August 2017
The Herb Farm

What I Did On My Summer Vacation

 

I call this one “Blue Sunflower.” The colors strike me as energetic. Besides, they match my sofa in the den.

Summer, just like spring, fall and most of winter, does not offer me many opportunities to vacation. There’s always too much farm work to do. The older I get, just to walk from one end of the property and back wears me out.

Most of my vacations are spent exploring foreign places I have never seen. I don’t have to travel too far to find something new and exciting to photograph, and get lost in a whole new world of adventures, because there’s plenty to explore in my own backyard. If I look closely enough, I will be able to see things that are new and foreign to me.

For the next couple of months, I would like to show off some of my photography work. I have been building my collection and learning how to use different techniques to achieve some really rad images. (Yes, this old codger just used the term "rad.")

Over the past several weeks, the rain has been plentiful, but that makes getting out into the fields a nasty, muddy mess! I shouldn’t complain about it because in 2016 it was a dust bowl around here and, besides, I like my job.

So instead of pissing and moaning about the weather not being idyllic on the days when I want it to be that way, I spent those days learning about creative software. Adobe Creative Cloud is my new best friend. I can catalog all of my photographs, edit the ones that need editing, turn flowers into spaceships and make presidents do things that make me blush. I can now edit my video footage and make sense of it all, design posters for all my farming buddies going to local farmers markets and edit all of my audio tracks.

   

Berry season at the farm starts around the end of February with strawberries and ends about the beginning of September with late-producing figs. Here’s a couple of stylized blackberries for your viewing pleasure.

 

In this column, I want to show off some of my early works of weirdness, while not being too far off the subject.

Hmm. Quick thought … did I log any herb photos for this column? OK! Yes, I did. Ricin, echinacea, sunflower and whatever the aphids are trying to kill.

Sitting back in my squeaky office chair with a cup of hot coffee, listening to the notification signal on the fairly smartphone letting me know I have mail, messages or a phone call that I can instantly respond to is one of the simple pleasures of my life. All the while, I am working on editing pictures or videos.

You know? Travel pictures can be boring. How many pictures of the Eiffel Tower have you seen and how many were the exact same angle? I’ll tell ya, if I have the chance to go back to Paris, you can bet I’ll find a new twist to capture it all!

 

The aphids look extremely lit-up on this plant stalk. It’s almost like they have LEDs in their bellies.

My vacation pictures these days come from my explorations on the farm and I am always looking for different ways to present my subjects.

These pictures are all images I captured on the farm while just walking around with a camera. In fact, these pictures are a couple of years old and you likely have seen most of them before. I just chose to show you a different perspective by using different color balances and filters. All of these pictures have a story. All of these pictures are framed and hanging in my home. If you have any questions about how I achieved the final image, simply email me.

Next month, I’ll have a whole ‘nother bunch of photographs taken on the farm I want to show you. They won’t be quite as abstract as these but they will offer a different perspective on the wildlife on the farm.

I’m hungry! Let’s eat!

 

MISS OPIE'S GUAC-AROUND-THE-CROCK GARDEN FRESH SUMMERTIME GUACAMOLE

(This stuff really gets me going!)

3 ripe avocadoes and equal parts garden fresh tomatoes
1 lime, juiced
½ Valencia orange, juiced
1 small Spanish onion, finely diced
1 large jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
¼ cup cilantro, minced
Salt and pepper, to taste

Dice avocadoes and tomatoes. Put in a large serving bowl. Add lime and orange juices right away to prevent avocadoes from oxidizing. Add onion, jalapeño, cloves and cilantro. Toss with salt and pepper.

 

You’d better make a double batch if you’re having company. It’s more than just a chalupa topping!

Send me some of your pictures from your garden. I’d love to see them.

I eat my yard! You should eat yours, too!

Until next time, remember to watch your salt and sugar, drink plenty of pure water, and breathe in and out!

Thanks for reading!

For more information, email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. I’ll answer your questions and I enjoy the emails!

Be sure to find me on Facebook at Herb Farmer-The Herb Farm.