In 2013 I retired from my marketing job to refocus on my local community. Altamont, New York is a small village in a beautiful agricultural region facing increasing development pressure. In upstate NY, we've come to expect rural decline and suburban sprawl, so I was thrilled to discover a village with a strong sense of place, with people working hard to maintain it. Living here, I've met farmers around Altamont whose land dates back to the American revolution. I've come to believe that supporting local farmers will strengthen our local communities, protect our landscape, and build the local economy. This site is my way to bring people and ideas together.
Farm Share Studio was initially created as a focus for my paintings, which celebrate local food and the farmers who grow it. When I wasn't staring at gnarly carrots or fresh green peas, I started noticing the "Coming Soon" signs featuring bloated McMansions sprouting on fields that had been tilled since the 18th century. The "great recession" had given us a development reprieve but it was clear that the pressure was on.
Having seen the effects of unbridled development in other regions, I know that this is a clock that you can't unwind. I also know that small farmers are under tremendous pressure. This project is an ongoing attempt on my part to research ways to expand the local food economy to support local farmers, to find like-minded people, and support solutions as I find them.
In 2016 I published a memoir with local farmer, Everett Rau, about his life in farming. Everett is now 97 years old and remembers his family farming with horses when he was a boy. The book is a story of his personal triumph over adversity, but all also a vision of a farming life that focuses on family, community, and a commitment to health and the environment.
Paintings, prints, and cards
Farm Share Studio features paintings, prints, cards and other products that document locally grown produce and landscapes. Canvas prints are available locally at Gallery 5one in Clifton Country Mall. Cards and/or books are available at the following locations:
The Albany Institute of History and Art Gift Shop
The Altamont Public Library
Arlene's Artist Supplies on Fuller Road in Colonie
The Book House in Stuyvesant Plaza
Indian Ladder Farms, Guilderland, NY
The Open Door Bookstore in Schenectady, NY
The Schoharie Farms Carrot Barn
Cards, prints, and paintings are available on my Etsy site: farmsharestudio.
Stand Tall is available through Amazon.
10% of proceeds are donated to organizations that support agricultural land preservation, such as the American Farmland Trust, the Mohawk Hudson Land Conervancy, and the Agricultural Stewardship Association.
© Laura Shore 2013 - 2016. All rights reserved. Farm Share Studio, all text and images are the property of Laura Shore and may not be reproduced without express written permission of the author. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.