Monday, April 26, 2010

From My Window - Photos from Nebraska

Traveling for our family is a bit different than for many other people as all of us get motion sick save for Ryan . . . which means lots of looking out the window! I have heard others talk of crocheting, cross-stitching, reading, etc. in the car, and I can only imagine how nice that would be! But since those activities are not possible for me while traveling, I do one of my other favorite things . . . photograph.

The hours during our trip up to Nebraska for the funeral and then back home again often found me with my camera in my lap or in hand, ready and waiting for it to be put into use. "From the vehicle" photography has its challenges (especially on overcast days!) in trying to have the shutter speed set fast enough so that there isn't blurriness, while still having the photos light enough as well. Not to mention trying to 'frame' the photos, and attempting to keep out things such as telephone poles, other vehicles, roads, etc. It all makes for fun photography, though!

And while my "from the vehicle" photography skills are improving (I have lots of opportunity to practice!), I do some cropping/editing on some of the photos that are taken. Sometimes, though, in the few seconds available before passing a subject by, a photo is taken that can get by without any cropping/editing such as this windmill . . .

On some of the roads that we drove on where there was next to no traffic, Daddy stopped on occasion to let me photograph things like this singing Western Meadowlark (and yes, this photo was one of those that was cropped :) . . .

Western Meadowlarks have one of the prettiest songs! It was so enjoyable listening to him sing!

And then these turkeys . . .

These gobblers put on quite the show for us while we stopped and watched them. There were also a couple more gobblers here as well as a number of hens.

When traveling, there are a number of things that are my 'top favorites' to photograph . . . barns and old homesteads would fit this category. And when traveling through the Nebraska prairies, there are so many beautiful old barns, houses and other outbuildings! These are always a delight to see, and not only for one who likes to photograph them, but also for one who simply loves the character, architecture and beauty of these older buildings. (Such would be me. :)

Since most of the buildings are back in the trees, it's often difficult to get decent photos of them, but it is always fun to try! I'll refrain from sharing all the barn photos here (there are a lot of them!), and will simply share a few of the ones that turned out better . . .

This was one of the more unique barns . . . we don't see ones like this very often!

A big, old, red barn . . . my favorite color for barns
This is the second time that this barn and outbuildings were captured on my camera . . . two years ago when traveling to the reunion, they were photographed while the sun was setting, and the photo ended up being the desktop background on our computer for awhile.

While this building isn't a farmhouse or barn, it is one that I really like . . . it is an old one-room schoolhouse that my great-great-grandfather built. It is located just down the road from my great-great-grandparents' homestead.

In addition to the old farm buildings and farmhouses, I also enjoy photographing landscapes, rivers, and things like tractors working out in the fields . . .

Animals are another favorite to photograph, though farm animals (with cattle being the favorite :) are usually the only ones that work with "from the car" photography!

An Angus cow with her little calf . . . there were so many cows and calves in the pastures, and it was enjoyable seeing them all!

This trip, though, we had the opportunity to stop alongside the road a number of times (such as with the above turkeys and meadlowlark) to capture things such as this . . .

This photo was taken by Leah as the pheasant was outside her window. He was so pretty and let us watch him for quite a long time! The hen, however, quickly disappeared as soon as we had stopped.

The same pheasant again only he was outside my window this time. I loved the setting and then when the red-winged blackbird joined the scene, it made the photography even more fun!

During our time in Nebraska, we also drove by my great-great-grandparents' homestead, and while the gate to it was locked, we stopped to take a photo from the road . . . it's sad to see how much more the buildings have deteriorated over the winter (the barn especially) . . .

The lighting wasn't good for this photo, and with the trees and all, not much can be seen, but with knowing the history of the buildings, I like it anyway. :)

While I enjoy photographing most of the scenery in Nebraska, there is one thing that doesn't top the list . . . the cattle stockyards! :) This trip, however, Leah and I photographed a few of these to show to a friend of ours who had never seen them before . . . these are for you Mrs. Castlebury!

So while the drives are often long, with a camera in hand (and a big memory card :), there is plenty to keep this traveler happily busy as the hours and miles pass by!


  1. I'm glad you could find so many interesting subjects. I often wish that I could read in the car. It seems like it make the time pass faster. I've never had much success with pictures from a moving vehicle. Yours turned out well.

  2. Wow! I have never been to Nebraska. Well, I don't know anyone there. How long did you all drive? Do you all take turns? We have to when visiting family up north. In fact, we will be driving to NY to visit 2 sick relatives in a few weeks? Been saving our toll money for weeks now. Praying for your safe journey home. Enjoying your photos! Take care!

  3. Sarah, your barns remind me of some of the Cross stitch pictures that I have sewn. They are beuatiful, a real piece of history.

  4. i dont get car sick, but i do take pictures from th car often when we're traveling!!! :D Great photos!

  5. Hi Sarah,
    I just found your blog a couple of days ago and am really enjoying looking at your beautiful pictures!

    I agree... driving while working on projects just does not work out... I'm glad you were able to do something fun while on your trip, though! :)


  6. Thank you, Amy! :) Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to read in the car?! We unfortunate ones must instead find other things to do to make the time go by faster. ;)

  7. Thank you for your comment, Angie! The drive was about nine and a half hours, and when we travel, my Dad normally drives the whole way. He does such a good job! :) I hope that your all’s trip to New York will go well!

  8. That’s neat that you have cross-stitched barns before, Elizabeth! Right now I am looking for an old barn cross-stitch pattern . . . do you have any recommendations? Yes, like you shared, old barns are beautiful and a real piece of history. I’m glad there are still so many of them around!

  9. That must be nice to not get car sick, Taylor! And why am I not surprised that you take photos from the car when traveling . . . . . :) It's a lot of fun, isn't it?!

    Thank you for your comment! :)

  10. Welcome to my blog, Marissa, and thank you for your comment! It is always so nice to hear from those who are reading. :) And I look forward to visiting your blog as well! Thank you again!

  11. You sure do manage to get quite a few decent photos while driving, Sarah!!! :o)
    The drive through Nebraska looks like it's full of beauty... I especially like the first barn photo as well as the one room schoolhouse. You sure have an eye for knowing when to take the photo!

    I need to make a mental note to show a certain party the cattle stockyard photos... :oP :oD


  12. I love all your photos (especially the meadowlark!).

    All my life I always wished I could read in the car, but it would always make me feel sick. When I started riding in the front of our van, I found I was able to occasionally do cross stitch. For some reason, though, lately, it makes me sick. It could be that we've been driving on very curvy roads (for some reason that makes it worse)!

  13. Thank you for your much enjoyed comment, Ashley! And for your kind words regarding the photos. :) I hope that the certain party will ‘enjoy’ the ones of the stockyards! ;) :)

    Yes, the drive through Nebraska is full of beauty! It’s one of my favorite drives!

  14. Thank you, Joy! :)

    That must have been nice to be able to cross-stitch in the car! Though, that’s too bad that it has been making you feel sick lately . . . maybe it is just the curvy roads. Those type of roads are always worse for us, too!


Thanks so much for your comment! Each one is read and enjoyed. :)