HOW NOT TO SCREW UP A GOOD THING

THE DOs AND DON’Ts OF INTRODUCING WOMEN TO SHOOTING

Originally published in Recoil Magazine, Issue 20

You know who you are. You’re the guy who shoots a lot, maybe competes a little. You sometimes browse the online profiles of female shooters, secretly wondering “Why can’t my woman be like that?” Well, guess what? She can. And she probably wants to. But, chances are, you’re approaching the matter the wrong way. Now, I’m not a firearms instructor, but I compete a lot and I often get asked by female (and male) friends to take them to the shooting range for the first time. And, like many people, I learn from my own experiences about what works and what doesn’t when introducing a woman to shooting. Here is my list of do’s and don’ts:

the dos and don'ts of introducing women to shooting1. DO teach her the four basics rules of firearm safety.

1. DON’T quiz her on it in the middle of dinner or while she’s getting her makeup done in the morning.

I shouldn’t have to list them. Honestly, if you don’t know these rules, you have no business teach-ing someone else how to shoot. Being safe is fundamental to any sport, but particularly when you’re dealing with objects that put holes in stuff. I’ve been repeating these four lines to my daughter since she was little and lately I’ve entered the practice of printing them on the back of my card and handing them out to new shooters. However you choose to approach it, just don’t skip this step even if — no, especially if — she claims she’s been around guns her whole life. And don’t ambush her to recite them at your will — she’ll memorize them by herself, I promise.

2. DO ask a friend to teach her, preferably another woman.

2. DON’T try to teach her yourself.

Introducing women to firearms

Unless you want a war at home. Women don’t like to be told what to do by their significant others (well, maybe some do, but I’m pretty sure those are called unicorns). My husband tried it a few times — I nearly scratched his eyes out. Your best course of action is to track down a reputable female instructor in your area. Failing that, enlist the help of any good shooter (male, female, hired gun, or family friend). They’ll probably do and say the same things you would, but they have a major advantage: they’re not you! Hubby does that sometimes — when I make mistakes, he asks a buddy to come and tell me to try this and that. Works fine, and preserves world peace.

3. DO give her firm verbal commands.

3. DON’T yell at her.

Don't yell at her

Giving clear, firm commands to someone handling a firearm is a good thing. For one, they are (or should be) wearing hearing protection and it will be a little hard to hear you. Second, you need to ensure they are safe and follow directions. But yelling at a woman and making her cry is a sure way to guarantee she won’t come back. Ever.

4. DO introduce her to firearm safety, shape, and functionality before shooting.

4. DON’T just hand her a large-caliber cannon and watch her fall on her butt.

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Ironically, what you say and do before you even hand her a firearm is even more important in making her comfortable than shooting itself. One of the most common mistakes men make is to give a high-recoil firearm to a female newbie the first time and watch as it violently kicks her back, or worse — jumps out of her hands and hits her in the 10.

Don’t laugh; not funny! She will work up to large calibers, just like I did, but shock therapy is not appropriate here. Ideally, show her various guns, explain how they function and begin with a training pistol such as the SIRT I like to use. Then proceed with something tame like a .22 or possibly 9mm. No, .40, .45, or .44 Magnum are not tame. If you start with any of those calibers, she will either give up or jerk the trigger for eternity.

5. DO teach her the basics.

5. DON’T try to teach her everything all at once.

Posture, grip, sight picture, and trigger control are the most important skills for every shooter, regardless of their level or gender. Sounds simple enough, but lecturing on it all at once won’t do you (or her) any good. Pace yourself and explain one thing at a time.

6. DO bring her along with your buddies to the range.

6. DON’T treat her like one of the dudes.

If she likes to (learn how to) shoot, she’s cool, all right. So bring her along! Contrary to popular belief, many women enjoy manly hobbies, myself included. Shooting, hunting, fishing, off-roading, poker, golf, strip clubs… OK, maybe not the latter, but you get the idea. However, just because she enjoys these things doesn’t mean she’s not a lady. So keep the burping, farting, and chest bumps for your bros and treat her with care and respect.

DO buy her a gun.

DON’T pick it out yourself.

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If you like her, you’ll buy her a gun. If you love her, you’ll let her pick it out herself. And don’t be stingy — some of us have really good (meaning expensive) tastes.

