Cowboys and Photogs
Slideshow in Los Angeles

Montana Fair - The Extended Version


Kenneth Jarecke, Contact Press Images

Call it what you like, the director's cut or extended version, regardless it always runs the risk of being long and boring. With that in mind, my own version of the Montana Fair is now online here (if you dare).

I got it down to eighty images from the 132 selects. Somehow we lost one on the way, so there are 79 waiting there for you to see. Oh, the one above isn't included, so let's call that one number 80.

Here's the essay, words and pictures in the New York Times Lens blog. The comments have been pretty awesome so far. Lots of people I really respect have weighed in.

I must say, it was a wonderful experience working with photographer/editor James Estrin of the Times on this project.

Thanks Jim!


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Tom Leininger

Would you be willing to talk about your editing process or workflow a little bit? Did you wait until you were dong shooting and edit everything all at once? Or, did you edit as you shot?

I am curious to see how other handle the editing process.

Tom Gralish

Ken, after seeing so many photo "essays" on state fairs comprised of posed portraits it was so refreshing to see your take on it.

Who knows, maybe the kiddie pony ride operator would still have scratched his stomach (#35 in your edit) if he were standing between another photographer's painted canvas, tripod and softboxes, but I doubt it. And could they have brought together a better couple than your accidentally side-by side bright-blue checked tattooed lady and baby-blue checked cowboy (#3 on Times. #38 on your edit)? Would the chicken girl (Times #8, your #28) have yawned if she were pulled from the judging pen to pose with her bird? And the young texting hog girl (Times #11 & your #26) and bull rider (your #50)? They might have been on their cell phones while posing for another photographer, but it would have been while the strobes were being re-positioned.

Those were wonderful moments. So great you took the time to hang out, notice and share them. Thanks.

Kenneth Jarecke

Tom L,
Yes, I'll do that. It might take me a couple days.


I hate to say it, but the transitions on your portfolio site are too slow, which is a shame, because the images are very nice.

If you could remove the transitions altogether and maybe add a slideshow button it would be perfect.

Anyway, keep up the good work, both on the blog and photography in general.

Carl Griffin

I love your essay on Lens and your extended version here. I especially like the fact that here your photography can be viewed in full detail on a my 24" LCD. I think the typical tiny online images one is usually stuck with for even the very best photography is diminishing photography as an art. Onscreen viewing accounts for the vast majority of photo viewing, and no online image 640 pixels wide can stir the soul. I'm not sure pro photographers, in general, have really embraced this reality. It's no longer about print or prints . . .

Tom Leininger

Thanks Ken. Take your time. I look forward to it.

Sandro Siragusa

The symmetry of the shot of the boy and man wearing cowboy hats that almost touched reminded me of that Winogrand shot at the Texas State Fair:

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Took me time to read all the comments, but I enjoyed the article.

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