Thursday, October 28, 2010

Kentucky Machine Gun Shoot

According to FBI statistics, an all-time high of 14 million firearms were sold in the United States in 2009. Sales surged following the election of President Barack Obama as fears of an assault weapons ban mounted, bringing the per-capita number of civilian owned firearms to 90 for every 100 American citizens according to a study by the Graduate Institute of International Studies. While Americans have traditionally united around interests like religion, sport, or politics, social circles cemented by a common bond of firearm ownership are an increasingly reality. The Fall 2010 Knob Creek Machinegun Shoot in West Point, Ky. showcases privately-owned arsenals of restricted "Class III" fully automatic assault rifles, belt-fed machineguns, and large calibre rifles. The weekend is a trans-generational celebration of all things gun.


Participants in the 2010 Knob Creek Machinegun Shoot are seen on the firing line during a late afternoon session at the Knob Creek Range in West Point, Ky. Enthusiasts fired volleys downrange from belt-fed machineguns spanning the past century as well as large .50 calibre sniper rifles throughout the day on Saturday, October 9, 2010.


Sunday, October 24, 2010

World Equestrian Games

In September I had the privilege of covering the first two days of the World Equestrian Games for the New York Times. This year was the first ever that the WEG were held in the United States, and what state would be more appropriate to host than Kentucky?

Day two was the endurance competition, a rigorous 100 mile marathon for horses and their riders. At the end of each 20 mile segment the horses were doused with cold water to lower their heart rates, then were inspected by veterinarians before being allowed to return to the course.

Covering endurance was a logistical challenge. 30 photographers crammed into two 12-passenger vans and raced toward privately owned farms, hoping to catch the leading horses riding through the scenic Eastern Kentucky landscapes.

Being able to compete against so many experienced photographers from all over the world was a treat, as well as meeting photojournalists whose work I admire like Caren Firouz (Senior Photojournalist for Reuters in Iran) and Larry W. Smith (Contract photographer for European Pressphoto Agency in the Midwest United States)

An early morning Dressage work out for a member of the Italian Equestrian team on the opening day of the 2010 Alltech World Equestrian Games in Lexington, Ky., Saturday, September 25, 2010. (Luke Sharrett for the New York Times)


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Rosine Barn Jamboree

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Bluegrass on a fall Kentucky evening at the Rosine Barn Jamboree. Rosine, Ky.


Friday, October 15, 2010

Back to school

Here are some of my favorite photos I've taken since being back at school. I'm looking forward to posting a couple of essays in the coming days as well. Thanks for looking!

Indiana Hoosiers sophomore punter Adam Pines of Highland Park, Ill. looks on during the third quarter of the their away game against Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, Ky., Saturday, September 18, 2010. Indiana beat Western 38-21. (Luke Sharrett/The College Heights Herald)


Monday, October 4, 2010

Eight days on a train

Last month I had a week and a half between the end of my internship and the beginning of school, so I decided to do what any normal person would: take an eight-day transcontinental train trip across the United States.

Day One: Amtrak's Southern Crescent at Kemper Street Station in Lynchburg, Va.