7. DO repeat instructions.

7. DON’T get agitated if she makes the same mistake more than once.

Despite our reputation, we women actually follow instructions very well. The problem is, we overthink and often have too many things on our mind, so we get distracted or forget. Expect to repeat yourself often. Don’t ever say, “She’s just not getting it” — unless you enjoy getting slapped up-side the head with a full magazine…

8. DO gently push her to lean forward.

8. DON’T shove her neck like an animal.

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One of the hardest things for women to learn is to be more aggressive with their stance and lean forward. It just feels weird and unnatural at first. Do explain to her the benefits (stability, recoil control, etc.) and do gently push or tap her back to remind her to lean forward. Squeezing or shoving her neck while she is shooting may result in unfavorable, potentially deadly consequences. Or at least couch condemnation for a week. Just don’t do it!

9. DO give her constructive criticism mixed with positive reinforcement.

9. DON’T constantly point out only what she’s doing wrong.

I pride myself with having a thick skin, taking criticism well, and generally being able to poke fun at my own downfalls. Yet, it really hurts my feelings when my own husband constantly tears my performance apart. In recent months, he’s gotten in this annoying habit of approaching me as soon as I finish a stage and volunteering the information of everything I did wrong. Way to kick me while I’m down, babe! Instead of sticking your foot in your mouth, try praising her for the things she did right. And, instead of pointing out her mistakes, try suggestions along the lines of “Why don’t you try this. It will help you accomplish that.” And just like that, instead of a jerk, you’re a hero!

10. DO introduce a timer. Eventually.

10. DON’T shove that thing in her face and remind her how slow she really is.

Diana-Hufstedler-Timer

Buzzers make us nervous. Period. I actually have a theory there is something in their sound frequency that scrambles brain waves — male and female. But, like any shooter, eventually we have to try doing things faster and the only way to measure progress is by timing it. You should, however, be tactful about it. Act like it’s no big deal, keep the timer behind her, but close enough to hear, and never say, “That was too slow.” Instead, make a game out of it and try, “That was awesome, but I know you can do it faster.” And remember, comparing her speed to yours is not a good idea — until she starts beating your time.

11. DO teach her double taps.

11. DON’T be a splits Nazi.

Double tapping is one of those weird skills you struggle with and one day you just miraculously get it. Teaching her how to double tap early on will save her a lot of frustration long term. I was not smart enough to do that and struggled for a long time with being unable to double tap. I had an irrational fear I’ll miss with my second shot and I genuinely thought I couldn’t move my trigger finger that fast! What finally did it for me? Hubby set up a steel popper about 10 yards away and told me to shoot it as many times as I can before it falls down. I can comfortably do about six now! But, he did not pressure me or time my splits like he would his own.

12. DO teach her different shooting positions.

12. DON’T do it on the first day.

Diana-Hufstedler-shooting-positions

It would be lovely if we all got into ideal shooting position every time we shot. However, the reality is that in both defensive and competition shooting we are going to be subjected to the most bizarre acrobatic tricks sometimes. While you can’t plan for everything, you’ll do her a favor if you show her some of the more common alternate shooting positions — prone, on one knee, one-handed, laying on your back, etc. Just don’t do that on day one.

13. DO encourage her to try competition.

13. DON’T force her or call her a sissy if she is not ready just yet.

The best approach, in my experience, is to bring her to competitions to watch. If there are female competitors there — encourage her to watch them, talk to them and ask questions. It took seeing other women do it to convince me that I can too, and now I hope I can pay it forward. We are a very supportive community that welcomes and encourages new shooters and you should take advantage of that. Whatever you do, just don’t tease her or you’ll be stuck with the ever-popular “It’s just not my thing” excuse for eternity.

14. DO make it fun.

15. DON’T poke fun at her or call her cute.

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The most important advice, and the one I want to leave you with, is to always make it fun. Laugh, joke around, and don’t be too serious or it will go from recreation to work in no time. And save the poking fun for later, when she’s more confident. Also, don’t call her cute, try badass — she is holding a gun, after all.

