Down on the Farm – Two kinds of pretty chicks June 21, 2013

Some of you may remember that my farm was going to be the site of a “Down on the Farm” photo shoot by the Hot Tomato Pinup Academy.  Today I thought I’d share some of those photos with you, and give you a behind the scenes look.

Getting the chickens to “pose” with the girls for some of the “Down on the Farm” shots was my job.

Me with the chickens.

“Down on the Farm” photo courtesy of Hot Tomato Pinup Academy

The job consisted chiefly of hiding out behind the barn and tossing out a few treats to keep the hens occupied behind the models. But there were plenty of other things going on.

First, my porch was turned into an outdoor closet:


This was once a porch swing


Then the barn was outfitted for some “Down on the Farm” shots:


Real barn wood makes a lovely backdrop


Meanwhile, the Hot Tomatoes relaxed with some “Down on the Farm” frozen mixed drinks. I premade strawberry daiquiris, piña coladas, peach smashes and margaritas, then froze them in jam jars. The alcohol meant they didn’t freeze solid—they just froze to a slushy state, perfect for the hot, sunny day. It also meant we could have some fun, delicious drinks without my having to spend a lot of time in the kitchen with the blender. Highly recommended for summer parties!

Wash tubs and jam jars make a great "Down on the Farm" presentation

The frozen drinks could be topped with little umbrellas, too.


I presented these “Down on the Farm” drinks in a set of old wash tubs: on one side, the frozen drinks, and on the other our home brewed beer (in this case, we shared a nice barleywine.) I was really pleased with how the mixed drinks turned out (except for the peach, which I thought was too strong), so I’ll share the three best recipes with you here:

For the piña coladas, I used one can of sliced pineapple, one can of Coco Lopez, and then I filled the Coco Lopez can with gold rum and added that to the blender, too. Top with enough ice to mostly fill eight jelly jars (about 8 cups) and blend. Pour into the jars; freeze with the lids off, and add lids once frozen.

For strawberry daiquiris, I used one can of frozen lemonade concentrate, one bag of frozen strawberries (or you may use fresh, of course!), and filled the lemonade can with rum. Top the blender with ice, enough to make about 8 cups, and follow the same procedure as with the pina coladas.

For margaritas, use one can of frozen limeade, and fill that 2/3 full of tequila, 1/3 full of orange liqueur, then top with ice enough to make 6 cups. Be sure to experiment a little with this recipe, because you might be surprised to find that you prefer a different orange liqueur than usual. Or not. I tend to like margaritas a little tarter than most people, so I used a less sweet liqueur since the limeade can be quite sweet.

Voila! Mix up a batch or two, put them in your freezer… and then thank me later! (Seriously, please let me know in the comments if you tried this recipe, and how it worked out for you—I’d love to hear!)


I can’t decide if my favorite was the strawberry or the pina colada.


We also had some nice edibles made with farm fresh eggs, including—of course!—deviled eggs, but also zucchini alla napoli. (For that recipe, you’ll want to make plans to buy My Pet Chicken’s upcoming book, tentatively set to be released in January.)

It was a hen party—with real hens. The hens hovered around the porch, in hopes that someone would offer some treats… but really, the occasional article of clothing was the only thing that fell. The treats were out behind the barn for any hens who cared to pose with the Hot Tomatoes for the camera.


Miss Flora the Speckled Sussex eyes a fallen dress. Maybe she likes the polka dots, but I think her own natural polka dots are awfully cute.


While one model was getting the full “Hot Tomato” treatment from the crew, others might enjoy the porch,  pleased that their shoot was finished and had gone well.


The sunflowers in the foreground were a gift from my friend Paula <3


Even waiting for “your turn” was pretty fun. I suppose it would be awfully hard to be in a bad mood when you’re being pampered at a sort of makeshift outdoor salon, having makeup and hair done, and being dressed up. Getting to pick out cute “Down on the Farm” costumes for the shoot was fun, too. There was gingham and denim…


Waiting has never been so sexy.


There were cute hats…

Down on the Farm, you need a good hat!

A good hat is definitely needed on the farm


… and also the occasional corset.


Corsets are not generally required for farm work…


It must be admitted that, so far as I know, it’s pretty uncommon to wear a corset while performing farm chores. But these are glamour/pinup shots, not documentary photos of farm work, right? And even the hens seemed interested in trying to get into costume, at times.


Bunny the Brahma was mad she couldn’t explore the contents of the chest.


But seriously… look how awesome the results are:


Photo of Inga (and flock!) courtesy of Hot Tomato Pinup Academy.


Isn’t that a gorgeous photo? And there you can see some of my chickens—also enjoying snacks at the party—as well as the lovely basket of eggs I had gathered that morning. It’s no wonder that it’s not unusual for clients to drive for hours, and from neighboring states, for the opportunity to be photographed by the Hot Tomato crew. With my chickens in some of the shots, I feel as if I now have some particularly fabulous family photos.

The day wore on into a lovely evening, and although the pinup photos stopped with the sunset, the fun didn’t.


A down on the farm sunset


And in the end, they got some amazing photos of chicks–and not just the Hot Tomato kind, either.


“Down on the Farm” photo courtesy of Hot Tomato Pinup Academy. I love the way the hen is glancing over her shoulder at the rooster!

Have you ever thrown a farm or backyard pet chicken themed party? Did you do anything special to emphasize the theme? Have you ever had your photo taken with your chickens? Please share in the comments!


Andi Roberts June 21st, 2013

We had soooo much fun on the farm! The drinks in the jars were amazing! As was all the delicious food! Thanks for your hospitality – we can’t wait to start planning the next farm shoot!

Lissa June 21st, 2013

It was great having you all! I’m looking forward to the next shoot, too. 🙂

Liz Chandler June 21st, 2013

These are so adorable and creative… These make me think that you may make a farm girl out of me yet! 🙂
Fun and beautiful work as always, and keep up the great work!

Jesse June 21st, 2013

Lissa, I can’t thank you enough for all the work you did to provide the absolute perfect set and the energy of your place is intoxicating. Wonderful to work with you and so great to have you as a friend!

Whitney Chamberlin June 21st, 2013

Such beautiful day at a beutiful farm, with beautiful birds, and beautiful hosts, and beautiful ladies, and beautiful snacks! It’s so lovely to spend a day with women who
are all about supporting and lifting each other up! Thanks so much , to all involved.

Whitney Chamberlin June 21st, 2013

Inga! You rocked that hat! And to our hostess with the mostess, thank you for sharing the blog and photos of the wonderful life you’ve made on that ridge of yours.

Rachy June 21st, 2013

What gorgeous photos, I love the last one!

Amber West June 21st, 2013

Please let me know when the next shoot is? THX

Rach June 21st, 2013

Where can i find that skirt?

PS Y’all look so nice and warm. i have tears to my eyes remembering what it was like to be hot.

Sandy June 26th, 2013

Amazing, A little gingham and denim, a pretty dress and all the lovely ladies enjoying their treats! Loved the picture shoot! Oh yes, the human ladies were lovely also! 🙂

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