Thursday, July 30, 2009

Say "Goodbye, July"

Finally glad to see that July is over for another year. Hopefully, August will bring us some of the summer weather that we haven't seen yet this year. The ground is pretty much saturated and, if my weather gauge is correct, we got an inch and a half of rain since Monday, but then again the day isn't over.

Planter with petunias.

Old Conrail engine heading east on the Mainline at Cresson, PA.

Norfolk Southern

These next three photographs show the engines belonging to the Ashville Volunteer Fire Company who will be the host for the 88th annual Volunteer Firemen's Association of Cambria County & Vicinity Convention Wednesday (29July09) thru Saturday (1Aug09).

Engine 602 - a 1997 HME 4-Guys pumper-rescue, 1500 gpm Hale pump with a 750 gallon water tank.

Engine 603 - and the pride of the fire company. 2008 HME 4-Guys Pumper-Tanker. 2,250 gpm Hale pump, 1,500 gallon water tank. Also comes equipped with 2,200 feet of 5 inch supply hose and carries a 3,000 gallon port-a-tank.

Tanker 604 - 1986 International 4-Guys. Carries 3,000 gallon of water, plus a 3,000 gallon port-a-tank. So far this year, this rural fire company has responded to 66 calls.

Face mask, laying on the dashboard of one of the fire engines.

Gay feathers, shot in the early evening setting sun.

A chef at Torvian Hall, on the campus of Saint Francis University, prepares an omelette for me at about 8:30 on Saturday morning. This past weekend was Alumni Weekend at the University and I was hired to photograph the gathering. The omelette tasted really good since I'd already been taking photographs for the last hour at the Immergrun Golf Course.

DiSepio Institute for Rural Health and Wellness
This is the first opportunity I've had to photograph the building since the exterior construction was completed.

Stairwell architecture interpreted by: Me

Barb Dean of Centre Hall watches as her husband, Jim, cleans up their nicely turned-out 1955 Ford Vickey at the Car Show held at the skeet range at Prince Gallitzin State Park in conjunction with Mountain Days.

Interior of the 1955 Ford Vicky.

Face in a mirror.

Mahlon "Duckie" Duck of Boalsburg, polishes the engine of his 2001 400 hp Z06 Corvette. Charlie Verdavoir of Patton, PA executed the airbrushing that you see on the interior of the hood.

1947 Ford 2-door
I think this was the prettiest car at the show. Never understood why they stopped putting skirts on these beauties. Let's face it, everything looks good in a skirt.

I really wasn't gonna bother with anything other than the car show at Mountain Days this year, but decided at the last minute that since the sun was shining, that I'd run down to Sharon's Pizza to see what I could shoot at the children's petting zoo. I got there in time to catch young Master Tom feeding Porterhouse, a three week old Guernsey.

In Memoriam

J.D. Kirkpatrick
September 29, 1947 - July 25, 2009
"Save me a Plank"

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Native American Dance 2009

For the last twelve years, the Native American Dance Competition has been held at the DelGrosso's Amusement Park, formerly known as Bland's Park, in Tipton, PA. We missed a few of our old friends this year but made a few new ones, so the tradition goes on.

One person that we missed was John Pingree who had to return home to Wyoming because his mother became ill. Had he been able to attend the POW WOW, John would have been this year's Head Man Dancer. Filling in for John was Brian General who was the Head Man Dancer a few year's ago. One of the things that stood out to us was the number of young dancers this year and the number of new-borns that made their first POW WOW so the tradition goes on.

A vendor's Yorkie strikes a pose at one of the entrances to the POW WOW at the park.

All of the vendors at the dance competition are by invitation only.

While shooting the previous picture I watched this Common Green Darner land on some of the merchandise in the stand.

Brian General, Head Man Dancer

Dawnita Neconie, Head Lady Dancer.

John Norwood, United States Flag Bearer.

Aaron Hedgepath, Indian Nations Flag Bearer.

