Before They’re Gone

I’ve had the images in this post on standby. It includes some of the local cabins, barns and mining buildings within my radius. The images were all made in the later half of 2022 and I’ve been saving them, waiting until I had enough for this blog set. Some of these are abandoned, some are restored, some are historic and some are still in use. Whatever the case I think they all have character, and I had fun shooting them … before they’re gone!

An old barn situated in an area with willows takes on morning light
‘Barn In The Willows’ © Denise Bush
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A headframe belonging to the Colorado Boy mining operation remains as a reminder of days gone by.
‘Colorado Boy Remains’ © Denise Bush
An old log cabin and autumn aspens create a quaint and nostalgic scene.
‘Aspens Beside A Cabin’ © Denise Bush
An old, abandoned boarding house for miners is getting engulfed by trees under a stormy sky.
‘Boarded Up Boarding House’ © Denise Bush
An old red barn catches late day, warm light on a
‘Old Red Barn’ © Denise Bush
An old style barn and house reside in a lovely setting, in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado
‘Barn With Antler Wreath’ © Denise Bush
An old cabin at the National Belle mining site remains with other evidence in the background.
‘National Belle Remains’ © Denise Bush

Gimme Shelter

I am grateful that interesting old structures keep finding me! They call to me to stop and put my camera to work. It’s a way of documenting them before they are gone forever. And it’s fun! Over the years many of the subjects of my ‘Remnants & Remains’ captures have disappeared. I am glad I had a chance to add them to my collection. Other times places that have interested me are changed in a way that makes them less attractive. I find myself wishing I had photographed them when I had the chance. The lesson … stop and shoot … don’t wait! The following are finds that go back to early spring as well as more recent.

A portion of an Old West settlement acts as a frame for the ominous sky and mountain beyond.
‘Rustic Framing’ © Denise Bush
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Remains from a small, abandoned settlement demonstrate building with materials readily available.
‘Rocky Shelters’ © Denise Bush
An old log cabin falls apart amid new aspen trees in spring.
‘Open Door’ © Denise Bush
A barn no longer strong enough collapses under years of harsh winters and strong summer sun.
‘Collapsed’ © Denise Bush
An small tin cabin takes on character as it weathers years of seasonal elements.
‘Little Tin Cabin’ © Denise Bush
Structures from a time gone by show the effects of time and weather.
‘Door Number Two’ © Denise Bush
An abandoned church strikes a dramatic scene with storm clouds hovering above.
‘Church Without A Steeple’ © Denise Bush

See my entire ‘Remnants & Remains’ Collections HERE!
notecards, unframed, framed, canvas, acrylic & metal prints available

Weathered Characters

Friends and followers of this blog know I can’t go too long without posting images of old structures … shacks, cabins, barns and other mining and agriculture buildings. I just can’t resist these weathered characters! They seem to fit in with the land much more appropriately than new buildings while stirring the imagination of days gone by. Little details and often a sense of place adds to their stories. Just when I begin thinking I’ve found and photographed all the local characters, another finds and calls to me, and my camera!

An old barn looks on the brink of collapse under a spring sunset sky.
‘Old Ranch Sunset’ © Denise Bush
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A little cabin looks as if it is in hiding, among the aspens and evergreens.
‘Little Hideaway’ © Denise Bush
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A small hunting cabin appears even smaller in a wide, open landscape.
‘Hunting Cabin’ © Denise Bush

A tiny log cabin survives among some rusty ranch equipment in a canyon in Colorado.
‘Rustic & Rusty’ © Denise Bush

A lttle red shack, leaning and far beyond repair, has lost all hope.
‘Little Leaner’ © Denise Bush

An old miner’s cabin includes a front porch built on a rocky foundation.
‘Rocky Foundation’ © Denise Bush

An old cabin, missing a roof is a weathered reminder of those who lived below the mountain years ago.
‘Mountain Cabin Relic’ © Denise Bush
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Disappearing Act

It’s happening all across America … cabins, shacks, barns and evidence of our heritage are disappearing! Made from natural materials they are returning to their beginnings, to end their stories in this world. I’ve learned to capture their existence when I see them. They may be gone before I’m there again. When I look around I wonder what will be the historic structures of tomorrow. Made from plastic and other man-made materials I fear they will not be as intriguing as those we can still find today … if we look.

‘Cabin Entry’ © Denise Bush

‘Damage From Above’ © Denise Bush

‘Rusty Ranch’ © Denise Bush

‘Sprouting Cabin’ © Denise Bush

‘Nowhere Cabin” © Denise Bush

Country Findings

Well … I’ve been at it again … roaming the countryside looking for something, anything, that speaks to me! This set combines some country charm with historic remains. Some of these images were shot on a fun group outing with two photo friends, and others on enjoyable solo adventures, wandering back roads. I thoroughly enjoy both types of outings and feel I have a good balance. I have a friend who likes the same subjects as me and we get together once or twice a month to scout and shoot. It’s great to be able to bounce ideas off one another and enlightening to see how different or similar our images are when we are finished editing them. We’ve traded Photoshop know-how and other tips and tricks, gadgets and more. We have a list of places a little further from home we want to visit together. (Thanks for being my friend, Angie!) As mentioned, I also enjoy going out on my own and do so most often. Creating work when I am in this solitary state is important … it is self-expression, influenced only by me. It’s quiet and I can immerse myself into my surroundings, becoming at times, a zen-like experience. I hope you like these country findings! Let me know you were here by leaving a note in the comments link at the end of this post!

