Monday, August 6, 2012

Barn Raising

Old barns are fading from our landscape. Since the advent of rolled hay, their design has become less useful. The effect of the economy on our hard-working farmers has hindered their ability to keep them in good repair. Some are finding new purpose, being dismantled for use in flooring and siding. Others are rotting where they stand.

On my way up to Canada last weekend I had hoped to photograph the many barns I usually pass in New York state and Ontario, but I found they had mostly been replaced with rectangular aluminum structures that don't need paint. That should have made me happy because it's a sign of prosperity for the farmers - but it didn't. I will miss the picturesque shapes of the old wood barns on the horizon. To me, they speak of a simpler time when rugged individualists provided for their families and communities, when barn raisings meant neighbors helping neighbors; when a good day's work was instantly rewarded at your dinner table.

                For sixty years the pine lumber barn
                had held cows, horses, hay, harness, tools, junk
                amid the prairie winds...
                and the corn crops came and went, plows and wagon
                and hands milked, hands husked and harnessed
                and held the leather reins of horse teams
                in dust and dog days, in late fall sleet 'til the work
                 was done that fall
                And the barn was a witness, stood and saw it all

                                             from "The People, Yes,"
                                                by Carl Sandburg

Our theme for the month of August is BARNS.  Preserve them for the future by honoring them with your beautiful photographs. Don't forget to label them "In Focus Theme -Barns." Your shot may be a featured photo in our weekly selection.


Anonymous said...

Wonderful photographs, Carol! There are still a lot of old barns in my part of the world, in all states of repair!

Carol said...

Well, run right out there and get your shots so I can see them! Have fun!~

heyjudephotography said...

They are very few barns near where I live, but after reading your post I realize that when I'm traveling I do see far fewer barns than before. I am on the hunt for them now!

Deanna said...

One of my favorite in the midwest, in the heart of corn country we still have a good amount of barns, both in good shape and in need of run-down repair. Great theme for the month of August!!

Claudia@DipityRoad said...

I love barns and have not taken as many photos as I wished I had.

I will change that and get my hinnie out there. Great inspiration and good theme!


terriporter said...

Love your barn shots, Carol! Being in the "big city", we don't have many barns around, but I'll bet if I go on a hunt in the outskirts, I will be able to find some. Thanks for the inspiration to find something new to shoot.

Kim Stevens said...

One of the things I loved about traveling to Chicago last summer was taking the very long way there by car and I missed seeing, like Deanna said, all the lovely barns of the Midwest. Being coastal now, I don't see many at all, just plenty of cattle. But, I'm gonna see what I can do . . . great post, love your barn captures!

Carol said...

Thanks all,
As I said, they are one of my favorite subjects - especially great with textures too. I hope we all can have some fun with them.

Leigh said...

Such great barn shots Carol! I'm definitely going to try and get some Oklahoma barn shots for you this week!

radish38 said...

I am right there with you taking barns. Starting in September I am going back to barns again. I have taken photos of them for at least six years.

Dotti said...

Beautiful barns, Carol and this should be fun!! Barns are plentiful in our area because tobacco is still a big crop. The challenge is accessibility - they're often not close to the road. But I'll persevere.



Carol said...

I really would love to see them. I just enjoy the whole idea. Thanks for responding

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