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amish country in holmes county, ohio

After Jessie’s Bat Mitzvah on Saturday, I got a few hours of sleep and then took the first flight out to Akron, Ohio to photograph Katie and Vic’s wedding at Quail Crest Farm on Sunday. The wedding was so beautiful and local; I’ll write more when I have photos to show, but I was really impressed with the choices Katie and Vic made with their decoration and clothing options.

Meanwhile, I’m taking a couple of days off from administrative work (much needed!) since I had a double-header work weekend. We’ve been enjoying the farmlands of Ohio. It was lucky enough that the wedding is close to one of my best friends, and even luckier that yesterday’s work holiday meant that Ali got to stay out and enjoy the little vacation with me.

One of my favorite things to do out here is to go driving through Amish country. Sarah, who was a history major, is one of those people who grew up out here in the country and has that common sense understanding about most things. She gives the best tours, and knows just where to take me to see amish people out and about on their daily life – hanging out the clothes, taking a bike ride to the neighbor’s house, doing yard and farm work, and the kids playing in the yard. We have this quest to always find good amish bread and cheese, and we usually tear off large hunks of each and eat our way through the drive.

I’ve always been fascinated by Amish culture. I love that there’s an entire population who steadfastly refuse to follow American cultural norms. I love that they cook food that’s delicious and bad for you, and straight from raw ingredients without English preservatives. I love to see people who really dress like that and work the land, who give their young girls pony carts to drive around, and who cook and live without electricity.

It’s difficult to take photos of Amish people, out of respect to their culture and preference not to be photographed (you can see the pious disapproval on the face of the little girl on the right below). When I am photographing in Amish country, I try to be as discreet as possible, shooting from the car driving by or from behind. I really don’t want to be disrespectful but I can’t not bring my camera either. This culture is too rich and wonderful not to be documented.

Amish country Ohio

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