Well it has certainly been way too long since my last newsletter but that is because I have been busy traveling and shooting and that is a good thing!
The season started off with my annual trip to Colorado for the Sombrero Ranch Workshop and Great American Horse Drive. As always there were hundreds of horses and plenty of action, and even after attending this event for 6 years it is still the highlight of the year for me. Sharing it with fellow photographers and horse lovers makes it extra special. I also made a trip out to the SandWash to photograph the wild horses there. Plans are underway for the 2013 Workshop and Horse Drive, stay tuned for details!
In early June I photographed the PAHA Arabian show in Hughesville, Pa and then continued south stopping at Deep Creek Fjords and Quietude Morgan Stud. These farms are both located in West Virginia and the countryside could not have been more lush and beautiful! My visit with my daughter in Boone, NC found a farmer making hay with his team of Suffolk Punches as well as a very enjoyable day spent with the Cowboy Church Wagon Train. On my way back home I photographed some hot shoeing at Tudane Farm in Virginia.
In August I met up with a wonderful group of photographer friends at the Powderhorn Ranch in Wyoming for a women's retreat. I can not say enough how inspiring and energizing this was for me and my work. As creatives we often work alone and face many obstacles on a day to day basis in a profession that is becoming more and more challenging. To set aside some time to laugh and shoot and just enjoy the moment truly helps one put life back into perspective. In addition, the location and our hosts could have not been more kind and gracious with so many opportunities for us to document the kind of lifestyle many of us think no longer exists. We all left feeling spoiled and blessed! After our retreat two friends and I took a road trip and visited the Black Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary, The Windcross Conservancy, toured the Black Hills of South Dakota and had a fun photo session with a wonderful group of cowgirls in Colorado.
As much as I enjoy traveling and visiting new places I know that I am lucky to live in such an image rich area with many great opportunities always just around the corner! I had a lovely summer evening visit with a herd of foundation Quarter Horses at Frog Alley Farm in Margaretville, New York and I also traveled to Saratoga to photograph the early morning training session. On my way back home I caught some shots of the Amish country which is growing here in upstate, New York. This gallery also includes photos from Pennsylvania's Big Valley, one of the most beautiful areas I have ever had the honor to see. This seems to be a well kept secret when it comes to Amish areas as everyone always thinks of Lancaster, so please don't tell anyone about my discovery!
I spent some time at the Brookfield Trail System photographing the NY 50/30 mile Competitive Trail Ride in July as well as the Fall Walking Horse Pleasure Trail Ride in September. In August I officiated at the Stamford Stampede Competitive Trail Ride. Exploring trails and woods and photographing trail riders is one of the favorite parts of my job!
Since I had to sit out last fall with a broken ankle I have made up for lost time and stayed very busy! In September I officiated at the New England Dressage Festival in Saugerties, NY and also the Winley Farm Holsteiner inspection. In addition I have had the pleasure to shoot some truly fun and lovely portrait sessions with KC Claffee and her boys, the Appaloosas and ponies of Windswept Acres, two ladies dressed up in medieval dress in the woods and Jenn and her boy Solomon at the Great Gully Waterfall. Yes, I have the best job in the world!
Finally, In October we had a small portraiture workshop with the great Betty Cooper in the Catskills at the Frost Valley YMCA. Betty continues to inspire me to work on my portraiture skills!
Now the days are dark and short, the leaves are off the trees and snow is in the air. I will be making a trip to the west coast soon, and am looking forward to exploring some new places. In December I plan to spend some time in Chincoteague to photograph the ponies and the snow goose migration, something I will never tire of experiencing.