15. DO remember we are different.

15. DON’T ignore this advise.

Now, I don’t know if men are from Mars and women are from Venus, but we do learn to shoot differently. Follow this advice and I promise you — even if you don’t train the next Annie Oakley, you’re bound to score some brownie points. If nothing else, they’ll come in handy next time you come home and say, “Honey, look what I got from the gun shop”….

XOXO

Your friendly neighborhood gun lady,

Diana

Photos Credit: 5.11 Media & Ralph Horne, Copyright 2015

Special thanks to my friend Wendy Dickey for being my “model”.

Sponsors:

Taran Tactical Innovations

Safariland

5.11 Tactical

Zero Bullets

Patriot Cases

Weapon Shield

What-ya-say Hearing Protection

Posted in 3-Gun Fun, Day One, Fabulous Females, Firepower, My Life, Tips for Success | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments

Drake Gets Ready for Bow Season

Missouri bow season starts Sept. 15.

By now, you’ve probably fletched some arrows, practiced rattling the horns and picked out your monster buck in trail cam pics.

How many of you take your kids hunting with you?

My dad took me hunting with him a few times as a kid. I remember getting so excited heading out to the woods with him and helping him harvest his trophy each year.

In Trick or Treatthe latest tale from Drake’s Adventures, Drake and his dad get ready for their own hunt on Halloween.

Mwah, ha, haaaa! Just kidding! It’s not scary!

deer

In the book, as Drake and his dad get their gear together, they look over trail cam pics one last time.

That’s when they see him—SPIDER!

Spider is the monster buck they’ve been tracking for a while, and knowing he might be where they guys are hunting the next day gets them really pumped up!

The next morning, Drake and his dad get everything set up for the hunt. What probably felt like hours into the morning, Spider eventually shows his face.

“And he looked mad!”

I won’t tell you how the rest of the story goes, so you’ll have to read it for yourself.

There are a couple of things I like most about this book:

  • Keith Beam goes into a lot of detail when discussing the importance of being scent free, something VERY important to deer hunting.
  • Like Spring Thunder, Trick or Treat uses detailed sounds to engage young readers, but it also had a button that will read the entire book to them.

But wait, there’s more!

There’s a spot on the side of the book for headphones, and all the parents said, “YESSSSS!!!”

One question I have for Keith—when does Drake actually get to pull the trigger/release the arrow for himself? The first two books, the dad gets to take the animal down. When does Drake get to take one down? :)

Maybe Drake and his sister, Cricket, will get the chance to pull the trigger in Drake’s next adventure, Cattail Point. Dad takes son and daughter mallard hunting. Let’s hope their crew has more luck with duck hunting than I do!

If you’re a bow hunter interested in teaching your kids more about bow hunting, pick up a copy of Trick or Treat today!

Beth

Posted in Books, Bowhunting, Fun with Kids, Hunting, Tips for Success | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Continuing a Legacy, One Page at a Time

Hunting
Spring turkey hunting is one of my favorite things to do. There’s something about walking through the woods in the dark around 4 a.m. and listening to the spring peepers that makes my soul sing.

Passion
There’s a certain level of passion you must have to get up at the break of dawn to hunt, but the result is often rewarding.

Children
Most kids simply want to make their parents happy, and that usually involves doing whatever their parents do. “I’ve Been Watching You” by Rodney Atkins comes to mind here, when the little boy mimics his days behavior from letting a cuss word slip to praying before bed.

Books
I love books! I have a small library in my home. Eventually, I will get around to reading them all. When my daughter was younger, we read a book every night before she went to bed. I buy real books, not the electronic version. To me, there’s something about curling up with a good book.

What happens when you combine hunting, passion, children and book? A children’s book about one father’s passion for hunting and conservation and passing traditions down to his son.

Enter Drake’s Adventures.

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Keith Beam quit the corporate world to pursue his dreams of writing and publishing books about hunting and conservation. His first book, Spring Thunder, takes us on a father and son’s first hunting adventure together. The main character, Drake, is so excited to help his dad get ready for tomorrow’s turkey hunt.

The night before the big hunt, Drake and his dad head out into the woods to roost some gobblers. One of my favorite things in the book is Keith’s reference to the owl call – “Who cooks for you, who cooks for all…” This took me straight into the woods where I could almost hear the owls hoot back, which in return makes the gobblers gobble!

