Greetings and salutations! In advance of some upcoming changes to my “Shooting from the Hip” blog, I have decided to spin off posts about my Common Ground project to its own separate bl…
I envision this blog as place for me to post new diptychs, show some of my favorites from the past, give updates on print availability and keep the dream alive to one day have Common Ground published in book form.
On July 2, 2002, Jean and Harlow Cagwin watched as their home — the last remnant of their 118-acre cattle farm in Lockport, Illinois — was torn down clearing the way for a new housing development. Several years later, Ed and Amanda Grabenhofer and their four children moved into the new Willow Walk subdivision, their house just yards from where the Cagwin’s home once stood.
Common Ground introduces us to the lives touched by this land, as photographer Scott Strazzante takes us on a visual journey exploring the differences and similarities of these two families while simultaneously asking us to look at what is common among us all.
Scott Strazzante of the Chicago Tribune and Jenn Ackerman, a graduate student at Ohio University, won top honors as 2008 Southern Photographer of the Year and 2008 Southern Student Photographer of the Year, respectively, this weekend. Strazzante also won Best of Show with his diptychs entitled “Echoes from the Past” pairing his coverage of a disappearing family farm shot earlier this decade and new homeowners on the same land shot in 2007. The winners were officially announced today by yours truly on the closing day of the Southern Short Course in News Photography in Charlotte, N.C.
Thirteen years ago, Chicago Tribune photographer Scott Strazzante began visiting a family farm. Over the years he took thousand of pictures of the couple and their land and all the creatures that lived there. In 2002 he chronicled the farm’s end. Call it death, if you will. Call it progress, if you must
“…I was determined to one day go back to their land and see what happened to it…
He found, on what had been the farm’s 119 acres, a subdivision called Willow Walk. The results are a photographic wonder, as the past bleeds into and is reflected in the present.