Adam Glascow Cup
Wanganui Camera Club
May 2012
Set of six digital images

12. Steer Wrestling

Steer wrestling (1 of 6)

Steer wrestling (2 of 6)

Steer wrestling (3 of 6)

Steer wrestling (4 of 6)

Steer wrestling (5 of 6)

Steer wrestling (6 of 6)

These dramatic photos are eagerly bought by the cowboys in them so they can show their skill and bravery to others. "See how I jumped off my horse at full gallop and grabbed the horns of that runaway steer."

The easy part of taking action photos like these is that it is repeated twenty times over for each event. You can get your camera settings perfected. But then come the hard parts. You have to take twenty sets of pictures to ensure you get the best competitor. And because the bulldogging event takes place near midday, and the steer runs south, you have to shoot with bright summer sunlight directly behind the subject. When I photographed these events, either the cowboy was blacked out, or the background had an overpowering glare. Then there are the clouds of dust that can envelop your expensive telephoto lens and camera body.

Here the dust cloud in the background has been used to accentuate the action, while other bright light in the background has been cropped out or reduced by subtle photoshopping.

A final photo with the successful cowboy signalling to the timekeeper with a triumphant expression on his face would give an added touch of human emotion.

Highly commended.