Creating visual permanence in a world of relentless motion.

Posts tagged “agricultural

Urban Gardening photo project

I’m eager to begin sharing my Urban Garden project with the world. I’m posting selected photographs to a new, dedicated Instagram account @matthewstaver in banner format. Here is the first photo posted, others will appear as I can post them.  For more information, or if you have a unique urban vegetable garden in the Denver area that might make a good fit for the project send me an email!  –   mattstaver(at)hotmail.com

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In The Yards (a new documentary photograph)

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To see more from this project, a more comprehensive gallery is on my website: http://www.matthewstaver.com/in-the-yards/


In The Yards

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To see more from this project, a more comprehensive gallery is on my website: http://www.matthewstaver.com/in-the-yards/


In The Yards (new) photograph #6

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To see more from this project, a more comprehensive gallery is on my website: http://www.matthewstaver.com/in-the-yards/


In The Yards #2

Below is the second new photograph this year from my documentary photography project, In The Yards.

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To see more from this project a full gallery is on my website here: http://www.matthewstaver.com/in-the-yards/


6 new OTR landscape photographs from 2 recent assignments

Below are 6 new non-traditional landscape photographs from my ongoing project, On The Road.  The photographs are not manipulated, and are an attempt to capture the beauty of the landscape as I pass, usually en-rout to an assignment.

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A pioneering backyard farm in Denver

A heavy, cold rain poured down on Debra Neeley as she set-up and opened her pioneering Green Gate Farm Stand Saturday morning, but dampen her spirit, or the enthusiasm of her customers it did not. As the opening hour of 9am passed, her front porch – turned farm stand – was packed with customers snatching up fresh herbs, eggs, greenery and tomato starter plants.

This might conjure a picture of life in a small rural town, or of a time long ago, but Debra Neeley is the proprietor of Green Gate Urban Farm and Gardens, a farm located in the backyard of her home in urban Denver, Colorado. She is a one of the first to take advantage of recently passed “cottage food” legislation to legally produce and sell home-grown produce and homemade foods from her residence.

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New OTR photographs from Wyoming road trip

A last minute assignment took me up to Gillette, Wyoming earlier this week.  Here are a few of the new OTR photos from the 750+ mile round-trip!

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Rainy drive home = new moody landscape photographs

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New OTR photographs – The spaces and places in between

Below is another addition to my ongoing project, On The Road; a series of non-manipulated photographs capturing the essence of a landscape in a very non-traditional way.  Often my work takes me to remote or rural locations that require hours of driving to reach.  The spaces and places in between offer their beauty as the miles roll by.  With these photographs I hope to capture a bit of the soul of the land I pass and a glimpse into the lives lived upon it.

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New Photographs: Growing Cannabis in Colorado

It is always a treat for me to meet and photograph a skilled entrepreneur,  farmer or  artist as they work to create something that has the potential to elevate an industry, transform  sentiment or upturn convention.  Recently I had such an opportunity, making photographs inside a Good Meds medical cannabis cultivation facility here in Denver.   Growing Cannabis (marijuana) in Colorado isn’t new, but with the rapid approach of legal recreational marijuana being available to those so inclined (and over 21) from shops in Denver on Jan. 1st, attention on the subject has greatly increased.

 

Farming indoors is a feat I used to associate with survival in a post-apocalyptic movie.  But over the last few years I have witnessed substantial crops being raised in warehouses across Denver.  The photographs below are a few from an indoor Good Meds cultivation facility.  The combination of entrepreneurship, agricultural skills and craftsmanship on display there was wonderful to experience.  While complying with complex regulation they successfully grow a variety of strains and create a truly artisanal product.

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OTR: Oil Boom Country – Bakken

I find myself back up in the Oil Boom country (the Bakken region) working on assignment.  The crazy weather  (snow + -20 + wind) makes for challenging photographic situations.  But the weather and logistics create a wonderful atmosphere for another installment of On The Road.  This project consists of photographs I create while driving to/from an assignment, usually on deadline, that hopefully captures the spirit of the landscape and place while utilizing photography in a novel way.

