abandoned

Deserted Homestead, San Luis Valley

 

Abandoned Homestead, San Luis Valley

Abandoned Homestead, San Luis Valley

I came upon this homestead as evening moved into night, the clouds of a passing storm moving off to the east. The loneliness of the stark-white walls against the deepening dark, the distant peaks, and the dry desert left the thoughts of humankind’s relationship with the dry places of the world on my mind for many miles.

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Abandoned Homestead, Douglas County, Wyoming

Abandoned Homestead, Douglas County

Abandoned Homestead, Douglas County

I have been asked myriad times why I tend to emphasize a sense of loneliness and isolation in many of my photographs, and I’ve pondered an appropriate answer for years.

Unsuccessfully.

In a previous post, I wrote how so many photographers admit the scene or location or emotion is speaking through them, but that as the artist, such symbiosis happens unwittingly. Just such an occasion here, I found this decaying homestead atop a lonely treeless hill in windswept eastern Wyoming during a spring squall, and before I knew it, I was making an image.

PlainSky, Nebraskans: National Geographics and Television in School Lunch Room, Seneca

National Geographic Magazines and Television, Seneca

National Geographic Magazines and Television, Seneca

District Six died more than 15 years ago.

It sits at the top of the southern ridge in Seneca, its Nebraska sky blue north wall peeling paint, its doors ajar, its roof rotted and open to the sky in many places. At the corner of the cafeteria one afternoon, I found these National Geographic magazines and old television, the gold border of the magazines a stark contrast to the brown, sienna and green of decay that dominates the rest of the room.

It is a stark reminder of the future of many small western Nebraska schools, as they face diminishing class sizes, reduced funding, and dying communities.

PlainSky, Nebraskans: Diner Sign, Harrison

Diner Sign, Harrison

Diner Sign, Harrison

I have been enamored with this collection of buildings for a considerable amount of time, especially for its potential as part of my PlainSky, Nebraskans, project. The repetition of the arcs in the buildings, the staccato lines fence, and vanishing point created by the sign all connected to make an image that exudes the essence of the landscape in western Nebraska, while the desolation itself is a warning for the future of the people of this area.