I grew up in a place that got little snow. When winter weather happened in central North Carolina, it was something special. Now I live in a place that gets a lot of it, and it’s not so special. Is this how it works for everyone? You like winter weather if you don’t get much of it, but live in it, and it gets old quickly?
Well, at least snow falls white, and not some more depressing color like grey or black. If it did, these photos, by Bill Coleman, wouldn’t look as nice as they do. Taken from the Amish farms and snowscapes pages at amishphoto.com.
You might also like:
Question on the Amish? Get answers to 300+ questions in 41 categories at the Amish FAQ.
Oh, they are beautiful pictures. I really enjoy them. I may have said this before but I have a Bill Coleman puzzle, I really enjoy.
To Marilyn, New York State of Mind: Sometimes I wish I could click on your name to go to your blog. I like to read there about the Old Order Mennonites. When you leave a reply, have you thought about filling in your website information (optional)? Then I think your name would be underlined and we could click on it. Otherwise, I Google search for your blog. But it’s up to you.
I like the third photo with something like steam coming off the red barn roof.
NEW YORK STATE OF MIND
Not knowing when Marilyn might be able to post her link, I will do it for her (with apologies for jumping the gun on her behalf) both in the “website” field of the Response form and just here for copy/paste use.
OKAY - IT DIDN'T WORK
Putting the URL in the Website section of the response form does not seem to do anything. Sorry.
I grew up in winter weather,in NY state, loved it!! Still love it if I don’t have to go out in it much, LOL. I think that is due to getting older. It is beautiful when it snows, especially before the sanders get out and turn it into brown mush.
The pictures are incredible and remind me of my younger days. I would play in the snow for hours as a kid, now the thought of having to shovel it makes me cringe. As a kid, shoveling was fun, and a good way to make extra money. I’m thinking about heading south next winter, LOL.
These are all such beautiful pictures. Love his work.
Snow, beautiful snow. How I miss it.
If that fool groundhog comes out of his hole on February 2nd and gives us a weather forecast, I’m gonna boot him back into his den. We have had about three days of winter weather this winter, and next to no snow. This is not right. I grew up in NW PA, where winter used to mean snow and lots of it. As a child, I didn’t hear many sleighbells, but I heard another kind of winter music: chains on tires before “snow tires” were invented.
We also live in an area with a lot os cold, and snow. Ny Hudson valley.I realy dislike snow and cold weather. But my family and friends are here, soooo I will remain her ontop of our mountain, with awful winters. I do feel any pictures of farm life such as the Amish ones shown are beautiful. But ilike farm landscapes inany weather, and those of an era we have long left. To be on an Amish farm for one day working, eating, and learning their true ways is a desire of mine. Sleigh bells, children laughing playing inthe snow, animals inthe fields, a wonderful site. But not for 3 months. A wheel is enough for me. Wonderful photos thank you
In the last picture, Those girls don’t even have a coat on !!!!
These are so beautiful..
What beautiful photos of Amish snowscapes! Bill Coleman has a gift for capturing the true beauty that many of us don’t “see.”
Wonder what the Amish opinion is?
I asked Mark about the Bill Coleman photographs. He wondered what the Nebraska Amish people thought about it. They are the ones being photographed. They are a very conservative Amish group. The most conservative, probably. Mark said that he just cannot imagine that they appreciate having their pictures taken. Mark said that it definitely would NOT be appreciated in the Belle Center, Ohio community. It’s almost like the Amish are being stalked to have their photos snapped to make money for a non-Amish man.
Don, I asked that same question, because I had similar thoughts. Of course some Amish do not want to be photographed. Like a thousand other things though, it seems one approach or belief is not shared by all. Share this interview with Mark: https://amishamerica.com/bill-coleman-on-amish-photography/
Once you read that and look at some of the up-close, obviously posed photos it’s pretty clear Mr. Coleman has developed a relationship with the folks here. I’m sure others would disapprove but it is what it is.
A few years ago I was in a Nebraska Amish home and was shown an album with posed photos taken of the (Amish) woman of the house by an English friend. Completely complicitly, she had no problem with it and seemed happy to have them. No, not what I expected.
You might also show or tell Mark about these photos.
So this is one of a long list of things that have surprised me…and I still don’t quite get it 🙂
Don I would also add–and I don’t mean this critically in any way–that 95% of Amish would not agree with having a telephone in the home, a practice you recently wrote is permitted in Mark’s community.
I am not here to judge either practice, phones or photos, myself…I just take this to mean different people decide to draw lines in different places.
I have found that even within communities, there are vast differences between different people & how they live. My sister in law’s Amish neighbors came over once or twice every week to watch tv for years and we all know its not permitted in an Old Order Community. They also didnt mind photos being taken of them and I’ve seen quite a few of them.
Im with you Eric.. Im not here to judge.. I’ve enjoyed knowing and doing business with the Amish I do. No one is the same no matter who you are.
Pure, white snow is like an empty canvas. Bill Coleman “sees” the composition and locks it in time for us to enjoy. Some of these (especially the 4th photo) look more like watercolor prints than photographs. In all but one photo, faces aren’t shown, and in the one with the buggy facing the camera, the faces are so small as to be nondescript.
As you say, Erik, it is what it is. While I wouldn’t make it a point to photograph the Amish, they must know that if they’re on a public thoroughfare (I don’t know if that’s the case in every photo here, however), they’re game for anyone to view or photograph or film or draw or paint them (like the rest of us—whether WE like it or not).
I always enjoyed Coleman’s photos. I have several of his books and purchased photos from him as well.
The Amish people where he goes to photograph know him, so they have no objection of him being there.
Which shows you, it’s always good to built a positive relationship through the years.
...but live in it...
Snow is an interesting thing in Canada, people love to hate it, they hate it when they have to go to work, but when its recreation time, they love snow. I like the way snow looks even in city areas. I know of neighborhoods in my community where there are older buildings, from before WW2 and the snow makes them look particularly lovely, especially the different roofs levels and different architectural element create.
That said, yes, one can get tired of snow and winter quickly, especially if it just piles on and piles on, especially, I think if you get no enjoyment out of it on some level.
I love the creativity that a snowy winter brings, ice sculptures, otherwise odd sports (think of some of the Olympic events for an instance, even as a Canadian I have to wonder with an American sounding “Huh?” at some of them).
I might be odd, but I love the sound of a howling wind in the winter at night. That always spelled winter for me. I wonder though how well constructed my childhood house was, or where I currently live when I hear that noise.
Oh, and snow and ice on the windows always look so pretty by the way.
Bill Coleman has a way with composition that I love. Bright color in a single item or a string of colored items is beautiful no matter what he does.
Love the snow pictures, Erik. So beautiful. Bill Coleman can sure capture the perfect images!
Taking photos of the Amish
I asked Mark about this photo taking thing. He said that among most of the New Order Amish it is permitted to own cameras and pose for pictures. Many of the Amish Belle Center fellowships allow posing for photos. Mark said that a number of years ago Belle Center allowed posing for photos, as well. However, the community took a step back and it is no longer allowed to own a camera or to pose for photos. If you go to and do a search on “Amish Harmony” you’lll see a photo of Mark with the Middle District youth of Belle Center. They didn’t pose for this picture. It was just taken of them while they were singing. Nobody gets in trouble for this. But, if they had posed for the photographer on purpose they would have been asked to make a confession in church.
Don that is interesting, thanks for getting back on this. It’s always easier to fast-forward to something new than to rewind a technology no matter who you are. Good for them that they acted on that conviction.