A funny thing about publishing a magazine is that most of the time you’re working a year in advance. That means for the Thanksgiving 2020 issue of Eating Well magazine, I took photos on Thanksgiving 2019.
Eating Well planned a spread of photos from across the United States to show different ways we celebrate Thanksgiving. My assignment was to document the role small farms play in the process while covering the Midwest section of the story.
Liz and Nate Brownlee own and operate Nightfall Farm in Crothersville, Indiana. Here are some images as I follow them around southern Indiana on their distribution day.
Fun Fact: I took the image they published in the first 30 minutes of a 5 hour shoot. You never know which photos are going to be your best until you go through the entire process.
Eating Well Thanksgiving Issue
Click on the image below to head to the Eating Well website and see the full story celebrating the diversity of our country on one of our favorite holidays.
Today I took a walk through the woods at Ritchey Woods Nature Preserve in Fishers, IN. It’s basically a suburban oasis of forest and natural grassland.
I had five kids with me, but for this post, you can just go alone.
Bringing the Nature to you
Spending so much time at home these days, it can be a bit of an adjustment heading into public, even if it’s a natural and somewhat remote setting. Each time we spend some time in nature, I’m always glad we do!
I hope this brings some peace to anyone who is quarantining or currently without large swaths of nature in which to roam.
Depth vs Expression
For the next two images, I noticed this woman as I walked along a trail and couldn’t resist taking her photo. It was a nice moment. Which of the two images do you like best? They’re very similar but have two subtle differences. Leave a comment and let me know!
The most obvious difference is her facial expression. The top photo is more serene and the second is almost funny. I think she was having her photo taken by her husband off to the side.
The second, more subtle difference is the depth of field. The top photo was taken at f/11 so it has more depth than the second photo, which is f/2.8. Although, at this distance from the subject, it’s not as pronounced.
I prefer the depth of the second photo with the expression in the first. But since I don’t make fake photos by combining images, I’ll choose the first photo as my favorite because of the expression.
For the next two images, I played with depth again to bring out some different abstract qualities in the scenes.
For the image above, I liked how the shape of the leaves and the sunlight combine for some interesting abstract patterns. I used more depth (f/11) to get more of the shapes into focus. Also, in this case I thought the black & white edit better highlighted what I liked about the scene.
The image below is from the same area, but with the shallow depth and focus in the foreground, I ended up liking the color version better.
This next image below had some impressionistic qualities that caught my eye. By using a shallow depth of field, the foreground and background fall quickly out of focus to add to the painterly quality of the photo.
Visitors and Residents
The trails at Ritchey Woods Nature Preserve were busy with dog walkers and families having their portraits taken. We also passed some permanent residents who had not-so-recently had some flowers placed at their resting place.
This next section features some images that highlight basic concepts of photography and composition: color, line, texture, shape, pattern and more.
When I saw the bent and gnarled vines below, I thought it looked cool in real life, but I wasn’t confident it would translate well into a photo. I decided to take a shot anyways and it turns out I was wrong!
The black & white edit really highlights the shapes as does the high contrast.
We love to celebrate art and artists, so I was excited to photograph a new event in Indianapolis: Indy Mural Fest. I appreciate their mission to have a festival full of LOCAL artists, so the full talent of our city is on public display.
Another important factor is that all artists are paid for their work. As a working artist myself, I know how much of a reward it is to be hired for your own vision, so it’s great to see others provided that same opportunity.
See it Yourself
A great thing about this mural art is that it’s on display around the clock in public places. Take a look at this map and go see the art for yourself!
If you’re interested in seeing even more images from this event, subscribe to our newsletter for a full gallery. Click here to sign up. After entering your email, you’ll see this past week’s newsletter containing a link to a password-protected gallery.
Our newsletter is the place we give a first-looks and extended galleries of my weekly stories. It also includes extras like free downloads, tips, discounts on prints and more.
Into art, artists and just general creativity? Check out these other posts.
Our story this week features Turkey Run State Park in western Indiana.
Carved by glaciers millions of years ago, this park features some of the most unique topography in Indiana. Walk with us through the ravines and sandstone gorges to see what this park has to offer.
Please share this post with a friend who appreciates things like photography, nature and art. When more people see and share our stories, we’re able to produce more stories for you to see and share. Funny how that works!
Have you been to Turkey Run State Park? Leave a comment👇🏼! What’s your favorite trail? Do you like the ladders or do you prefer to steer clear?
If you’re into the great outdoors, be sure to check out these other posts.