Very little gives me the photography itch more than rustic buildings, and one building I’ve been wanting to do a photography project with for a very long time is the old Bagwell ranch house. When my great grandparents first got married, they built a two-story adobe house out on the ranch just outside of community formerly known as Los Cerritos (sadly, it no longer exists). They lived there for a while, but then my great grandpa was called to serve a mission and my great grandma moved into town on the most northern street in Manassa. The house wasn’t lived in for long (and later had a fire that thankfully didn’t manage to burn it down), but it’s still a symbol of my roots and I love it.

Taking photos in an old house with no lighting and extreme contrast between what’s outside and what’s inside can be pretty difficult. I wanted to capture the ambient light and the detail of the interior while still capturing the scene outside through the windows. It was a sunny day with reflective snow on the ground making it even more difficult. The technique I used is called HDR (high dynamic range) photography. Essentially, every photo is a combination of three or more separate shots with different exposures. The shots with the longest exposures (usually about 1/10 of a second) allow you to see all of the detail of the interior while the shots with the shortest exposures (as fast as 1/1200 of a second because it was so bright outside) allow you to see what’s outside. By combining the different exposures in Photoshop, I can create a photo with the entire range of light. Really, it’s kind of a pain in the butt and it takes forever, but I think they turned out pretty cool.

Most of the photos in this post are done with HDR photography, but some are not. All of the photos inside the house and the lambing shed and the photos of the other old houses were done with HDR. Pretty much everything else was just normal photography. Also, I apologize about the dead cow.

P.S. I have no idea what rustique means. I just thought it sounded cool. That, and it temporarily satiated my weird obsession with alliteration.