2021 — Cowtown, New Jersey, USA
About this series
The rodeo tradition is disappearing. The Cowtown Rodeo is the longest-running weekly professional rodeo in the USA. For sixty-seven years, Pilesgrove, New Jersey has been host to bull riders, barrel racers, and many other men and women who compete for cash and status on their way to the top of the standings. These cowboys and cowgirls live a tough life. Most of them work a nine-to-five job and then tend the horses and fit the rodeo schedule on top of that. For some, a rodeo may be six hours away – a long drive for just a few seconds ride to glory, and then a six-hour drive home again.
Kids who like the smell of leather and dirt, beauty pageant cowgirls, colorful rodeo clowns, the old-timer who blesses the participants before the rodeo, and the hopeful young cowboy who still dreams of a home on the range – all work together to put on a show for the crowd.
I want these photos to capture the camaraderie among the group. These folks gather and together they entertain the audience for a few hours, but their individual lives make up the backbone of the rodeo. Their lives are an important part of the story.
Chris Scott Snyder graduated from Tyler School of Art at Temple University with a BFA in painting. Her multi-disciplinary career has included, photography, fine art, and cloisonné jewelry for over 40 years. She currently lives and works on Martha’s Vineyard Island as a photographer. Her work seeks to reveal authenticity and honesty in her subjects while using lighting and post-production techniques to blend fine art with photography.