Tuesday, July 31, 2018


Ever since we arrived here in Idaho—some nine years ago—I’ve been photographing all aspects of the old farmsteads that are quickly vanishing in the cities (Boise, Meridian, Nampa, Eagle, etc.) around us with an emphasis on old farm machinery, like tractors and harvesting equipment, barns and out buildings. We have some tractor salvage yards where the concentration of old farm machinery to photograph was excellent as well.  But, my favorite setting is to photograph these subjects actually at the old farms. I prefer to have them in their natural environment to give them context. Sometimes I’m lucky enough to find some farm equipment in the last stages of decay so symbolic of the vanishing family farm…
f8.0 @ 1/200 sec., ISO 800; Lens @ 70mm
I love the rusty wheel, but the lichen on those wooden rollers was marvelous. Those wood components are actually disintegrating into the soil. What’s great about Idaho is that even though these farms are disappearing in the cities you only have to drive 15 or 20 minutes from any of the cities in Ada County to find lots of farm land with great subjects like this…

f13.0 @ 1/80 sec., ISO 400; Lens @ 32mm
Typically I go out about an hour and a half before sunset and then stay on site until the sun actually sets.  (The “Magic Hour”!) The setting sun is truly magic when it plays across rusting metal.

As a special reminder to my fellow outdoor photogs doing this kind of photography—always watch your back when on location towards sunset!  I was so engrossed with these great pieces of farm machinery that I almost missed this scene behind me!

f20.0 @ 1/100 sec., ISO 400; Lens @ 90mm
Classic Idaho farm country, a terrific cloudscape, and rain as well!  This spot is only 15 minutes from my home in the suburbs of Meridian.

Anyway, back to the farm equipment basking in that setting sun….

 f13.0 @ 1/50, ISO 400; Lens @ 55mm
An old John Deere, off its wheels, rusting into the ground. Love that peeling paint! I really love going in close to show the details…

 f6.3 @ 1/160 sec., ISO 800: Lens @ 120mm
These were the controls on some kind of harvesting equipment. Again, lots of rust and that colorful lichen; didn’t know lichen could live on metal or rust?  Anyway, still having fun in Idaho…can’t wait until fall and then Winter!

Let me know if you have any comments or questions…’Til next week…

Author:  Jerry W. Venz, PPA Master Photographer, Craftsman
Training site: http://www.LightAtTheEdge.com
Client site: http://www.TheStorytellersUsa.com

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