So what did I choose to write about, when I finally sat down? You'd think the Guide would be a natural topic, but in fact I wanted a break from that very intense submersion. All of the subjects I could blog about -- restored saddles, rivers in Florida, a visit with Kathy Moody!, my Carol Howard tack collection, the TSII logo -- seemed too large, too complex to take on (at the moment). Pawing through the files, I found a ready-made cache: a photo session taken all the way back in September 2005, eleven years ago, of a beautiful saddle and in a very special place. Prior to leaving for Colorado, I uploaded all the pix, so I could work on it later -- hurray for draft posts!
What made this shooting session special was the venue. Away up in the Quehanna Wilderness Area, set aside originally as a nuclear buffer (!) but today a state forest, there is a wildlife watching platform off Wykoff Road intersection. It had opened not long ago and we had seen it in passing but never visited. Now we had the perfect excuse to check itout.
I really wanted a barn-like background for these pix, but didn't have access to a real barn. The openness of the platform would give a unique lighting, while the wooden beams would give a beautiful warm tone to everything. The cleanliness of the place was perfect for models.
The usual positioning challenges ensued. Going downhill?
Losing your head (and tail!) against a dark background?
This horse is a test. She (yes, it's a she) was my first and still my only Stone factory test. I've been told she's a Sparrow test. Since these pix were taken, she has been glossed. I named her Khaiphana.
A close up. The saddle strings were hung on tiny dees (Rio Rondo product) which were hung on pinned lace under some kind of concho. Again, I'm not completely sure whether the conchos were Rio Rondos. They look like they are.
I'm not sure if this was the final blanket; obviously, there is a gap for the serape which this saddle does not have. One often has to make do with what one has. This blanket was so much better in quality than anything else I had on hand that I must've chosen to go ahead with the shoot.
Other news: As mentioned, hopefully soon (a couple of weeks) more regular (as in, 1 or 2 weeks between) posts will resume! I have lots of subjects but not lots of time. Much adventure has been had, and great good has come of it, but the end of our long trip is in sight. I will try to keep the TSII FaceBook more or less up to date. Sneak hint: A pair of auction reins is in the making!