Capturing Ranch Life with Photographer Della Frederickson

Since she took the leap out west in 2017, western photographer and wrangler Della Frederickson has spent more time in the saddle than not, often with her camera in hand. But as you’ll hear in this conversation, she’s not just a passive observer when she’s out on these ranches: she’s out there driving cattle, getting muddy on branding day, and pitching in however she can – all while capturing the hardworking people and the moments that have become central to her work and her life.

After graduating from Auburn University with a degree in Digital Marketing, this South Florida girl booked it to Wyoming, where she applied her horsewomenship skills as a wrangler at a guest ranch in the heart of Grand Teton National Park for several years, solidifying her love of ranch life and the landscapes of the American West. 

Della’s photography has been featured on the inside cover of Modern Huntsman and the cover of Jackson Hole Area Magazine, and soon to be featured in our Fall issue of On Land Magazine, so be sure to check it out! Her growing client list includes Stetson, Vermont Gloves, and more.  We hope you enjoy this conversation with Della Frederickson.


Topics Discussed

2:10 – Della describes the setting of the conversation

2:40 – Della shares her upbringing in Florida and her journey west

3:37 – Working as a wrangler in Grand Teton National Park

4:05 – Amber shares her introduction to the west

4:30 – “So you only have one kidney?” Della’s horse accident as a child

5:25 – Passion for horses

6:37 – Photographing ranch work and getting started in western photography

7:10 – Winning a photo contest (almost)

7:35 – Giant saddlebags full of camera gear

8:30 – Jumping 100% into freelance photography

9:30 – Growing beyond imposter syndrome

10:21 – Della’s advice for a woman who wants to turn a hobby into something more

11:35 – Amber asks, “What gives you hope?”

12:30 – Putting down the camera to help with ranch work

12:58 – “Is freelancing scary for you?” How Della balances work and play

Links from this episode

Della’s Website:

Connect with Della on Instagram:

Triangle X Ranch:

Subscribe to On Land Magazine!

Thank you to Molly Manthei, whose art is featured in the opening of the video. Check her out on Instagram!

On Land is a production of Western Landowners Alliance, a non-profit that advances policies and practices that sustain working lands, connected landscapes and native species. Learn more about WLA’s Women in Ranching program here.

Hosted by Amber Smith

Produced by Zach Altman

Theme music by Jason Shaw

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Amber Smith has been living and working in rural America since 2004, beginning at The Home Ranch in Colorado, where she worked as a wrangler. She and her husband are currently raising their two children and working to steward a 53,000-acre ranch in Cohagen, Montana. She is the director of the Women in Ranching program of the Western Landowners Alliance.