Sometimes these posts have no theme, like tonight’s. The opening photo was taken on a recent evening at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, located in the community of Wuthrich Hill, east of Taylor. I’ve photographed this church numerous times since 2009. In the warmer months the trees take away the view of the church’s facade, but at this time of year, things are clearer. This image was made well beyond sunset as the church lights came on to reveal its good bones. Note that the church indeed rests at the crest of a hill. The other photo was a scene by the railroad tracks in the Milam County community of Thorndale, about twenty minutes east of our Taylor home. I just like the image. So there you are.
An assignment in Georgetown this morning had me on the road a little ahead of dawn. It’s not always easy to get moving so early, but the visual rewards are sometimes good. These two photos, one loose, one tight, are morning mist at the San Gabriel River as I neared Georgetown. This meandering body of water is always beautiful. Even more so at certain times. Like this morning.
A couple years before we left Georgia to come home, I recall my excitement at seeing a Texas Longhorn roaming a field about two hours north of Atlanta. Longhorns, at least during my 29 years in Atlanta, were rare sights. Back in Texas, there’s no shortage of these beautiful animals. While I avoid continually photographing them for fear of wearing out a visual welcome, sometimes it’s best to give in. Longhorns are like royalty to many of us UT-Austin alums. These photos were made on two visits this week to Taylor friends Deby and Mike Lannen. Over the years, they’ve been gracious in allowing me access to their bovine babies. While you might be partial to the silhouettes, take a look at the others, including a three-week-old longhorn calf, a male. He could be a future Bevo
In 1974 I worked on a personal project with a writer friend. Our focus included the Peyton Colony, a freedmen’s community, and Mount Horeb Missionary Baptist Church, in Blanco, Texas. Peyton Colony was established after the Civil War by Peyton Roberts, a freed slave. He moved from Lockhart to Blanco County. The area grew as other former slaves and their families moved there. In 1874, Mt. Horeb was established, becoming a social gathering place for the community. The original church meeting place was replaced by the present church in 1917. These photos were made in October 1974 as the church marked its 100-year anniversary. You may get a sense of time and place when observing the clothing and motor vehicles included. To this day, the church survives. A couple of years ago my wife and I took a drive to find it. Thankfully, it hadn’t been overrun by Austin-area development.
Because I’m swamped with other things tonight, how about another one of those “this and that” posts? As you might know, late-day and evening photography are a joy. It’s one of the reasons for my distaste with Daylight Saving Time. When it’s still daylight at 9p.m. my style is seriously cramped. Anyway, here are three recent photos to consider this evening. Those grain elevators are smack dab in the middle of Taylor, next to Fannie R. Robinson Park. Careful viewers will note a darkened baseball field in the foreground. The other two are just barn images, one in the very late-afternoon, the other well into the night. That night barn was made during a full moon. The clouds obscured the moon, but there was still some good light in the night sky east of Granger, Texas. This and that, friends.
Maybe I’m in the minority, but I love days like the one we had here in farm country. Throughout the day and this evening we’ve had a fairly steady mist. Temperatures didn’t climb out of the 40s. And this was clearly mist, not rain. It was enough to coat the roads and fields, but so far it’s not a serious rain. These are a couple of views south of Granger, Texas.
One of the places I like to photograph is New Sweden Evangelical Lutheran Church, a beautiful edifice a few miles north of Manor, Texas. Although in Travis County, this area is definitely part of the Blackland Prairie farm country. After almost 30 years in the hustle and bustle of Atlanta, Georgia, seeing this church for the first time in 2009 was a visual gift. I recall driving along F.M. 973 from Taylor, looking into the far distance and seeing a spire, clear and distinct. You wouldn’t see anything like this in Atlanta, friends. Seeing that spire spoke a simple thing: I was home. The congregation for this church was established by Swedish immigrants in 1876. The church shown in these three photos was completed in 1923. The copper spire reaches 104-feet into the Texas skies. These are photos taken last evening. The first couple are meant to give a sense of the church’s place on the prairie. The last one (hopefully) brings it home.
These three photos were taken recently on a drive along a county dirt road I like, but only when it’s dry, as it was when these were taken. Most of the time I traverse the backroads of my part of Texas in an old Honda Accord. It’s probably not the best transportation mode for where we live, but it’s fuel-efficient. The first photo is self-explanatory. The second photo speaks to loose dogs, a common occurrence in rural Texas. These guys obviously wanted me to mosey along. I obliged. The last photo is a farmer getting a field ready for spring planting. Farmers often work well into the night. I like that work ethic.
This post, all photos made on this day, includes both the sun and the full moon, also called a Snow Moon. The first image, taken this morning in Salado, Texas, is our planet’s sun. Don’t mistake it for the moon, please. The other images were taken tonight east of Granger, Texas. They are indeed the full moon.
This was one of those nights where another post was planned, but when we were heading home with our groceries in Taylor, that Waxing Gibbous moon, over 98% visible, almost full, was looking pretty, made more interesting by numerous birds in the area. While watching the birds and moon, my wife was enamored with what was behind us, in the western sky. The color was divine. “Like a painting,” she said. So once the bird and moon fascination was over, I wandered into a weedy field at Taylor Regional Park. My wife was right. She usually is.