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The next morning, the hunt is on, and Drake waits patiently for his father’s wink before he sounds the first call.

This colorful and interactive sound book is a great way to get your kiddos excited about hunting. Keith does a great job of covering the basics of ethical hunting, including how to notch your tag once the bird is taken. Watching father and son walk out of the woods with a bagged bird is the ultimate reward, but Keith’s goal in writing this book wasn’t just to teach kids about hunting.

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“Over the years, membership numbers of organizations such as the National Wild Turkey Federation have started to slide,” Keith said. “One of my goals with the Drake’s Adventures books is to help parents keep the younger kids interested.”

The NWTF does a great job promoting hunting and conservation through their JAKES program, but the program is designed for kids 10 and up. Drake’s Adventures are catered towards the younger kids who aren’t quite old enough to participate in organized youth hunting and conservation programs.

If you’re a hunter interested in teaching your kids about hunting and conservation, pick up a copy of Spring Thunder today!

If turkey hunting isn’t your thing, Drake’s next adventure is about a little boy’s first deer hunt with dad.  Trick-or-Treat comes outJuly 23. If waterfowl hunting is your thing, Drake and his sister Cricket head out on a hunt with Dad in Cattail Point, available for sale in October.

Beth

Posted in Bowhunting, Conservation, Fun with Kids, Hunting | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Feels Like Home

I cannot believe how long it’s been since I’ve been on this blog!  Let me just say….I missed you guys so much! 

Some of you have no idea who I am, and some of you have been patiently waiting for my return. Well friends, it’s good to be home!

Two years ago, I left the shooting sports industry for a Marketing Communications job for a workers compensation company. I’m still there, and I love it, but leaving MidwayUSA was a tough decision, especially after being there for 11-1/2 years. On top of switching industries, my daughter became very active in softball, and time on the range was replaced with time on the ball fields. I love being able to support my kiddo doing what she loved, but this year she decided softball wasn’t in her heart anymore and decided stop playing. This got me thinking about what was in my heart — SHOOTING! I’ve missed it so!

This past week was the NRA Bianchi Cup. If you’ve been around the Cup, you can relate when I say the shooters who come to Columbia, MO each year are like members of your extended family. Last week, I got to spend time with certain members of that family, including Miss Diana, and even though I only get to see these family members once a year, I felt right at home.

Photo by Diana Hufstedler

Reunited! Just missing Kelli Sampsel! Photo by Diana Hufstedler

One lucky man! Diana, Jill Baucom, Trevor Baucom, April Crane and Me

One lucky man -Trevor Baucom with Diana, his bride Jilly Bean, April Crane and Me

One of my favorite Aussie's, Craig Ginger

One of my favorite Aussie’s, Craig Ginger

My BBQ date, Kim Beckwith -- thanks for letting him take me, Cheryl!

My BBQ date, Kim Beckwith — thanks for letting him take me, Cheryl!

One of the coolest cats from Louisiana, Mr. George Mowbray

One of the coolest cats from Louisiana, Mr. George Mowbray

I didn’t shoot the Cup this year, but it looks like next year might be my year. Now that I’ve got some ammo, it’s time to start getting my feet wet again. I’m shooting my first match in more than two years on June 2. I’m a little nervous, because shooting a match isn’t like riding a bike. Regardless, it will be great to get back out there. Let’s hope my gun belt still fits!

See you guys and gals on the range soon!

Beth

Posted in Bianchi Cup, Fabulous Females, NRA, Range Day, Top Shooters | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

How it’s made – Safariland Group

I will admit – I’m curious. I just can’t help it! I’ve always wanted to peek behind the scenes, learn how things are made, dissect a business model or look under the hood. Curiosity is natural, but we don’t always get to feed it. Sad, I know. So what I’ve been doing here with this blog (aside from poking fun at myself) is sharing fun experiences for everyone to enjoy with me. And, boy, did I get a treat this time!

