and 25.

Sunday, July 02, 2017

Don't mess with mama

I have to say that ranch, or is it rodeo, women seem like a hard-bitten lot. Is it just me but doesn't this mother-daughter duo with forty pounds each of beer girdle look tough enough to kick your effete ass?

These faces in the crowd are from the Jacob Mastic Memorial Rodeo. More action shots next time.