Friday, August 29, 2014

Bringing in the Wheat Harvest

Today was a real treat.  We visited a wonderful farm in the middle of the harvest activities, and were given first hand insights to the working of a modern agricultural enterprise.  The machinery is HUGE and powerful and the days are long for the workers.  Rod is a third generation family farmer, and his barns and equipment are meticulous.  Needless to say there was a lot to photograph.  Here is a sampling of our time there.

Riding shotgun in the combine harvester!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Driving the back roads through The Palouse

There's something about roads less traveled, although I know the farmers and photographers travel these quite a bit.  Anyway, this south east area of Washington state is quite beautiful.  Today I got an early start and emptied pretty much an entire tank of gas re-aquainting myself with these rolling hills. I'll be doing more of this over the next few days so expect to see many similar scenes :)  I have joined a group of photographers here in Colfax, and from the initial briefing, it seems we will be moving out every morning at 5am and shooting until after dark, so maybe you won't see many images because I will be falling into my bed exhausted every evening.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The Gates of St. Michaels

I was on a mission yesterday evening to capture a couple of shots of the magnificent wrought iron gates at St. Michaels Episcopal church.  I wanted to produce a set of matching prints for an upcoming silent auction that I've been asked to donate to. I like these, but I'm  not sure yet whether they will be the final choices. I do love the subject matter though; there is no shortage of great photographic material in Charleston, South Carolina.

Look for some images from the Palouse area of Washington over the next couple of days.  I am heading West today to photograph the wheat harvest in the rural southeastern part of the state.

Friday, August 22, 2014

And Even More Lowcountry Life

What can I say, I live in the Lowcountry, so that's most of what ends up on this blog.  This is pretty cool however.  Earlier this year, a neighbor and I were very involved in the survival of owlets that had been born to parents who had built a very inadequate nest in their yard.  Actually my neighbors did all of the work and I mostly photographed them :) We think one owlet probably didn't make it, but one certainly did and he now has his big boy feathers and is hunting along with his parents in the marsh and island forest that adjoins our neighborhood.  Yesterday evening we took a paddle down the creek at high tide to see how the family was doing.  We spotted the juvenile (see below) and he seems to be doing great, but the others were not to be seen, at least not last evening.  It was hot, and we were more than ready for a shower when we were done, but it was a lot of fun.  Here are some of the images I took.
Great Horned Owl - all grown up

Banana Spider - forest inhabitant

Kayak beached on the little island

Creek at high tide

Dale photographing something

Almost home!

Saturday, August 16, 2014

More Lowcountry Life

What an idyllic life for a little boy, growing up in these parts.  Today it's a sunset paddle in a kayak with Dad on the beautiful Stono River.


Thursday, August 7, 2014

The Lowcountry Life

In my mind, nothing represents the lowcountry way of life more than seeing a cast net fly over a creek.  I had been wanting to capture this on camera for awhile and yesterday evening everything came together; the tide, the weather, and my always obliging friend James.  Here are a few of the images.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

The beautiful towns and fields of South Carolina

There was nowhere I had to be today so I decided to take a mini road trip through the farms and small towns in our beautiful state.  I also took the opportunity to spend some time with friends in Ridge Spring, a hub of peach farming activity.  Being farmers themselves, and having lived in the area for many generations, they were happy to be my guides and show me all kinds of really neat things that I would completely have missed if I hadn't known about the gravel roads that crisscross fields and link farms with neighboring farmsteads in the region.

The really sad thing is that these small towns are slowly dying because the young people have all left to pursue lives in the bigger cities.  Houses have been left to decay with no buyers available to take them at any price.  Churches are closing their doors because they are losing too many parishioners to their adjacent cemeteries, and there is no new generation rising up to replace them.  Stores are boarded up, and there is no longer any demand for accommodation in the local hotels.  The independent farmers can no longer compete with the Corporate farmers, and so they sell their land and move away.  The price of progress.

I didn't take many photos, mainly because it was pouring with rain most of the time.  I will go back as soon as I can because I have much unfinished business, but here are a few that I managed to take of peaches ready for picking (courtesy of Titan Farms) and some cotton plants flowering in fields along the road as I traveled home.