Prairie Island Dakota Days Wacipi Celebration

Many years ago, Rochester hosted a Pow-Wow. My husband and I went there thinking we could take some photos. I didn’t know anything about Pow-Wow, and I wasn’t serious in photographing at the time. It turned out to be a small one. We didn’t stay long. I took less than 10 photos on that day.

Two days ago, my friend JT told me about the Prairie Island Dakota Days Wacipi Celebration at Welch. Yesterday we drove an hour to be there. I still don’t know too much about Pow-Wow. One lady told me a little bit about their dances like southern Indians danced clockwise (if I remember it right) and the other dance counterclockwise. She told me the accessories on their cloth indicate something. The music was very loud. It was hard to carry a conversation.

It was a fun night. I saw cute kids, talented dancers, excellent drummers and singers. I witnessed beauty, courage, determination, and love. On our way home, I started chanting. My husband told me to be quiet so he could focus on driving.

dancer1s

dancer2s

drummer1s

kid1s

kid2s

yman1s

mans

womans

love1s

I, apparently, have taken too many photos. So sorry… 😉

kidfs

Thanks for visiting my blog.

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About Helen C

A retired computer programmer who loves writing and photographing, and has managed to publish a YA novel "Jin-Ling’s Two Left".
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42 Responses to Prairie Island Dakota Days Wacipi Celebration

  1. Adhika says:

    I like the second picture the best, Helen. The shutter speed is slow enough to capture the movement of some part of the dress. I think it would be even better at even slower shutter speed (at which you probably want a tripod :P)

    The lady’s picture is a classic headshot, the focus is spot on, and the lighting is pretty. I could see this in black & white with a lot more contrast. The second to last photo is just so precious. I love that shot, too! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Good morning, Adhika. It is a 3 day event. Ideally, a beginner like me could take photos on the first day and after reviewing the photos, go back to take more photos (with a different setting maybe… it depends on what he learned from the first day). And then do it again for the third day if necessary. But most of us have to balance our passion with our lives (and work) so this is it for me this time.
      When I reviewed my photos, I have a couple of feedbacks for myself. (1) I should take a couple with slow shutter speed. the picture will be blurred, but it may be interesting. I should at least try. (2) I should use Aperture mode more. Since most of the time, people were moving, I tried program mode and shutter speed mode. But the moving speed wasn’t too fast, so Aperture mode should work very well.
      So, I agree with you (on slower shutter speed) totally.
      The black and white suggestion is interesting. I had questioned about that for a split second, and decided that since everything was so colorful, maybe black and white is not a good choice. After reading your comment, I definitely will give it a try. Thanks.
      Wish you were still here. I am sure you would enjoy this a lot!
      Have a wonderful day!

      Like

      • neihtn2012 says:

        You could always use software to convert a color photo to black and white. Personally, I like color, so I find these colorful images very enjoyable for viewing.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Helen C says:

          Thanks, Hien. I read somewhere that it’s better to use software to convert a color photo to black+white, than setting the camera to take B+W photos. I do use software to convert because it’s more convenient. Since these photos were so colorful, I wasn’t consider to convert any to B&W, but after reading Adhika’s comment, I did convert the old woman’s photo into B&W (since it has less color 😉 and I like it too. Very interesting!
          Thanks again. Have a wonderful evening.

          Like

  2. Dalo 2013 says:

    Fantastic portraits Helen ~ very well done capturing such a wide range of faces/emotions/eyes. Beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thank you, Randall. It was hard to select photos since I took 200 probably. I did slow down my pace: aim and wait for the moment, and click, which was an improvement from before. It was beautiful in every direction… Every person can take many good photos there. It would be nice to able to see other photographers’ photos. I saw 2 or 3 serious photographers out there. 😉
      Have a great day!

      Like

  3. sunsetdragon says:

    amazing shots of the pow wow.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. sunsetdragon says:

    Love the photos of the little ones especially the last little guy who I would call Little Bear due to his look on his face.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thank you, Ruth. Isn’t he cute? I was afraid he would challenge me for a fight – he can easily beat me. Ha. Wish I could talk to them. They were busy for a dance competition. Little ones all received some money and they were so happy. I had a wonderful time.