7Dec09 We are working on restoring the videos
While I was shooting still pictures, I setup the video camera to capture the action of the dancers during the noon grand entry.

Black Bear: Host Southern Drum, Echohawk Neconie, Lead Singer.

07Dec09 -- We are working on restoring the videos.
Although not as much action as the dancers, here is a video of Black Bear.

Smooth Town: Host Northern Drum, Adrian Harjo, Lead Singer.

07Dec09 -- We are working on restoring the videos.
And, in the spirit of fairness, here is Smooth Town.

Ghost Dancer, Charles Eagle Tail.

After watching this young man dance over the last several years I think that one day I'll see him as the Head Man Dancer at the POW WOW.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Two Forms of Theatre

Welcome to the new look of Life of a Small Town Photographer. We updated the layout because it gives us the liberty to make changes to the design as we progress. The black background allows the photographs to pop on the page. Let us know what you think.

We start this week's blog by going back in history about 230 years. Over the past weekend, Fort Roberdeau in Blair County, PA, held it's annual Revolutionary War Days. Fort Roberdeau is located in Sinking Valley, Blair County, PA and holds programs almost year around.

We like to arrive at these events early in the day, before the rest of the tourists. That way, we can get photographs that portray the re-enactors on their own.

By using both a sepia filter and muted colors, I tried to make these photographs more like they might have been done if there were cameras around during the late 1700s. Hindsight being everything, I would have been better off doing this presentation as paintings which would have been more fitting for the time period.

Encampment outside of the Fort walls. We were there early in the morning, so many of the re-enactors were having their breakfast.

When cooking over an open flame with dutch ovens, supper has to be started early in the morning so it's ready for the final meal of the day.

A militiaman cleans his long rifle preparing it for use at a moment's notice.

Tory soldiers march off on their way to church.

Company drummer setting the cadence for church call.

Tory Regimental officer calling the heathens to church one final time before the services begin.

Fort Roberdeau black smith shop. My last visit to the fort, when I was out touring on my motorcycle, was included in the post for 26 September 2007.

Revolutionary woman.

Making bread pudding on an open hearth. Altogether this process takes about four hours.

The paymaster for the Regiment prepares to distribute the pay.

Militia men prepare to hoist the colors prior to the paymaster distribution of the pay.

The Colonial Army officer awaits the pay for himself and his men from the pay master.

The military and militia await their pay. Notice the separation between the regular troops and the militia which consisted of the local farmers and frontiersmen.

The next three shots are portraits of some of the local farmers, trappers, and frontiersmen.

Re-enactors come from across Pennsylvania to take part in this encampment.

The 42nd Regiment of the Royal Highlanders. The flag on the left are the colors of King George III and the colors on the right are those of the 42nd Royal Highlanders.

As far as I know, I'm the only photographer that showed up in Westover to cover the Lewis and Clark Circus for any of the newspapers or the tv. Granted, this isn't the Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus, but still, when was the last time you saw any kind of circus in your town. I really had plans to go over to Westover to see the whole process of setting up, performing and then tearing down again, but the weather on Saturday was the pits. This delayed our visit to Roberdeau to Sunday so I only got to shoot about two hours on Monday afternoon.

It's 3 o'clock Monday afternoon, 13 July 2009, and the circus is just starting to come alive in preparation for the 5 o'clock show.

Lewis and Clark Circus ticket window.

Flags flowing in the breeze overtop of a food stand.

Humans weren't the only ones preparing themselves for the circus visitors after an afternoon nap.

Billy Goat.

The one ring circus shot with available light.

$15 means the same in any language.

Crowd walking thru the midway.

Spiderman fan gets a ride on a camel - 2 1/2 minutes for $5.

Father and son try their skills at the Strong Man Ring a Bell.

The excited crowd awaits the start of the circus inside the tent.

Bill Brickle, Ringmaster.

Miss Elizabeth does 360s on her bicycle held over the head of Armando Ayala, Sr.


Joey the Clown.

Joseph Ayala balances on twelve cups over three tiers.