How does Photography + Missouri Wine = Solar Panels?

Recently, Ron Berg shared with us the story of how being inquisitive and asking the right questions can lead to unexpected surprises.  On a recent shoot for a Missouri wine, Ron learned that photography + wine really can add up to solar panels.

Here is what he had to say about the project:

Yes, Missouri does have wine. It’s an oxymoron for sure. But, it IS the Missouri grape that saved the French crop in 1872. Look it up.

So I digress…

I’m a very inquisitive kind of person, almost with a kindergarteners enthusiasm. I love to learn about people, their professions, and where they grew up. That’s one of the great things about photographing people and getting to the root of what makes them tick.  I am always intrigued by how is it that their life lead them down the path to where they are today.  Whether I’m in a factory or in a vineyard I am enthralled by this and therefore always try to get to know the people I am photographing in a more personal way.

So it is not surprising that on a shoot in a vineyard with a wine maker, I start asking questions.  The setting is a Fahrmeier Family Vineyards, a Missouri Vineyard where I making photos for their wine label near my boyhood home. As we chat, we remind each other of relationships from our past.  I of course start asking questions and wonder aloud how and why a working farm turned vineyard decides to fill the roof of their barn with solar power.

Brandon Fahrmeier explains to me that “it is free in more ways than one.”  Of course I want to know more.

Brandon says, “As we know the sun’s power is free and so are solar panels.”

My reaction is WHAT?! …with confusion. How in the world could he get all those solar panels for free?  Brandon explains further that there are   Federal Grants for Solar Power to satisfy Federal guideline quotas annually.  That is all he needed to say and I was sold.

Needless to say, we are now proud Missouri wine consumers with our photo handiwork on the bottles, and solar energy gatherers with our 42 new solar panels.  All because I kept the conversation going.

The Power of Being Inquisitive never ceases to amaze me!”

To see more of Ron Berg’s work, please link here.

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