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Boot the Cowboy



“Boot the Cowboy” was shot on April 6, 2013 at the Grand Canyon Ranch, which is located just west of Grand Canyon’s West Rim, close to Meadview, Arizona. ...
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“Boot the Cowboy” was shot on April 6, 2013 at the Grand Canyon Ranch, which is located just west of Grand Canyon’s West Rim, close to Meadview, Arizona. “Boot,” as he calls himself, is a working cowboy on the ranch. The ranch also accommodates a limited number of guests, many who visit the nearby Grand Canyon to the east and Lake Meade to the west.

Boot, who I met for the first time that weekend, is a really cool, friendly person and he was game when I asked him if we can do some shooting. I had my professional gear with me when visiting my family who were on a road trip, but I was naturally more set on shooting in and around the Grand Canyon that weekend. Luckily I also brought a Speedlight with me…

The gear used for the shot was a Nikon D800 with a Nikkor 24-70mm f-2.8G set at 50mm. ISO 100, f-3.5 and 1-500 sec. It was shot in mid-morning so I had somewhat dragging light coming from camera right and had an assistant hold a Nikon Speedlight SB-600 flash to camera left to lighten up the shade and for improved contrast. The image was post-processed in Lightroom 4 and converted to black-and-white using a Nik Silver FX Pro 2 plugin.
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Awards

Contest Finalist in Beards and Mustaches Photo Contest
Featured
Contest Finalist in Portraits in Black and White Photo Contest
Featured
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Superb Composition
Top Choice
karthikbhat noneoftheabove kurioko Fotozap TracyD ruebusch tedyandeau +92
Absolute Masterpiece
Devanpayne candidqueen Photosbypelle feliciawhitt davidphotojunkymccarthy sherrymckinney markharwood +64
Peer Award
billmartin_2615 angelwings_9554 photophenom ileanaandreagmezgavinoser NancyFlemingPhotography mypStudio7 RTDPhotos +53
Outstanding Creativity
FGHeron johnmeredith victorninestrong roseanneschmidt kathyingallinera keithfey KonstantinSokolov +41
Exceptional Contrast
RichardReames DuttonPhotography mario_el mariond quentinrobertson arthurerusu drewer1er +19
Superior Skill
CarlAage michaelegan jackgreene Teo_Antunovic jerry19672002 Pixelbug wallat +6
All Star
FeatherstonePhotography JanetDaniel anthonywynn jdd48jr marymwarnerthomas Dacemac quimribas +4
Magnificent Capture
brendadbusskohl Resquin lukeburnley MegaMarty suzanewhitney hugh SamyStClair
Genius
colorblindxs2 jamilhalaby
Jaw Dropping
fotex

Emotions

Impressed
GiustiniArt

Top Ranks

Creative Boundaries Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
A Single Subject Photo ContestTop 20 rank
Inspired By The World Photo ContestTop 10 rank
Inspired By The World Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
Monochrome Masters ProjectTop 10 rank
Monochrome Masters ProjectTop 10 rank week 1
An Unforgettable Adventure Photo ContestTop 10 rank
Beards and Mustaches Photo ContestTop 10 rank
Beards and Mustaches Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 2
Beards and Mustaches Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 6Top 10 rank
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 6Top 10 rank week 1
Everything In Black And White Photo ContestTop 20 rank
Everything In Black And White Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
Black And White Compositions Photo Contest vol2Top 10 rank
Black And White Compositions Photo Contest vol2Top 10 rank week 2
Black And White Compositions Photo Contest vol2Top 10 rank week 1
People At Work Photo ContestTop 10 rank
People At Work Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
Once Upon A Time Photo ContestTop 10 rank
Once Upon A Time Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 3Top 10 rank
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 3Top 10 rank week 2
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 3Top 10 rank week 1
World Photography Day Photo ContestTop 10 rank
World Photography Day Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 2
World Photography Day Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
Spectacular Monochromes Photo ContestTop 10 rank
Spectacular Monochromes Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
Black and White Portraits Photo ContestTop 20 rank
Black and White Portraits Photo ContestTop 20 rank week 1
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 2Top 10 rank
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 2Top 10 rank week 2
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 2Top 10 rank week 1
Clash Of The Premiums Photo ContestTop 10 rank
Black and White Masterpieces Photo ContestTop 10 rank
Black and White Masterpieces Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
A Black And White World Photo ContestTop 20 rank
A Black And White World Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 2
A Black And White World Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
The Battle Of Professionals Photo ContestTop 30 rank
The Battle Of Professionals Photo ContestTop 20 rank week 3
The Battle Of Professionals Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 2
The Battle Of Professionals Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
Awesomeness In Black And White Photo ContestTop 10 rank
Awesomeness In Black And White Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 2
Awesomeness In Black And White Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
Blast From The Past Photo ContestTop 20 rank
Blast From The Past Photo ContestTop 20 rank week 2
Blast From The Past Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
Portraits in Black and White Photo ContestTop 10 rank
Portraits in Black and White Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
Adore Noir Volume 4 Photo ContestTop 10 rank
Adore Noir Volume 4 Photo ContestTop 20 rank week 2
Adore Noir Volume 4 Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
Adore Noir Volume 2 Photo ContestTop 30 rank
On Location Photo ContestTop 20 rank
The Need Light Speedlite Tour Photo ContestTop 10 rank
The Need Light Speedlite Tour Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
On Location Photo ContestTop 10 rank week 1
Contrast in Black and White Photo ContestTop 20 rank
27 Comments | Report
JoaoFreire
 
