Legacy of Cotton Fields Back Home

For those compelled to read meanings into images, this should be pretty easy to interpret. A huge expanse of sky over Louisiana farmland, bisected by a two-lane road flanked by a single, solitary tree and small, deserted sharecropper's shack on one side and miles of towering telephone poles on the other that might bring to mind the imposing dominance of technology over disappearing traditional agricultural economies of the past. I didn't capture this image reading the whole set of metaphors, but rather a more practical use in mind; reference while scouting locations for scenes in a film (the Great Debaters). I was affected by the starkness of the single house and tree miles from anything urban—the kind of place where I'd want to live. It was later that the imposing dominance of those poles made themselves elemental to the composition and I recognized their significance in statements about rural tradition and progress, etc. I can't remember a time without transmission lines of some sort, but I can remember when there were more telephone lines. It's easy for me to romanticize a scene without them, in which I'm driving a wagon down this long road through the wide expanse of fields.

Bodcau at La. Hwy. 2

When I see places like this, I'm reminded of the early Spanish and French explorers making their way through the Louisiana swamps, how strange it must have been to be approached by aboriginal hominids and trying to establish a means of exchanging information about directions, food and just what you're doing in the area in the first place. Most of the various tribes weren't immediately hostile to newcomers, as such encounters were often welcome opportunities for trade.

Backyard Louisiana Flood

Looking for another image tonight, I happened to glance into a folder of local birds I'd shot a couple of years ago. There are many pictures of this type out there now, but this one of mine that's particularly pleasant. It's easy to imagine the quiet  and calm of this place with egrets flying in to wade quietly looking for a meal of small fish.

La Casa de Cabras Felices

Just a few years back, while scouting locations about 30 miles out of Shreveport, a property owner showed me this old sharecropper's cabin his dad and uncle had moved piece by piece to this location from elsewhere on their farm. For someone as reclusive as me, this place offers unlimited charm, from the lowslung wooden porch, corrugated roof and bare, weathered wood exterior to the interior walls of discarded hardwood flooring throughout. Featuring electricity, well water, pond and large whispering pines, this place has appealed to me from the moment we drove up, I got out of my truck and stepped into pure, organic silence interupted only briefly by the low sound of a cow lowing far in the distance.