Steve & Mark: California Farming

Have you ever climbed around equipment, maybe some large rocks, or the backstage area of a theater or concert venue with a camera around your neck? We find more often or not straps get in the way, but they are a necessary evil, you can’t just lay your camera anywhere when you need your hands…

The Chopstick Guys have been working on a project capturing images of the California Farmer, the men and women that put food on our table as well as tables around the globe. These unsung heroes go unnoticed by most of us. Why? Because they don’t seek the limelight, they love their families, love their leisure time but mostly they are busy working hard, sometimes late into the night under the glow of a single bulbed work light because the crops don’t wait, the cattle need feed and we want fresh fruit in the grocery store.

We had the privilege of working a couple of weeks ago with our friend Tom. Tom farms 800 acres of California Almonds in the same small town he grew up in. We spent some time just seeing his operation before we started shooting. Tom not only grows the almond but he hulls them (the hulls get sold as cattle feed to a local rancher), shells them and packages them all within steps of his home, it’s quite an operation.

Here’s where Spider Holster comes in, we took our first portraits of Tom in the shelling building among the mass of equipment used for the process. We were able to quickly holster our cameras leaving our hands free to climb ladders and move lights around. Not once did we hear Mark say “Steve, any idea where I set my camera down?”. Next we found ourselves navigating around equipment and silos, let us tell you, those silo stairs are narrow and you need both hands to hang on! The cameras went back in the Spider Holster and our hands were once again freed up to hang on a rail.

We have over 40 years combined experience behind the lens, but on that shoot we sounded like kids with a new favorite toy, we could move things, climb things, and even fix Tom’s hat with ease because we had on our Spider Holster Pros and our hands were free! Free at last, free at last, thank God Almighty our hands were free at last!

Steve & Mark are Spider Ambassadors. See their profile here. They each shoot with a SpiderPro Single Camera System, and a Large Lens Pouch.