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Photographs of the 2013 hemp harvest in Colorado

The DEA did not show up to raid his field earlier this month so Ryan Loflin and a crew of volunteers harvested, by hand, the first major (known) hemp crop in The United States in over 50 years.    Ryan quietly amassed the illegal seeds from abroad and planted them earlier this year in about 60 acres of the same land he worked as a boy in a remote corner of Southeast Colorado.  In early October,  as part of a decision to optimize yield, he opted to harvest the entire crop by hand.  Instead of hiring migrant farm workers Ryan turned to twitter and facebook making a general call to anyone interested in participating in this historic event to go to his farm, camp and help harvest.  Friday night the crew began to assemble, most camping in tents inside the barn used the following day to store the harvested crop. People came from down the road, and as far away as Idaho and Texas to participate.  Saturday morning after filling out an indemnification contract, a breakfast of muffins, yogurt and coffee, Ryan and fellow hemp enthusiasts fanned out across the weedy hemp field plucking the green leafy stocks, now mature and heavy with seed, one by one, pulling out the entire plant by the roots.

 

Harvest weekend proved to be a visually interesting event full of colorful characters harvesting a crop in the still drought-plagued Southeastern corner of Colorado that directly reflects the changing attitudes and laws about Cannabis and Hemp in Colorado and around the country.  And it was all made possible by the entrepreneurial spirit of an enterprising farmer.

I made 3 trips to the farm and hope that the photographs below capture Ryan’s entrepreneurial spirit as well as showcase the undertaking in a visually interesting way.

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Documentary Photographs of Colorado Flood

The 2013 Colorado flood caused catastrophic damage along the entire Front Range, mountain communities, farmland and towns along the South Platte River.  Thousands of homes were damaged or destroyed, roads and bridges were washed away and several people were killed.  I spent an afternoon in Jamestown and a morning in Evans working to create a collection of photographs capturing a slice of the toll the flood inflicted on the people in its path.

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Photographs of Colorado Flood 2013

An unprecedented week of heavy rainfall across the Colorado Front Range has flooded mountain towns, larger cities, portions of Denver and rural agricultural lands.  I wanted to see how the more rural Colorado agricultural areas were affected, especially those situated along the South Platte River.  Floodwaters race down canyons in minutes, but it can take days to reach here.

Below are a few documentary style photographs from my trip through the area yesterday.

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New non-traditional landscape photographs

A set of new non-traditional landscape photographs capturing a bit more of the spirit of  rural Colorado.  I created these photographs while driving between editorial assignments recently.

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6 photographs at the intersection of man & nature

Another day began, as many promising days do, with myself in an unfamiliar car and rural miles extending ahead as far as I can see.  On this day the dreary morning was welcome; rain for the ranchers and farmers I was passing by and would soon meet is so deeply needed here.

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3 new non-traditional landscape photographs

3 new non-traditional landscape photographs attempting to capture an ethereal portrait of the landscape.

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Spirit of a Landscape

Early morning, struggle to get gear into car – last of the coffee slides off the frozen roof.  Thus this trip to South Dakota began but all was not lost; an emergency Redbull stored in the fridge replaced spilled coffee, and my attempt to capture a more ethereal portrait of the landscape seems to have been successful.

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Moody Landscape Photographs

Another two reasons I love this part of the country.  Here two moody landscape photographs I captured recently during a trip up to the oil boom area of North Dakota and Montana attempt to capture a bit of the beauty there.  These are part of my ongoing OTR project.

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The disappearing agrarian landscapes of Colorado’s Front Range

I used to drive I-25 to and from Denver and Fort Collins every week.  There was a stretch of close to 50 miles where a subdivision was not to be seen; corn, sunflowers and cows ruled the land.  Today much of that agrarian land has been planted with rows of houses.  Below are 6 photographs I captured of those disappearing agricultural landscapes during a drive home from Wyoming.

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Photojournalism – farming through the drought of 2012

Below is a portion of a series of photographs I created as part of a commission to document the relationship between agriculture and water.  2012 was a tough year to coax crops from the dry earth.  The drought coupled with high heat caused many crops across Colorado (and the nation) to fail.

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Hope for more of this in 2013

The sky is turning from black to blue, the street lights click off and people begin to stir outside as I sit drinking my first cafe-bought coffee of the New Year selecting photographs for a blog post showing destruction and hardship from the drought.  But first I wanted to offer this photograph, an addition to my growing OTR (On The Road) project, as hope not just for a less dry year but general hope for prosperity and a lack of smiting from the powers that be.

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OTR – photos of a cowboy + a home

I was stuck behind a cattle drive – honest!  The cowboy in the photograph broke off from the group, riding ahead through a field.