Last December while I was in L.A. doing this, I managed to sneak in a visit to the Safariland Headquarters in Ontario, CA. Yes, people, that’s in California, not Canada – they are funny about guns there…. First of all, I was psyched to receive a personal invitation from the founder himself – Mr. Neale Perkins – the man, who along with John Bianchi, started an empire by making leather holsters in his garage. A true Bill Gates story – the man’s a legend! To top it all off, it was my birthday too and, as a treat, the Safariland folks showed me some awesome hospitality. I learned a lot and here’s an insider look behind this now multi-million dollar operation:

Safariland-Saving-lives

How many lives has your brand saved? I think they are up to 1911 by now – yes, I said 1911! :)

When I stole (yes, stole) my first Safariland holster from hubby I didn’t know much about the brand. I thought they only make competition gear – after all, that’s all I’d ever seen. Turns out more than 90% of their business is from law enforcement & riot gear. Their tagline is “Together, we save lives” and let me tell ya – these people take this stuff seriously! Don’t believe me? Check out this pic of their counter of people added to their “Saves Club.” Yes, just like you guessed – this is number of LEO lives saved by their gear! It hangs in the front lobby of the HQ building and is such a huge part of their culture – talk about having a meaningful job!

And when I say they take it seriously – they do:

riot-armor

You know those brave men & women that jump in the front lines of whatever crazy riot is happening? This armor saves their lives!

How do they know it will stop a bullet? Because they test it – duh! They have 2 ballistic labs on the premises (soundproof, at that) where lucky technicians like the one pictured below get to blow stuff up for a living. He gave me a tour and explained the elaborate quality control process but lost me after “ballistic coefficient” and “sectional density”…. :)

Safariland-ballistic-engineer

I’ll call this tech a “ballistic engineer” because, frankly, I don’t know his title but it surely must be complicated. ;) It was explained to me this clay here is the same density as a human body!

Then I got to play with the water jet machine. No, not really, but pretend was fun too.

water-jet-machine

Water jet machine! I wish… But I do look like horns belong on my head here. :)

And the best part about making holsters – well, they have to fit real guns! I took a detour to one of the (many) gun safes but totally got busted stuffing my purse. Dang! Next time…

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Busted!

And while we are on the subject of how holsters are made – it all starts in the R&D lab with prototypes and input from heavy users like myself:

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Scott Carnahan, VP of Sales and a 36-year employee of the company, demonstrates how concepts become a reality at R&D.

Then craftsmen like the man below, a 37-year veteran with the company, make the magic happen with their bare hands. Ok, maybe some proprietary machinery might be involved too – but that’s top secret and you didn’t hear it from me! ;)

Safariland-craftman

The molding a leather holster. Each one goes though several cycles of quality control & inspections too!

Last but not least, I discovered that Safariland’s main facility is also the place where a ton of major car maker’s tire covers and floor mats are manufactured, including such for giants like Toyota, Chevrolet and my personal favorite – Jeep!

jeep-tire-cover

I’ll take the Jeep to go with this accessory, if you don’t mind.

All in all, it was a great trip and I will always be grateful to the man who “discovered” me and always showed me kindness and hospitality – the one & only Scott Carnahan (yes, he is a shooter too and a motorcycle daredevil)! Thanks for everything and see you next time.

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Me & Scott in front of the main HQ Safariland building in Ontario. CA

And this, folks, is how my favorite shooting accessories (and a bunch of other stuff) is made. Where should I sneak in next?

XOXO

Your friendly neighborhood gun lady,

Diana

If curious about what other products they offer, or just want to learn about their initiatives, visit: www.safariland.com

Posted in Everything Else, Fabulous Females, Fun & Games, Gear, My Life, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Behind the Scenes of the Femme Fatale Photoshoot of the Century

Hi, my name is Diana Hufstedler. You may know me as the team TTI 3-Gunner who likes fashion or the potty-mouth blogger who tells it as it is. But in my 8 to 5 job I’m a marketer, and a good one (tell my boss).  Today I will reveal to you the secret recipe to a killer marketing campaign & will bring you behind the scenes of the 5.11 Media production that can easily be described as the photoshoot of the century!

team-TTI-team-Taran-Tactical-Innovations

Team TTI (sometimes affectionately referred to as “Ballistic Angels” or simply “Taran’s Angels”). Members featured: Michelle Jean, Corinne Mosher, Allie Barrett, Diana Hufstedler (yeah, I’m always in black), Sammi King, Jessica Hook, Janna Reeves & our fierce leader Taran Butler. All images: courtesy of 5.11 Media