‘Little Cabin & Outhouse’ © Denise Bush
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‘Outhouse With Red Door’ © Denise Bush
notecards, unframed, framed, canvas, acrylic, & metal prints available

‘Little Cabin In Aspens’ © Denise Bush

‘Growing Up All Around’ © Denise Bush
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‘Store Open’ © Denise Bush

‘Before It’s Gone’ © Denise Bush

‘Deserted Dream’ © Denise Bush

‘Rusty Red Roof’ © Denise Bush

‘Looming Sky Over Ranch’ © Denise Bush

‘Storm’s Approach’ © Denise Bush


I didn’t realize how many photos with structures I’ve shot recently until I started reviewing my folders. I like to work my photography in stages … shooting mode, processing mode, then posting. Processing is often necessary to decide whether or not I like a particular image and if it’s worthy of showing on my blog. After I’ve processed several different shoots I like to review them and put them in collections. Sometimes I set aside images when they fit an idea for a future post. I find that showing a set of related images is often stronger than showing just one, especially when blogging. Images that I think would make good wall art end up on my online store site and favorites will likely be included in my traditional year-end gallery.

Somewhere in there I try to keep up with my awesome fellow photogs whether they blog or use Facebook. I appreciate the views and comments of others which not only encourages me but let’s me know if my stories are being conveyed. Feedback often helps me decide which images to print or include on my store website. Thank you to my visitors and followers … I appreciate you very much!

‘After The Storm’ © Denise Bush

‘Divide House In Blizzard’ © Denise Bush

‘Barn Below Mountain’ © Denise Bush

‘Shack Among Willows’ © Denise Bush

‘Leaning Barn Under Blue Sky’ © Denise Bush

‘Leaning Barn & Buildings’ © Denise Bush

‘Leaning Barn In Winter’ © Denise Bush

‘In A Field’ © Denise Bush

‘A True Grit Winter’ © Denise Bush

‘Telluride Way’ © Denise Bush


Along Country Roads

One of my favorite things to do is to take a drive in the country looking for interesting subjects to photograph. It’s a great cure for cabin fever and I enjoy it even more when I capture images worth processing and posting. Somedays that doesn’t happen but I often learn something about a location for the next time. The weather, a different time of day or even time of year can make a big difference. I always hope for beautiful cloud patterns but Mother Nature can please … and she can disappoint! Finding a great location or subject, then being there at the right time are just as important as knowing how to use your equipment. The following images come from several different outings in the last month. All but two were shot along country roads quite close to home.

‘Broken Barn’ © Denise Bush

‘Rusty’ © Denise Bush

‘Shack With Old Car’ © Denise Bush

‘Wagon in Winter’ © Denise Bush

‘Buried’ © Denise Bush

‘Barn & Hay Rake’ © Denise Bush

‘Little Shack in Winter’ © Denise Bush
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Rural Scenery

I have always been drawn to rural scenes and taking rides in the country (with my camera of course) is a favorite pastime. Perhaps I was a farmer in a previous life! Give me a country road and I’m happy … put a barn or shack on it and I’m even happier … and a mountain back-drop or setting moon … ecstatic! Here are few rural scenes I enjoyed shooting recently. In processing them I took care of some haze that was present on this particular morning caused from the wildfires all the way in California! Not too far from home, I am looking forward to shooting at these locations again.

'Hay Rake in Morning Sun' © Denise Bush
‘Hay Rake in Morning Sun’ © Denise Bush
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'Mountain Barn' © Denise Bush
‘Mountain Barn’ © Denise Bush

'Summer Cloud Over Barn' © Denise Bush
‘Summer Cloud Over Barn’ © Denise Bush

'Moon Over Tiny House' © Denise Bush
‘Moon Over Tiny House’ © Denise Bush
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Country Roads

One of my favorite pastimes is exploring country roads in search of subjects to feed my hungry camera! I am always curious to see what’s around the next corner and have logged many miles doing so. Here are a few images I collected while meandering country roads in January. With a similar color palette they just seem to make a nice set and worthy of a post.

Sunflowers In Snow © Denise Bush
‘Sunflowers In Snow’ © Denise Bush
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'Little Shack In The Snow' © Denise Bush
‘Little Shack In The Snow’ © Denise Bush

'Conoco In The Snow' © Denise Bush
‘Conoco In The Snow’ © Denise Bush
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'Along The Way' © Denise Bush
‘Along The Way’ © Denise Bush

Abstract Expressionism … at a Crossroads

While traveling south on a photo adventure last week my friend and I stopped to photograph some rather unique abandoned buildings. Situated at a busy crossroads in a rural setting, they more than stood out with their bold, abstract expressionistic designs. Odd and fascinating they provided a fun subject as I set out to photograph the artwork in such a way to repurpose it, and make it my own.

Pollock Inspired
‘Pollock Inspired’ © Denise Bush

Swirling Siding
‘Swirling Siding’ © Denise Bush

Picasso Inspired
‘Picasso Inspired’ © Denise Bush

Painted Pattern
‘Painted Pattern’ © Denise Bush

Abandoned Abstract
‘Abandoned Abstract’ © Denise Bush

The Yellow Door
‘The Yellow Door’ © Denise Bush