I'm Kristina.  I specialize in equine photography and capturing the bond between equestrians and their four-legged best friends.

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Exploring the Authentic West: My Unforgettable Trip to Scott City, Kansas

July 2, 2023

Recently, I embarked on an incredible adventure to Scott City, Kansas, for the West of East workshop hosted by Mira 3 Photography and Open Triangle Photography. Little did I know that this journey would exceed all my expectations, immersing me in the true essence of the Wild West. From meeting friendly barn dogs and cats (and their kittens, my ultimate weakness) to capturing breathtaking moments amidst thunderstorms, every day of the workshop brought new thrills and unforgettable memories.

Black and white photograph of a cowgirl kneeling in front of a horse with her arm outstretched to pet her nose in Scott City, Kansas.

Day 1: Arriving to Kansas

As we arrived at Pyramid Ranch, the warm welcome from the barn dogs and cats instantly made us feel at home. Eager to explore, we trekked up the road, camera in hand, to photograph the cowboys and cowgirls riding through the picturesque canyons. Randy, one of the talented cowboys, showcased his roping skills, daring photographers to capture the perfect shot amidst the action-packed atmosphere. The ever-changing weather patterns added an element of surprise, forcing us to adapt our plans accordingly.

Photograph of a cowboy sitting on his horse in the canyons in Scott City, Kansas.
Photograph of a cowboy throwing a rope at the photographer.
Photograph of a cowgirl riding a dappled gray horse through a field in Scott City, Kansas.

Day 2: Cowboy Camp and Artistry

The second day of the workshop started with Daryl and Randy setting up a cowboy camp on the vast 14,000-acre property. Daryl’s old truck became the centerpiece of a striking photograph, while Randy entertained us with hilarious stories and expertly braided a hackamore. We also had the privilege of witnessing Daryl’s craftsmanship firsthand as he carved intricate patterns into leather for a saddle at his renowned Waite Custom Saddles in Colorado. Additionally, we captured the artistry of Trey Wilcox as he meticulously trimmed and crafted custom shoes for horses, appreciating the beauty of hot shoeing.

Black and white photograph of a cowboy leaning against the side of his truck with his arms and legs crossed.
Photograph of a cowboy braiding a hackamore inside of a cream colored tent.
Photograph of a cowboy carving leather while framed by some of his tools.
Black and white photograph of a farrier pressing a hot shoe to a horse's hoof, leading to a lot of smoke coming off of the hoof in Kansas.

Day 2: Monumental Moments

Our third shoot on the second day brought us to Monument Rocks, where a cowboy couple dressed in their finest attire awaited our lenses. With their faithful dog by their side, they posed amidst the awe-inspiring rock formations. To add an extra touch of authenticity, they later brought their majestic horses into the scene, creating stunning compositions against the dramatic backdrop. As the sun began to set, we quickly changed outfits and locations to chase thunderstorms across the expansive property, capturing the raw power of nature.

Black and white photograph of a couple.  The woman is leaning against her husband and his arms are wrapped around her.  His head is tilted so that his cowboy hat covers her eyes.
Photograph of a couple posing together in front of the Monument Rocks in Kansas.  The woman is standing behind her husband holding on to his arm.
Black and white photograph of a couple sitting in the grass with their dog in front of a grazing horse.
Photograph of a cowgirl riding her horse down a steep hill in front of a dark thunderstorm in Kansas.

Day 3: Sunrise Serenade

Embracing an early start on the third day, we were treated to a breathtaking sunrise that painted the sky with hues of gold and pink. The ranch owner and a friend saddled up, leading us on a thrilling chase after cattle and playful moments in a water hole within the sand pit. As the sun reached its zenith, we ventured to the nearby river, immersing ourselves in the refreshing waters before bidding farewell to the enchanting landscapes of Scott City, Kansas.

A silhouette of a cowboy on his horse with the sun shining near the horse's tail.
A photograph of a cowboy and cowgirl riding their horses at sunrise.
A black and white photograph of a cowgirl riding her horse through water.
A photograph of a cowboy and cowgirl riding their horses through a herd of cattle in Kansas.

My trip to Scott City for the West of East workshop was an absolute delight, filled with heartwarming encounters, exhilarating moments, and captivating photographs. From the adventures with cowboys and cowgirls, the mastery of artisans, to the majestic Monument Rocks and stunning sunrises, every aspect of this experience showcased the authentic charm of the Wild West. I returned home with a newfound appreciation for the beauty of Kansas and a treasure trove of memories that will forever be etched in my heart.

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I create images that people will love for a lifetime, transforming fleeting moments into enduring works of art. It's not just about taking digital photographs to save on a phone and forget; it's about crafting pieces that capture the essence of the moment, evoking emotion and joy every time they are viewed.

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