JoaoFreire October 10, 2013
good shot Tyrone
AlanJakarta PRO+
 
AlanJakarta November 18, 2013
Wonderful mono portrait - shame we cannot see his boots. Congratulations.
drakkardarkblade
 
drakkardarkblade November 18, 2013
congrats, fantastic, please take a look at my works
ctoshachjr
 
ctoshachjr November 18, 2013
Con Gratz. He looks like he's where he should be.
rmr731 Platinum
 
rmr731 November 18, 2013
Fantastic shot! Love the light and the feel of this. Feel like I'm in the old west! Congrats on being Featured!
iceman2
 
iceman2 November 18, 2013
Beautiful B&W capture.Congrats!
catini
 
catini November 18, 2013
Great portrait, congrats on your feature!
pranab
 
pranab November 18, 2013
great.
tissa7
 
tissa7 November 18, 2013
great shot and what a character!
JoeS PRO
 
JoeS November 18, 2013
Wow! Well deserved award!
jleiweke
 
jleiweke November 18, 2013
Congrats!
toxictabasco
 
toxictabasco November 18, 2013
Great photo.
jthincmh PRO
 
jthincmh November 18, 2013
Outstanding photo. It should be a prize winner.
murphey PRO+
 
murphey November 18, 2013
Super Portrait !
debhall PRO+
 
debhall November 18, 2013
Awesome pic...congrats on your feature!
Cleanprotein
 
Cleanprotein November 18, 2013
amazing capture!
redwriter Platinum
 
redwriter November 19, 2013
Great b/w shot. Congrats. - Jake
maggiemageemolino
 
maggiemageemolino November 20, 2013
Love it!
Woombaway
 
Woombaway November 22, 2013
Congrats on feature it is an awesome portrait and perfect in B&W
june_coker_428
 
june_coker_428 November 23, 2013
Wonderful photograph
Rideau_Photography PRO
 
Rideau_Photography January 09, 2014
Excellent shot
blueberrydragon
 
blueberrydragon January 05, 2015
Love this!!!!
mustangmark3
 
mustangmark3 January 19, 2015
Very Nice....I have a lot of growing to do. Thanks!
Dacemac PRO+
 
Dacemac January 20, 2015
Superb! Congratulations!
ajwadly
 
ajwadly February 05, 2015
Great shot! Picture is worth a 1000 words
Lostforphotography
 
Lostforphotography November 13, 2015
Beautiful black and white shot. I love it. Really captured a moment here and the story. It is a beauty
MikeSylvester
 
MikeSylvester November 04, 2017
B & W adds historic age to this image!!

Behind The Lens

Location
This photo was taken at the Grand Canyon Ranch, which is a working ranch located just west of the West Rim of the Grand Canyon, near a town called Meadview, in Arizona. The ranch has a number of working cowboys for their horses and cattle and one of them calls himself "Boot," who to me has the ultimate cowboy look, and genuinely so. As I got to know the ranch's cowboys a bit during the weekend I stayed there, one evening I asked Boot is we could do some portraits the next morning and he was game.
Time
It was taken about 10am, when the sun was not too high yet, and it raked the front of the building and his body so it created some nice structure and detail in the photo.
Lighting
As I wasn't sure if I'd have an opportunity to shoot people during this trip to the Grand Canyon, where landscape photography naturally rules, I packed a single Speedlight with me, just in case. It was held camera left by a travel companion, short-lightening the cowboy's face. So in this case, interestingly enough, the sun is shining from camera right, the shadow side of his face.
Equipment
I shot Boot using a Nikon D800 and a Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G lens at 50mm, f/3.5. I shot RAW, handheld at 1/500s at ISO 100 and with a Nikon SB-600 Speedlight wirelessly triggered by a PocketWizard.
Inspiration
I love making portraits of people - particularly environmental portraits - and, of course, the more interesting the person is or looks the more interesting a story you can tell. "Boot" is the real deal and shooting him and some of the other cowboys at the ranch felt more like a documentary shoot than a portrait shoot, but ultimately it's about conveying a story and create emotions in myself and hopefully others who see the photo.
Editing
I process everything I do in Lightroom - from raw conversion to touch up and all the adjustments - and then I often use Nik Software's plugins for whenever I need to go beyond Lightroom. In this case I used Nik Silver Efex Pro for the conversion to black-and-white, also fine tuning the look using the Structure function to pull out the surfaces of the leather est, the jeans and the wood around him.
In my camera bag
If I go on a shoot and don't have to travel light, I pack a Nikon D810 and a D4, a Nikkor 85mm f/1.4G lens (my favorite glass!), and 24-70mm f/2.8G and a 70-200mm f/2.8G VR II zooms. Depending on what I am shooting, if I need to bring artificial lighting I pack either a Speedlight or for bigger jobs a Profoto Pro-7b battery pack with Pro-B heads and a bunch of modifiers, triggered by PocketWizard wireless triggers.
Feedback
I personally love to shoot people using so-called short lighting, meaning that the away-from-the-camera part of their face is the strongest lit. Also having the light coming in from the side, raking the subject, in general pulls out the character of the main subject and the structure of the background. In situations such as this where I had to mix ambient light from the sun with artificial lighting to make the image "pop" and to short-light his face, my recommendation is to simply fix on an f-stop you like for a suitably shallow depth-of-field and then try different shutter speeds to either brighten or darkening the background, to get the balance between the ambient and artificial light you are looking for.

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