People Photography: Cowgirl In Training

This past Saturday Pam and I went to the Atlanta Veteran's Day parade, which is held every year. This was the 1st time we have attended the parade. We met up with another local photographer who is part of the Atlanta Street Photographer Group over on Facebook. It's a pretty good little group of Atlanta area photographers who are interested in street photography. The weather was good and the parade was as well. We spent about 45 minutes before the parade started walking around capturing various images. Once the parade started we parked ourselves along the route where I tried to photograph as many people as possible. Near the end of the parade a group of people riding horses made its way down the parade route. That's when I saw an older man and a little girl, the cowgirl in training, on a horse:Cowgirl in Training

Information and Inspiration

I am not much of a "people" photographer. But, I do want to improve my people photography skills, especially in a street or urban setting. That's part of the reason I went to the parade with my camera. I figured it would be a great place to get people photographs. Like almost all parades it was comprised of groups of people marching along the route. While I made photographs of many of those groups I was looking for a more "personal" perspective. I had brought my Canon T3i with the 18-135 lens in hopes that I could use the one lens to capture the parade. The lens has a pretty good range, from a decent wide angle to mid-range telephoto. I definitely used the entire range during the parade. When the group of horses and riders made it's way up the parade route I immediately noticed the horse with an older gentleman and a very pretty young girl dressed in pink. As they rounded the corner of the road I tried to position myself to get the best image I could. I set the lens at the full 135mm and waited until they were relatively "in the clear" before I made the photograph. I took about 4 shots and settled on the one you see, which has the little girl looking pretty much right at me. The color of her hat, jacket and boots was nice and older gentleman has a very contented look on his face. I even managed to get part of the Horse's head in the image. I'm fairly happy with the image. It's not 100% sharp but considering the setting, timing and lens I'm pretty happy with it. One thing I may try to change is to clone out the "do not enter" sign that is in the background.

Photographing people is a challenge for me but I think I'm getting better at it. I've committed to putting myself in situations where I "have" to photograph people and I think that will help me get better.