It’s Winter in Iowa

Out Standing in a Field

Out Standing in a Field

When I was a kid, my sense of humor ran to the obvious. I thought it hysterical to show one of my (three) grandmothers a sheet of white paper, and ask them what they thought of my drawing. They, of course knowing the drill, as I did this once a winter, would kindly ask “What is it?”

I, in glee, would reply “White cows in a blizzard.”

So, here’s an adaptation of the same – but this time you can see the cows (cattle, really) in their dark coats. The rest of the photo is playing true to the original version.

About Bo Mackison

I'm a photographer, book-artist, traveler, naturalist, and creator of the Contemplative Creatives Journey, An Online Workshop and Community and Desert Wisdom Cards and Workshops. Though often not well known, I find the desert a welcoming place - a healing space. Its mysteries and gifts transformed me several years ago. Since that first encounter, I return again and again to fill my well in what most people think of as a desolate region. I'd love to share my desert discoveries and wisdom with you. Please subscribe to receive my five part mini email course The Gifts of the Desert. It's my gift to you.


  1. This is stunning! Love how the white sky meets the white snow. Very peaceful and idyllic.

  2. burstmode says:

    It looks cold…fascinating, though. I keep staring at it.

  3. I always heard it as a white rabbit in a snow storm, but then again it would be hard to capture a lot of black rabbits in the same storm. Hehe, just funnin’ with you.

    In this case the white sky really worked with you.

    I always wonder about the cattle in all the weather. Don’t they get cold?

  4. Preston, they do get too cold at times. Last week, a lot of the farmers had to rig up some sort of shelter for the animals who typically stay outside.

  5. Oh, I love this shot. I love cows. I guess it’s the ranching blood in me. And to see them in the snow, with the sky as white as the ground, well, it’s very evocative, of a time and place. Really great.

  6. p.s., loved your white sheet of paper joke, too. Hadn’t heard that one. (Maybe it’s a Midwestern joke??)

  7. Richard Lovison says:

    Nice shot Bo.

    As a child I was taught a slightly different version of the joke. I would present the white sheet of paper as a cow eating grass. When asked where the grass was I would reply “the cow ate it all.” When asked where the cow was I would reply “why would the cow hang around if the grass was all gone.” Silly stuff. πŸ™‚

    Hey, I just bought an E-3 camera body package with vertical grip from Cameta. I guess I’m up there with the big boys now. πŸ™‚

  8. Rick – I think I like your joke version better than mine. Hey, great news on the E-3. I love mine, and am still trying to get a handle on the stuff it can do. Hopefully I will be learning new stuff about this camera and photography ’til the day I die! πŸ™‚

  9. Richard Lovison says:

    Bo wrote:

    “Hopefully I will be learning new stuff about this camera and photography ’til the day I die!”

    Or at least until the 16 or 20 megapixel E-4 – E-5 comes out. πŸ™‚

    I’m looking forward to shooting with it. I think I’m going to miss the mode dial though… it’s nice not having to go into the main menu to choose manual, aperture priority or shutter priority modes.

  10. great shot. My version of the white cow in a snow storm was “Polar bears in a snow storm.” we didn’t have too many polar bears on the loose in Chicago (my home town). I guess if I had been really creative I would have said “White Sox” in a snow storm. πŸ™‚

  11. Very nice shot, Bo. I enjoyed the story to go with it, too.

    I don’t know if the cows are cold, but they sure look it. I was watching the neighbor’s horses out in the snow today. At first they were running around, all frisky. Now they’re just standing in the snow, looking cold.

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