Current Progressive Dairy digital edition

Marji Guyler-Alaniz: Featured farm photographer

Published on 24 May 2018
Marji Guyler-Alaniz

In addition to photography, the FarmHer organization includes branded apparel, podcasts and a series aired on RFD-TV.

How did you get started in photography?



GUYLER-ALANIZ: I started shooting on a little 110 film camera back when I was probably about 8 or 9 years old. Ever since then, I have loved to take pictures. I did some photography projects in 4-H, and then a photography art class when I was a senior in high school really cemented my passion for photography. From there, I went on to Grand View University and obtained a minor in photography.

What is your favorite type of photo to shoot?

Inga Witscher of Osseo, Wisconsin, sorts cows GUYLER-ALANIZ: Documentary style is my favorite. I love to show people in their natural element, unposed. It’s real, and when I can capture a moment in time that is real, it amazes me.

Describe your most memorable photo shoot.

GUYLER-ALANIZ: My very first FarmHer photo shoot was April 17, 2013. I went to a farm in western Iowa on a cold, blustery and rainy spring day. I followed that woman through her work and was in awe. I couldn’t wait to get back to my computer to download the pictures to see what they looked like.


Denise O'Brien of rural Alantic, Iowa

When I did, I was amazed. They looked better than I could have hoped. Starting that day, I was hooked on taking pictures of women on farms.

Why do you enjoy farm-related photography?

GUYLER-ALANIZ: There is just something amazing about watching a person go through very real, raw work. Work they clearly love. The ability to show these women in a different light, and to show others how strong and amazing they are, is really what inspires me.

Lois Reichert of Knoxbille, Iowa milking one of her goats

What are one or two tips you would give to an amateur photographer who wants to take a great picture of people or animals?


GUYLER-ALANIZ: Be prepared with your equipment. I shoot documentary style, so there is no light setup. You have to work with the light you have around you. Oftentimes, we are in barns or buildings without much daylight, and I have to have a few lens options that have a low F-stop, which allows me to get the shots.

That and a camera that can shoot with good quality at a high ISO is key.  end mark

PHOTO 1: Marji Guyler-Alaniz

PHOTO 2: Denise O’Brien of rural Atlantic, Iowa, was the first woman Guyler-Alaniz photographed for FarmHer. “This is one of my favorite pictures from that shoot,” she recounts. “The bright blue of her coat, with the green grass and the foggy landscape, just pulls me in.”

PHOTO 3: Inga Witscher of Osseo, Wisconsin, sorts cows and moves one out of the barn as she prepares for the evening milking.

PHOTO 4: Lois Reichert of Knoxville, Iowa, talks to a friend while milking one of her goats on her microdairy. Photos by Marji Guyler-Alaniz.

Marji Guyler-Alaniz is from Urbandale, Iowa. You can find her on facebook

See more photos and watch the RFD-TV series at Farm Her.