Sunday, August 31, 2008

I don't get a chance to shoot much rodeo action so I really look forward to the Kendall County Fair & Rodeo each year.  Arena lighting is pretty abysmal so action shots are difficult, but getting there early gives me a chance to shoot all the prep work that goes on, everything from cowboys putting rosin on their ropes to famous bull-fighters (rodeo clowns to some of you) like Leon Coffee preparing his 'mildly' modified Model T. Mr. Coffee has a stellar biography as a world-famous bull-fighter/rodeo clown and puts on a great show in between the various rides. If you want to learn more about bull-fighting and Leon Coffee, this Texas Monthly article is well worth your time.

Finally, as I learn more about rodeo and watch the action, the riders called Pick-up Men are clearly the unsung heros of the arena. I watched these guys save downed riders from ticked off broncs, lasso and haul off a runaway bull that got out during barrel racing (now THAT was exciting) and do it as if they were welded to their horse.  Next time you're at a rodeo watch these guys work, they're amazing.