Tools of The Trade

Jenn Zeller

Cowgirl. Artist. Photographer. Located in the grassy plains of South Dakota.

My work has been published/featured in Dirt Road Daughters magazine, and the 2011 Capture Dakota book. I've also been featured in articles in the Tri-State Livestock News, and Cattle Business Weekly. My Limited Edition Canvas, "Scatter Butte" was a finalist in the Ex Arte Equinus International Art Horse Competition in 2011 as well.

I do travel and would love to photograph your horses or your family. Contact me if you're interested!

I hope you enjoy looking through my prints. If you see something you like and you wish to have something special done with it please let me know. Most of the photographs on this site are offered for sale and can be purchased right here!

Best Regards-


The South Dakota Cowgirl

  • Mon, 18 Aug 2014 06:52:16 +0000

    A day in the life…

    I seriously live the best life.

    I get up and most days do whatever I want. Sometimes I do have writing assignments to make deadline, and sometimes there’s must-do ranch work. Like capture a bull from a one pasture and move him to another, or gather and sort horses, or gather bulls when their 60-days with the cows ends, but usually my day goes something like this: I get up, have coffee, breakfast, feed Medium Rare, the bottle calf (because our milk cow went on strike), feed the dogs, feed my barn cats (Rafter, and now Bob, because Kitty Perry has disappeared), and bring the saddle horses in. From there, I may ride colts, ride through the cows, go to barrel races, ride my horses through the barrels, go visit the mares, edit photos, catch up on my crime dramas, clean house, do laundry… The list is endless depending on the weather.

    And then there are days like Friday, where we had a “must-do” job. We needed to move a bull from the pasture with our first calf heifers, to the pasture with our cows.

    Burt (our hired-right-hand-man/cousin of the boys), and I loaded our horses, a couple panels and headed out to sort off one of our handsome Brangus bulls. We needed to load him into the trailer, and then haul him to a pasture with the cows.

    Loading him was pretty much a piece of cake, though it also involved cake: the cow kind! I swear that stuff is like crack for cows. Plus, all our bulls are gentle and will eat it out of your hand. So all we had to do was trail him about 200 feet into the makeshift corral by the trailer, jump in shake a bucket full of cake at him, throw him a piece or two and he was like, “Girls? What girls? There’s cake to be eaten boys!”

    After we got him loaded, we jumped our horses in the back of the trailer, put our panels back on the side, and headed to a river pasture to find the cows and dump him out.

    We needed to trail him down to the cows. Once there, my Friday morning view looked something like this:


    We rode through that pasture looking for anything out of place. Once I got to the top of the biggest hill on the ranch, I saw this:


    Someday, from a horse, I’ll take a photo of the scene from all angles. It’s a site to behold, trust me!

    I didn’t end up eating lunch until about 3 that day because once I covered 2/3 of the pasture from the top (Burt rode the river bottoms), I trotted Dino the four miles home while Burt covered the rest of the pasture and brought the trailer home. I was just unsaddling when he pulled in.

    It was a lovely day to be horseback, doing a job, albeit was a bit muggy and hot. I don’t know where this humidity has come from this summer, but there plenty of it! I feel like I’m back in Texas!

    And that, my friends, is just another day in my life.

    Happy trails!

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