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Photo and text by Art Rogers.

Francis and Eunice Collings were sheep farmers in the rural community of Two Rock outside Petaluma, Calif., about an hour-and-a-half north of San Francisco. For two years in a row in the 1970s, Francis won the Guiness World Record for growing the largest pumpkin! This one weighed out at 354 pounds. He said he saved his seeds from the largest pumpkins; then, he left only one pumpkin on the vine and gave it a lot of water. He pointed to his sheep (grazing on pumpkins no less), raised his eyebrows and laughingly explained how he had no shortage of sheep manure for fertilizer. Since then, people have figured out how to grow pumpkins that weigh over 900 pounds, but in his day, no one could touch Francis Collings giant pumpkins.

“Pumpkin People” is from a series of photographs documenting the generations that built Californias San Francisco North Bay rural communities. I use my art to document and help preserve the farms and ranches that are disappearing in that region.

Art Rogers has been making portraits for over 35 years. He has received fellowships from the Guggenheim, National Endowment for the Arts and The Marin Arts Council. His work is in major museum collections. His studio is in Point Reyes Station, Calif. For more information about prints and private commissions, he can be reached at 415-663-8345, or check out <>.

Fall 2002 Contents | Git Home!

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