Feeding Time - Oakesdale, Washington

There are plenty of barns in the Palouse that one could capture on digital film. I should know, as Jeff Clow and I scouted almost 100 of them last August. Of all of the ones I have shot, this one is one of my favorites. Why? For two reasons.

First, I love red barns. There is something about how the red stands out against the blue sky and green crops that make photos pop. Red is a very popular color for barns and came about by accident. According to the Farmers Almanac, hundreds of years ago farmers would seal their barns with linseed oil, which is an orange-colored oil derived from the seeds of the flax plant. To this oil, they would add a variety of things, most often milk and lime, but also ferrous oxide, or rust. Rust was plentiful on farms and because it killed fungi and mosses that might grow on barns,  it was very effective as a sealant. It turned the mixture red in color.

The second reason, I love this barn are the horses. Of the four times I have been there, the horses have always been out, although in different locations throughout the barnyard. My first time, they were in perfect position, standing by the side of the barn, making the horses the predominant subject. The time I shot this, they were toward the back of the yard, feeding on their own personal pile of hay, making the barn more of the predominant subject.