Carnival Time

As the weather across the country starts to cool down, many states and counties take advantage of the cooler season and hold their annual fairs. This usually coincides with activities like a rodeo, art contests, chili cook-offs, and other events that bring in the crowds. But one thing they all have is the carnival. What would a fair be without a carnival? The rides, games, lights, food and people all create a unique atmosphere that can overload the senses in an intoxicating way. 
 

As the weather cool down, states and counties hold their annual fairs. This usually coincides with activities like a rodeo, art contests, chili cook-offs, and other events that bring in the crowds. But one thing they all have is the carnival. Photo by Tim Stanley Photography.

Carnival Lights

If you have spent anytime looking through my images, you know that I enjoy large subjects and wide-angle lenses. Recently I’ve tried to step out of my comfort zone and look at smaller pieces of the bigger picture. I don’t always like what I shoot, but it’s been a trend I’ll keep practicing. 

These lights are part of a ride at last year’s Houston Rodeo carnival. The lights and converging lines caught my eye. Okay, it was mostly the lights, but it does make a nice pattern. Here are a few other images from carnivals over the past year or so too.
  

These lights are part of a ride at last year's Houston Rodeo carnival. The lights and converging lines caught my eye. Okay, it was mostly the lights, but it does make a nice pattern. Photo by Tim Stanley Photography.

 

Order a print of this photo.

Pleasure Pier at Night

Carnivals are fun anytime, but they are best enjoyed at night. The Galveston Historic Pleasure Pier really comes to life at night. When things get dark, the lights turn on and it comes to life. I have not been on the pier itself yet, but I think a trip back out to Galveston is in my future.

The Galveston Pleasure Pier at Night. Photo by Tim Stanley Photography.

Creep Show

It’s about this time of the year that people look forward to getting scared. Odds are, there is a haunted house or two in your town right now, getting folks in the mood for the Halloween. Carnivals get in the act too, as most seem to have a ride that tries to scare you just a bit. For the kids, it’s a good thing, but I don’t need a haunted house or carnival to scare me anymore. I just look at the bill at the gas pump.
 

It's about this time of the year that people look forward to getting scared. Odds are, there is a haunted house or two in your town right now, getting folks in the mood for the Halloween. Carnivals get in the act too, as most seem to have a ride that tries to scare you just a bit. Photo by Tim Stanley Photography.

Rave Wave

One thing I enjoy about carnivals is the decoration and artwork of the rides.  With all the moving lights and paintings, it’s like a large art exhibition, on steroids.  It’s also a great opportunity to people watch, especially in a city like Houston. You find all walks of life, from all over the world. Just don’t watch too closely (especially if you are carrying your camera) or someone might think you’re a stalker. 

King Neptune also enjoys people watching as he looks over the crowd above a ride that “waves” up and down and around. Here are a few other images from carnivals I’ve attended over the last few years.

King Neptune looks over the crowd above a carnival ride called the Rave Wave. Photo by Tim Stanley Photography.

Evolution

Though this very large ride is called Evolution, it should be Revolution, as it revolves around the center mounting point. It’s just one of many large rides you find at state fairs and large carnivals. As it revolves around the center, the riders swing in a circle on the end also. It’s a great ride to help you lose weight after supper. 

The rodeo started last weekend here in Houston and alongside the stadium is a huge carnival, ready to entertain you before or after the show. These images are just a few that I shot last year, spending the day walking around enjoying the sites, while taking a few shots now and then. The hardest things about that assignment were difficult lighting conditions and people getting in the way. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll learn to take a photo with people in it. (My wife says that would be a good thing).

 

Though this very large ride is called Evolution, it should be Revolution, as it revolves around the center. It's a great ride to help you lose weight after supper. Photo by Tim Stanley Photography

 

 

 

Order a print of this photo.

Super Slide

As far back as I can remember, the slide was always one of the top things to play on at the park. Yes, there were the swings and the jungle jim, but the slide was unique. It was the one item that stood taller than the others on the playground. If you think about it, it was the training ground for roller coasters. It was a long slow climb to the top, then you get a quick glimpse of the view from up high. You looked down with second thoughts, but you let go anyway and whoosh, down you went. 

This carnival super slide can handle eight sliders at one time. At a dollar or two per trip, someone is making a lot of money.
 

This carnival super slide can handle eight sliders at one time. At a dollar or two a trip, someone is making a lot of money. Photo by Tim Stanley Photography.

 

 

 

Order a print of this photo.