Watching pow wow competitions all day for several day can get to be too much of a good thing, especially if you have a short attention span (think kids, and most social media addicts). I wasn’t bored with the dancing when I came across these kids on the edge of the arena, but watching them fill balloons with air and then letting them go shooting up into the air provided another kind of entertainment. They were obviously having great fun.
In this shot, while the three kids in the foreground were just getting ready to release a balloon, their friend in the background is waiting for his to come falling down after expelling all its air some ten or twelve feet above him.
I think the sunglasses really made this cool dancer’s look. Seeing him reminded me of a story I once heard about a prank the Indian extras played during the filming of the movie Little Big Man. I have no idea if the story is true but supposedly it happened when a scene was being filmed that called for a line of warriors in warpaint to ride up and pause threateningly all along a ridge overlooking the settlers or wagon train or whatever below. They rode up as planned but when the cameras zoomed in they found they were all wearing mirrored aviator sunglasses. I hope the director got a good laugh before asking them to shoot it again, sans sunglasses.
More nice headdresses. The guy in the middle and the young woman barely visible next to him were something similar to the king and queen of the pow wow (although I’m sure that’s not what they’re really referred to as). The lead the Grand Entry procession and after a turn around the arena were being presented to the officials in this shot.
Just another face in the crowd.
A number of the shots I took at the pow wow showed a blur of movement across most of the image due to a shutter speed that was long enough to not be able to freeze the action due to the rapid movement of the dancers. Yet in a surprisingly large percentage of those, one dancer’s face comes through quite sharp amidst all the movement.
A key component to a pow wow is of course the drummers and singers. Like this guy, they do not generally wear regalia, rather they dress in regular street clothes. We were standing about twenty feet from this particular circle of drummers and the sound they were putting out was impressively loud; I think my chest was actually noticeably compressing with the low bass vibrations put out by the drum. It’s hard to figure how this woman and her child could sit so passively right next to them. (The young girl may have her fingers in her ear. If so I guess that’s a reaction.)