      Like

  5. Mabel Kwong says:

    Amazing portrait shots, Helen. I love the look on the little girl’s face. Clearly she was enjoying the celebrations and loving every moment. So sporting of her to smile at the camera for you…not sure if the boy in the last photo wanted to pose for you but that is a great shot 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. pike says:

    Stunning and lovely photos, thank you for sharing, Helen!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thank you, Pike. I have a confession… every time I looked at your photo (and some other bloggers’), in my mind, I saw a serious professional photographer behind the camera. I wasn’t that way. I took photos whenever I saw something I liked, but I didn’t go out of my way seeking for possible good photos. This time at the pow wow, I felt very different. I really wanted taking photos. And I liked whom I had become! 😉
      Have a wonderful day!

      Liked by 1 person

      • pike says:

        Wow, yes, very nice to hear, Helen! But you really don’t know how many bad photos I’ll take and have taken all my years 😀 ! Take care of you and your skill, I’m glad for you! Thanks, have a happy week! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Wow, you got some wonderful pictures on this day!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. loisajay says:

    Helen–you did NOT take too many photos! These are beautiful! First, I loved the little girl, then the old woman…oh! the baby! And the boy with the frowny face. And the colors… absolutely wonderful.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Marie says:

    Lovely shots. And I say keep chanting away!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Marie. Well… I didn’t tell the whole story. It was after 10 pm at night and there was a road construction – many of those orange cones on the road. One second we had to switch to the other side of the road and next we had to switch back. It was not a good driving condition 😉 But the music was so loud and exciting. I couldn’t get it out of my mind 😉
      Another interesting thing is that after I switch to a new camera and lens, my confidence has increase a lot. The new camera/lens is more forgiven for hand-shake, and the images are much sharper than before. I didn’t expect such difference.
      Thanks again. Good night.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. lumar1298 says:

    What lovely vibrant colors…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Yes, I was quite surprised. I didn’t remember seeing such vibrant colors in my previous experience. At first, I could only see colors, nothing else – not people, tree… only colors. It took me a little while to adjust 😉

      Like

  11. Sue says:

    Love, love, love all of these! So happy you took “too many” photos- more for us to enjoy! My husband also asks me to be quiet when I sing along with a song on the radio- maybe I will try chanting next time! Haha!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Sue. Just find out a couple of pow-wow radio stations. Maybe we can chant (sing?) together after I have some practices 😉 I find native American’s music is quite energetic, and I like that.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. restlessjo says:

    Great portraits, Helen! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  13. treerabold says:

    Beautiful pictures!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. rommel says:

    OMG! I would so so so love to attend a Pow Wow. I would have so much enjoyment taking pictures and just witnessing it, as I imagine you did too. OMG! This is one of my life’s mission. I want to interrogate them, ask them about different representations on their costume designs. I’m fascinated by their costumes and customs. You gotta be delighted to have been there.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Rommel. It was a quite interesting experience. I truly enjoyed it. Not sure when you will be back to U.S. Powwows.com has some information you may find interesting.
      Have a wonderful day!

      Like

  15. Dalo 2013 says:

    Wonderful series, showing a side of true American pride and history ~ in September the Umatilla Tribe in Oregon put together a week of cultural events and history and this is just what your photos bring to mind. Such a diverse set of photos, from portraits to action. Beautiful in every way.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Beautiful and diverse series, Helen 🙂

    It’s so vibrant out there, a photographer’s delight I feel.

    The last image is simply adorable for the expression on the kid’s face 🙂

    Thanks a lot for sharing and have a beautiful day 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Sreejith. I was very proud of these photos until I saw Randall’s recent post (China Sojourns Photography). Now I want a second chance. Ha ha.
      Seriously, I had a wonderful time. It was my first Pow-wow and in the beginning, for a short time, I was overwhelmed with all colors and didn’t know who to shoot. 😉
      Have a wonderful day!

      Liked by 1 person

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