Documentary vs. Staged Photography

Over the course of my career, I have worked on many photo shoots for clients where we worked as a team, with great collaboration; with each member of the team bringing their unique skill sets and expertise to the set, resulting in photographs that look exactly how we want them to look. This type of work is usually done for advertising clients, with pre-production meetings where every detail is discussed days or weeks before the shoot begins. The budgets are big, RVs are rented and used as changing rooms and staging areas, caterers set up tents and have food tables set out for the talent and crew. On these shoots, the creative directors and the stylists and the models and hair and make-up people and everyone else are as important to getting great images as the photographer.
The cowboy photographs found on this website were NOT created using that method. Props were NOT brought out for these people to wear or use. This is how cowboys today dress and work. These photographs were made by me, working alone, after being allowed to follow along these men and women as they worked. Without their kindness, generosity, and trust, these photographs would not be possible. They take great pride in who they are, the history of their chosen profession, and the ethics of their culture. They grow food for America.
The majority of this cowboy photography can be found published in various magazines, including Western Horseman, America’s Horse, and American Cowboy. If you need a cowboy photographer that can work in the dust and mud and snow to get images of the real deal, give me a call. Thanks, Walter Workman.