 1. Start with 7 Kick-ass Female 3-Gun Competitors

Sure, you can hire models. But where is the fun in that? First of all, viewers are not stupid – they can spot a phony from a mile away. Second, it will build your credibility & prove your products really are designed for running & gunning, because that’s what we really do. Last, but not least, your pretty pictures will actually say something. Female shooters have long battled stereotypes: either we were perceived as manly tomboys or gun bunnies posing with firearms in their bikini (nothing against that, I love a hot gal with a smoking gun as much as the next guy). However, the fact is, many of us are serious shooters & competitors who leave most men in the dust. Funny thing is, until recently, the firearms industry not only fueled the misunderstandings, they ignored one of the fastest growing segments – women! Not anymore.

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The girls & I sharing an umbrella right before it was my turn with the cameraman…
Janna Reeves, Jessica Hook, Michelle Jean, Diana Hufstedler

 2. Hire a Killer Production Crew

Enter 5.11 Tactical & the 5.11 Media crew (with team members who produced some of the best gun shows on the Discovery Channel) for a production that will blow your mind! There is a reason the photos you took with your cell in the garage, *cough* office, looked like crap. Simple, really, if you want high quality anything – hire professionals! So, to the point: a couple of weeks ago Taran Butler, a multiple world champion & TV personality, who also owns Taran Tactical Innovations (a top-notch provider of gunsmithing services & shooting accessories and the first & ONLY company with a largely female-dominated shooting team, myself included) teamed up with the leader in tactical apparel & gear – 5.11 Tactical, for a photo/video shoot in the Hollywood Hills just outside LA that can make even the most battle-hardened dude blush & sweat with excitement. And (still pinching myself), I got to be a part of it!

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The dream team! Top row: Michelle , Corinne, Allie, Diana, Sammi, Jessica & Janna.
Bottom row: Videographer (so sorry, I forgot your name), Kevin, Hawk Vacarro, Jesse Clements, Taran Butler (TTI owner), Eric Katzenberg, Kenji Sweeney, Mariva England, Matt Frederick, Lyndsey Grove, Nabil Khattar

3. Add Drama

No, not THAT kind of drama (if you want that – go back to the models). Striking sunsets, high contrast, rumbling skies, extreme angles, hero shots, badass guns, a shootout (or shot-out) car, the rugged desert & the juxtaposition of a traditionally very manly sport and the ultra-femininity of the women 3-Gunners. If you are not familiar with the athletic discipline of 3 Gun – let me enlighten you: it is a grueling, adrenaline-filled sport, which requires skill, speed, power & accuracy with all 3 firearms – pistol, rifle & shotgun. It takes the concept of “run & gun” to a whole new level and females have been fighting with blood, sweat & tears for their place. “Femme Fatale”, indeed (yep, that really is the working title of the campaign for 5.11’s new women’s line)!

ladies-of-team-TTI-sunset

The ladies of team TTI. Sunset, end of day one. Can you guess who is who?

4. Slow Motion For Me

No self-respecting promo video is complete without slow motion. You wanna make even the most trivial of things (like arriving at the range or double-tapping 3 targets in a row) look super cool – slow-motion it. Bam, you just went from “I blinked & missed it” to “Reservoir Dogs & “The Matrix”! Plus, brass flying at the camera just brings the viewer in on the action like nothing else. Want to kick it up a notch? Add a smoke machine and you’ve officially entered into super badassery (admit you like my made-up-words).

girls-arriving-at-the-range

I cannot even begin to explain how cool this slow-motion video of us arriving at the range at sunrise is! (our awesome cameraman Hawk let us preview footage briefly)

5. Make It Rain Brass

Duh, I should have started with this one! And rain brass it did; as a matter of fact I feel sorry for whoever had to pick it up after we were done. Let me tell ya, none of us had a clue we were about to change history for women shooters. We were just a bunch of friends who got together to do what we do best – shoot a lot & do it really, really fast! Photographers, cameramen, art directors & stylists followed. There was laughter, jokes, goofing off & even some friendly competition. Next thing you know – magic happened! There were hero shots, product close-ups (of course), real action video, a shoot-house with multiple high-tech cameras at weird angles and even a gag reel. The truth is, it was good because it was genuine, because we all love the smell of gun powder more than that of our morning coffee… The final result – dunno, what I’m sharing is all I’ve got but it MUST BE EPIC because 5.11 is keeping the final promo top-secret until spring! Ah, the anticipation…

Diana-Hufstedler-cameraman-Hawk-Vacarro

On the last day of our photo shoot we got to play around & do what we usually do: SHOOT FAST. I was pretty stoked with my 3.12 sec run on the plates (pictured here) until my teammate Allie smoked us all with under 3 sec. Fun times!

