John Churchman is a Vermont Artist and Photographer. He and his family live on a small, northern Vermont farm, thus many of the sights that capture his attention are very much grounded in the daily farm-to-table life he is so closely familiar with.
A March 22 Burlington Free Press headline reads, “Vermont Photographer Turns Mud to Money”. The article begins, “John Churchman knows mud.” It continues, “As people across much of Vermont struggle with rutted roads, huge frost heaves and other treacherous travel in mud season, Churchman is reveling in it.” In fact, Churchman recently sold a muddy-road photo to the Subaru Company for an upcoming advertising campaign.
I mention this because it is a good example of the sort of creative spirit that seems so prevalent here in Vermont. I am certain this is true of other states, but I imagine that just as each state has its own atmosphere, so do the individuals who make up each community have their own type of creativity. Each is unique.
In a setting where we still value and seek to preserve closeness to the land, both for the sustenance it provides and for the benefits of sharing it with diverse species, it is most natural that some Vermonters might make it their business to actually live off this land; even behind the lens, in this case.
This time of year, many of the unpaved roads that lead to our homes, or to the home of our dreams, require our full attention and a good measure of back-country driving skills. I have often heard Vermont residents who have lived here for decades, some even for nearly a full century, announce in a spontaneous moment of musing, “I have driven down this road every day for my entire life and I never get tired of the scenery.”
Through their artistic expression, John Churchman and other Vermont photographers bring our communities and horizons to the rest of the world. In truth, they take notice of the details that we miss on a daily basis, like the beauty of a mud-sculpted landscape. As they do this, they nudge us to remember how fortunate we are to be surrounded by the rich soil that nestles and nourishes an abundance of many-colored foods for body and soul.
Click HERE to read the Burlington Free Press Article by Dan D’Ambrosio
Click HERE to visit John Churchman’s websites