Taking night photos is always fun, and produces exciting new photography. January’s cold nights can be especially dark with a bright star-lit sky. The only downside is–it’s cold! It was around 5ºF when I took these photos. Besides the fingers and camera getting cold, it was a lot of fun with desirable results.
If you’re wondering how I was able to capture the stars–I used a Canon 5D Mark II with the ISO set higher than normal for daylight shooting, and a Canon f1.4 lens. The 1.4 lens allows the camera to grab as much light as possible in as short of time as possible.
Taking the tractors out for a nice winter stroll is a lot of fun–especially when you are able to take more than one out at a time! Here’s a video I shot of the John Deere Model A and Model 630. I was riding the A (same tractor that I restored), so the video mostly shows the 630.
I’ve always enjoyed the look of the 20/30 series two-cylinder John Deere tractors. Once upon a time (before I was born), we had a 630 on our farm. I believe they had a loader on it, and used it to load hay with, but I’m not quite certain. Because of this, the 630 has always had a special interest to me.
A quick history on the 630. If you know me, you know I enjoy the John Deere Model A. The A was replaced by the 60, and the 60 was replaced by the 620, and the 620 was replaced by the 630. In other words, the 630 is basically a late-fifties Model A.
I knew I would like to own a 630, I just didn’t think the opportunity would present itself quite as quickly as it did. My dad has a co-worker that was talking about selling a 630, and knowing that I enjoy the two-cylinders, dad mentioned to me that he was selling one. It wasn’t running at the time, and had been sitting for quite a few years.
Of course, I had to jump on the opportunity. Who wouldn’t, right? I ended up purchasing the tractor, and was fortunate that my grandfather was also able to go with me to pick up the tractor. As much as I enjoy spending time with grandpa, it’s even more fun getting an old tractor with him! He also grew up on and spent his entire life on a farm, and as such gives us opportunities to talk about the “good old days” when these tractors were in their prime.
To spare you the boring details, I had to do quite a bit of work on the tractor throughout the summer and fall. I don’t mind a good project though–that’s the best way to learn about a machine and become acquainted with it.
Although the project is not completed, as you can see from the photos and video, the project paid off. I now have a nice 1959 John Deere 630 to enjoy.
As I mentioned in the previous post, I had the opportunity to go drill (plant) oats with my 1947 John Deere A. I had a great time doing it, but forgot to take some good photos afterwords! So, yesterday I was able to go out with the Canon 5D MK II and spend a few minutes with one of my most popular photo subjects.
This year I took the opportunity to have a little fun with planting oats in one of our smaller fields. I used the 1947 John Deere Model A that I recently restored, as well as our old grain drill (aka planter, late 1950s). It may not have been the quickest way to plant the oats, but I, and the dogs, had a lot of fun doing it!
The three videos here show us getting the drill ready and making sure everything on it works. The second video shows the John Deere 4230 disking the field. Last year we used the Model A as well as the John Deere 2010 to plow the field. Since it was plowed last fall, you disk it before you plant it to break up the larger chunks into a more fine powder, so the drill can do accurately seed the crop. The final video shows the actual planting process.
I finally got around to finishing the photo journal 2012. As you may notice, there are many photos of me feeding cattle. That’s because with the days as short as they were, my schedule basically consisted of going to work, coming home and feeding the cows, then getting home just in time for it to get dark.