All in all, we worked hard ( I know, somebody had to do it, lol) – shot from sunrise to sunset for 3 days straight. We were cold, we were hot, we were tired & hyperactive all at once. We laughed, drank coffee, ate & even celebrated my birthday together! The experience changed my perception of the industry. They DO care about females; they are starting to make products that actually fit our bodies & lifestyles and they are noticing our presence on the competition circuit. It was refreshing to work with a company that wanted to feature real female shooters, not just models. And it was refreshing to get our voice heard. As far as the photo-shoot itself; it was a blast! Most of us don’t do this on a regular basis. We have jobs like everyone else, we take our kids to Girl & Boy Scouts, we do laundry & then we put on our competition rigs to lock & load with the guys. So being a part of such a monumental project that will assert women shooters’ badassery (there’s that word again) worldwide was a major treat. It was a memorable experience for all of us & we hope our message comes through in the campaign this Spring.

So when it comes out – like it, share it, show it to your friends & the women in your life & tell everyone I said: “Watch out boys, female shooters aren’t just a bunch of pretty faces. We are here to stay and the industry is taking notice!”

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It’s a wrap!

XOXO

Your friendly neighborhood gun lady,

Diana

Facebook-Diana-HufstedlerFor more shooting adventures, join me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/diana.hufstedler

 

 

And since I’m a major believer in giving credit where credit is due, here are my acknowledgements. Major thanks to the following people/entities:

Taran Butler & the entire staff of TTI for hosting the event at their range & providing our team with top-notch guns & gear. Also, for being genuinely awesome all around!

Federal Premium for the piles of ammo we burned through ;)

5.11 Tactical’s leadership team not only for featuring real female shooters, but also for making clothing that is actually designed for women. Stuff actually fits AND looks good: mind blown!

The 5.11 Media crew, who were a hoot to work with:

Eric Katzenberg, the ultra-fun, uber-talented, multitasking “Boss-man”, aka Director of Media Content. Thanks for doing it all & having a great sense of humor.

Matt Frederick, the quiet but amazingly insightful Art Director. Thanks for ensuring we all look good and our genuine badassery (I can’t stop saying that, I think I stole it from Eric actually…) comes through.

Jesse Clements, the photographer that will roll around, lay on the ground, stand in front of our (EMPTY) guns and just altogether do anything to get the shot. Thanks for being patient with us, non-model models. :)

Hawk Vacarro, our favorite cameraman who, aside from having the ability to somehow loop around you no matter what you’re doing, is also one of the most genuinely nice guys I’ve ever met. Thank you for being so good to us & making us feel very relaxed. We owe you a birthday celebration! ;)

Mariva England, the sweetest, coolest, most adorable makeup & wardrobe lady. Thank you for ensuring we always looked good and bringing light into this world with your beautiful smile!

Lyndsey Grove, the Marketing Manager who did not hesitate to drive to the location and bring more needed clothes & supplies. Thank you for taking the time to talk to us about what really matters to female shooters!

Nabil Khattar, I’m not sure what your title is but all I know is that when something was needed – you were always there. Thank you for not gassing us to death with that smoke machine! :D

Kenji & Kevin, I did not get to talk to you as much and that was because you were so busy capturing the magic. Thank you!

And now, a little bonus because you scrolled all the way down: a teaser behind the scenes clip of Jessica Hook & I shreadding with our AR-15’s. We were having so much fun that it was sad every time the director yelled “Cut”. It was cool, though, cause it made us feel like movie stars or something. ;)

Posted in 3-Gun Fun, Fabulous Females, Firepower, My Life, Range Day, Tips for Success, Top Shooters | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments