During the United States Hunter Jumper Association Annual Meetings, I’m responsible for photographing the receptions and parties. Prior to the event, I carefully prepare my equipment, map out the rooms for lighting and proper angles and stash extra gear if I have an equipment malfunction. These evenings are sometimes stressful but usually enjoyable as people generally like having photos taken with their friends.
Tonight, though, I have to admit I switched sides from party worker to party goer. In hindsight, I think I crossed over the line when I met the nice professional photographer party hosts Britton and Sheila Sanderford had hired. She and I spent the first half hour of the party shooting together, but then when we sat down to dinner and the wine was poured, I thought, “Why not?” It was actually irresistible. In the 20+ years I’ve traveled to various annual meetings all over the country, this “New Orléans Style Dinner and Dance Party” was by far the best meeting party I’ve ever attended.
So, for the rest of the night I wore a mask, danced with my friends and fellow USHJA staffers (camera in hand) and roamed around the room shooting photos while I thoroughly enjoyed the festivities, collected beads and joined the dance line. I took so many photos that my camera battery died (hard to do with a D3s) and counted more than 400 fun and useable images during the editing process. It was one of those nights that will be hard to match during future meetings, when my job morphed into a party and my photos actually turned out better than I could have ever expected.