Ben Marcin's photography deals with architecture, structure, and most importantly shelter. Ben's project Out West studies prairie houses made during the Civil War. During the rise of the railroads expanding across the country, there was a creation of a farming boom. However, this development was swiftly ended by the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, which was a combination of record droughts and poor farming techniques. The houses photographed are remnants of that time period. While taking pictures of these prairie houses, Ben creates and studies the typology of architecture found in these houses. It allows us to compare and contrast the "not only the built environment, but the lifestyle and landscape that surrounds our domestic environment." Here are some of Ben's words on his project Out West: "The houses of Out West were built by people determined to seek a destiny in almost complete isolation. While the prairie houses and their surrounding environment are remarkably austere, there is also present an almost otherworldly serenity that must have given hope to a landowner now long gone."