Over the last couple of months, a lot of people have asked why I am doing my Support Local Farmers project. After officially visiting over 20 farms this season I decided to do a post to answer that question!
Back before I was born, my family was in the farming industry. In fact, my great grand-parents were dairy farmers. I never got to learn from them, but I was always curious. Every summer, when we would come back to Maryland I was just fascinated by the old red barns. There was also something about the crop fields and seeing all of the animals out in the pastures that made me feel happy. From a very young age I always said that my goal was to own land with a view of the farms.
Because of my love for the farmland and animals, lifestyle farm photography is something that I have always been curious about. When I first got back to Maryland, I had a lot of downtime and I thought that I would try to get into it as a creative outlet. However, after making a few friends in the industry it soon became something that meant so much more. It became a personal project to show my support for the local farmers.
Right now, farmers are working in a thankless industry. They are under appreciated and because of rising costs they are also underpaid. In addition to the costs of farming being so expensive, the regulations become more strict by the year. Many family farms are being forced to close up and they are selling off because they simply can’t survive anymore.
For many farmers it is in their blood and it is a family legacy that they want to leave behind for future generations. For others it is a calling that they have felt since they were young. Whether they are 6th generation or 1st generation, every farmer says the same thing – that despite the struggles that they endure daily they wouldn’t trade it for the world.
I have met multiple families that work 2 and sometimes even 3 other jobs just so that way they can keep their farm alive. They do it because they sincerely love farming that much. Some farmers are up hours before sunrise and many are still out working long after dark. They don’t clock out at 5 o’clock. They can’t go home when equipment breaks and hope someone else fixes it. Their work never stops because they have to show up to keep the farm running. Farmers truly sacrifice so much. So to answer the question on why I am doing this, for the 2% that feed the 100%, I had to do something to say thank you.
To support some of these local farms featured above, here are links to their shops.
Catoctin Mountain Farms
Cedar Hill Farms
Daily Crisis Farm
Faithful Friends Farm
Liberty View Creamery
Lil Bit Farm
Local Homestead Products
May’s Milk Soaps
Misty Meadows Creamery
Morris Hill Farm
Red Power Valley Farm
If you or someone that you know is interested in having me come out to capture a working farm be sure to reach out! My project is completely free for the farm. In addition to my Support Local Farmers project I also offer marketing collections. Head over to this page to learn more.
I primarily travel to farms in Carroll, Frederick, Harford, and Washington County in Maryland. However, depending on distance I also travel to other Maryland locations as well as South Central Pennsylvania.