Abandoned: Week 8’s challenge was to photograph something that was “abandoned.” Ricky’s example was an aging, rusting truck that is in his neighborhood in La Veta, CO. There are lots of possibilities for abandoned things in my area of north Texas – farm equipment, vehicles, buildings, industrial structures. I decided on a small dairy barn at what is now the Austin College Sneed Environmental Research Area, but which had formerly been the Sneed farm, owned by Clinton and Edith Sneed, who donated it to the college in 1984. Several of the structures that were on the farm when it was donated are gone now, including a couple of sheds and the house (we burned the house as part of a training exercise for local firefighters, and to get rid of all of the rodent inhabitants that probably carried hantavirus). The dairy barn is still there, and we are leaving it alone because black vultures nest inside it.
There are a variety of angles and lines of view to capture an image like this, and a variety of ways to frame the structure. This is the one I ended up submitting for the photo challenge.
This one was selected for critique, which was a first for me. The critique was mostly stick and essentially no carrot. One criticism was that there should have been more open space to the right of the building; I didn’t do that because it would have shown the modern structure that is the McCarley Pavilion, which we use in teaching field biology. Another was that there could have either been more foreground and less sky, or the other way around. I guess the scientist in me wants things to be centered. Another was that it is not necessary to show the entire subject for an “artistic” image depicting “abandoned,” which is true – my image is more “documentary” than artistic. My response to that, because of what I use photographs for (to document things in biology), is that I have been training myself as a documentary photographer for decades.
Week 12 was “do-over,” so I thought, maybe I will try something different with the Sneed dairy barn. I was pressed for time (I always seem to be pressed for time these days), so I only took a dozen or so photos, but I came out with one I liked well enough to post for week 12:
We will see what Ricky thinks of this one.