The Greeley Stampede through my lens
Ryan Summerlin July 14, 2014
Speaking about sports, one often hears that something happened in the “blink of an eye.”
That is generally accepted to mean that something happened very quickly, and if you blinked, you just might have missed it.
So how fast is the “blink of an eye?”
The human eye blinks at between 3/10 and 4/10 of a second.
Fast, yes — but it is an eternity when you consider that a professional sports photographer uses a camera that can capture of a slice of time in 1/8,000 of a second.
And those long lenses that a professional uses — without getting into a lot of technical mumbo-jumbo, you can think of them as telescopes.
Sports photographers use lenses that are between 200 to 600 millimeters long.
Without the technical stuff again, the wonderful camera in the iPhone has a lens equivalent of around 35 millimeters.
To top it all off, a middle-of-the-road camera used by sports photographers can cycle eight times in a second.
All of these things go to explaining why we are so fascinated by sports photography, especially in a sport like rodeo where there are many moving parts competing for your attention.
As fans we tend to look at the whole of an event and miss the details.
Did you notice that CJ Vondette lost her right stirrup during her Finals run, but went on to win the event?
Did you really see the amazing recoveries that Cody Taton made to score 86 points on his Saddle Bronc ride in the Finals?
Have you been able to see the effect that the G–Forces of being slammed back onto the rump of a bucking horse have on a Bareback rider’s face?
Since winning or losing in a rodeo event is based either on time or measured against a known standard, many rodeo pictures of a given event look pretty much the same.
These pictures taken at the 2014 Greeley Stampede are not like that.
They are my “slices of time” — and I hope that you enjoy them. ❖