What a strange year for everyone. I can only imagine some of the struggles that families have faced and lived through, this year, I can only reflect on my own uncertainties about the future and the trials and tribulations of an uncertain year. In the midst of a lot of negative situations throughout the year, it was also packed with positivity. In striving to overcome, 2020 pulled the best out of people. It raised awareness to so many situations. It gave rise to creativity like we have never seen before. Here we are… still standing… battling the negativity with a positive push forward.
For me, after just leaving an 18 year career as a photojournalist and opening a full time studio and photography workshop business, it was entirely overwhelming. Just as things started to take off, it was shut down.
I have to say, I am thankful for much of the learning that would not have been possible without the nine month, time-out. During the pandemic we created a new podcast called “ Pain and Joy“, put together a large, 5-day photo workshop, went through nearly 1/2 million images, re-keywording and editing. We put together marketing strategy’s for the new year and studied so many new techniques, it has been almost to the point of re-education. Camera equipment is all cleaned and refurbished, to the point of rubbing the surface off. I started an intense exercise routine that I call ‘rodeo fit’. We had time to work with our pups, Sassy and Bodie. They weren’t always happy with the intense behavioral modification regime, but they are now to a point where they go with us almost everywhere.
With the lack of events to shoot – Zero to be exact – we concentrated on our passion… Rodeo. We were actually able to shoot more of them this year, due to lack of traveling by other photographers. Lisa, who has been an architectural and virtual tour photographer for the last 13 years, dove head first into the rodeo and lifestyle world and started the PRCA permit process. I submitted an application to shoot the NFR, as one of the official photographers. In a normal year, you are required to shoot a large number of rodeos just to apply. Due to the reduced number of rodeo events, the 8 rodeos we had were enough. Capping off our year was the call that I was chosen, in an official capacity to be a part of the 2020, National Finals Rodeo. My position was to shoot the first ever, National Finals Breakaway Roping. I would say that as I look back, It was an amazing year, in many ways.
Looking foward to 2021 and the possibilities it will bring.