Growing up among rows of purple haze carrots, delicate Mara des Bois strawberries and corn sweet enough to eat raw, Makoto Chino might have been one of the best-fed kids in America.
He would see celebrated chefs like Julia Child and Alice Waters visiting his family's Southern California farm and learning from his father Tom Chino about the painstaking attention to quality and experimentation.
The stages of corn growing are seen in this time-lapse recording.
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"The biggest issue was something I'd not even thought about: Spiders."
I’ve never really fancied spiders. After using hunting trail cameras on a story to try and record a time-lapse of the growth of food on a family farm, I have to say: I hate them.
The idea when shooting the story about Chino Farm in California was to have a few cameras pointing at sections of the farm. The small field cameras can be triggered by movement or programmed to take a picture every minute, or hour.
I covered the movement sensor and set the camera to record the growth of corn. I placed another one up high on a barn overlooking a section of the farm. It was a learning process at first, figuring out how to get the best possible quality out of small, and rather inexpensive, field cameras.
After checking them every few days to make sure they were working, I would return every month or two to download the SD cards' data, replace the batteries and clean away spiders from the small lens.
It became very apparent early on that battery power was not going to a big issue. With eight AA batteries in each camera, they were good for over two months.
One camera was drilled into the side of a power pole, the other clamped with a magic arm on the roof of a barn. I used a third camera to jump around different sections of the farm.
I placed it next to a cherry tree beginning its bloom, but the tree's foliage soon grew right into the camera and its ability to focus closer than 8 or 10 feet left me with my first fail.
The biggest issue, however, was something I’d not even thought about: Spiders spinning webs and, in some cases, building nests in front and on top of the lens. I lost a few good sections of growth because of this, and even rubbing pest spray around the area failed to keep them away.
Finally, after collecting thousands of images, I used Photo Mechanic to sequence the data from the jpeg, and I would slowly deleted frames that were over or underexposed - or blocked by a spider!