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I was only supposed to take Senior Pictures…

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This is my neighbor, Gino. He is a third generation Petaluman… and third generation ranch kid. He got his first cow when he was 14. Now he has 4 cows. Gino will be graduating in a couple of months and his mom wanted some senior photos. But not the yearbook kind, she already had to buy those, and she wasn’t that happy with them. She wanted to have some of Gino in his own environment…. so she called me… which was convenient because I live one house away… and because I like nothing more than to photograph in fields with farm animals.

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So we did some of the standard, look and smile photos… but then we went into the pasture and the clouds started to break-up, and the family members started joining the fun and even the cows couldn’t stay away… so senior photos turned into full family photo shoot… cows included.

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I have been wanting to do a 3-generation photo with this family for Project Here so it turned into the perfect occasion.

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After all the formal stuff was over, Gino changed back into his real senior attire. Dress-up photos are nice to have, but this is how Gino really spent his Senior year: dog, jeans, a baseball hat and truck… the cowboy hat above was just peer pressure… but maybe he’ll see how good it looks and trade in his baseball hat…. maybe.

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And below is a strange phenomenon I wanted to share with you all. I am not sure why or how, but on this particular shoot, for some reason, my camera kept taking photos of people from the nose down… and sometimes just the belly button down. Seriously, I don’t even remember taking them, and when I looked at the photos during the editing process, I wondered, “Why I would take that photo.”

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I think it was the magnetic draw of those belt buckles, even hidden under jackets my camera still gravitated towards them. But I guess it makes sense, because when Arann and I lived on his mother’s farm, the rancher neighbor across the street always accused me of taking photos of his butt… but something about tight jeans, big belt buckles, and boots is just graphically irresistible for my camera… must be the camera…. always blame the camera.

About the author paige green

Paige Green is a documentary and portrait photographer, whose storytelling approach to photography frequently addresses issues involving agriculture, land use, and food. Her work is featured in nine books and has been published in Glamour, National Geographic Traveler, New York Times Magazine, Conde Nast Traveler, GQ, Country Living, House Beautiful, and Culture. Paige lives in Petaluma, CA with a house full of boys.

All posts by paige green →

One Comment

  1. Hey paige I don’t know if it’s just me, but all but the last 2 photos showed up. I want to see more!

    Reply

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