Once upon a time I played a game with my sister Cary. We went into an antique store and split up. She chose an item and I chose an item, each without the knowledge of what the other one was choosing. We met an hour later at the cash register and I purchased both items. The point: I had to create a still-life photo using the two items we had chosen. The reason: Totally for fun and creativity. The outcome: I had so much fun at home coming up with the photo. Cary had chosen a figure made out of sand and I had chosen a pincushion of Chinese Sumo Wrestlers.
I call this photo, “The Sandman Guards the Entrance to the Ancient Temple of Kibble.”
An 8.5” x 11” print is on its way to my sister via the postal service. I know for a fact she will smile big when she sees the print.
Yes, the background is actually Kibble. My cat River did eat some of the background during this project. The End.
Once upon a time in 2019 I started taking pictures of snowflakes. Every Winter I learn a bit more. This Winter of 2022-2023 hasn’t been the greatest for snowflake photography, but the images I did happen to capture were beautiful indeed. I am not sure why this snowflake has a pinkish tint to it - but I do know that numerous snowflakes I shot on that same day had that same tint. Perhaps a little love was in the air that day. The End.
Once upon a time my cat River made a friend with a baby squirrel. This baby squirrel hung out near my deck with River and I for more than an hour. When this up close meeting took place I was a little nervous about what would transpire between the two of them. The squirrel pretty much just wanted to play and he did jump up playfully at River a couple times. River stayed calm and inquisitive and thankfully didn’t try to have the squirrel for supper. The End.
Swans, Loons, Eagles. They among other animals can suffer from lead poisoning from fishing tackle and lead shot from hunting bullets. It’s easy to ignore when you don’t see the devastating effects. But if you stand on the shore and watch an animal slowly and painfully die over time, it is hard to ignore.
Once upon a time it snowed on New Years Eve. The area I live in was predicted to get a possible light dusting of snow. Well it turns out it snowed for about four hours. When hour two hit the snow turned into the most beautiful snowflakes. I was prepared and all bundled up in many layers, heated socks, big furry hat and heat packets shoved in my gloves. I took many photos and will share my favorites on the Snow Crystals page of this website. The End.
Once upon a time Winter came back and I was ready with my camera whenever it snowed. Anything that helps me enjoy Winter is a good thing! I am constantly enamored with the unbelievable beauty that I see through my lens when looking at these amazing little snow crystals. The End.
Once upon a time I spent all day playing with flowers and bubbles and water droplets. I used flowers from my deck garden and some flowers I had collected up north a few weeks ago. The dark brown flower is a Ghost Pipe fungi flower that has gone to seed for the season. I can’t remember the name of the red flower but it’s one of my new favorites because it attracts hummingbirds. I got totally lost in the creative process today and the hours just flew by. I love it when that happens! The End.
Once upon a time I grew flowers in pots and collected flowers from nearby locations so I could practice taking photos with arrangements on my lightbox. Here are a few results from my photo sessions. Each final photo is a combination of multiple combined images of different exposures. I tend to lean toward the lighter more airy, perhaps overexposed versions of the final photos. I love the whiteness of the background and the transparency of the flower petals. The End.
Once upon a time I was walking at my favorite local park when suddenly I heard some very subtle snoring. Looking left, looking right, then looking down at the lake I spotted the cutest little muskrats taking a mid-afternoon nap in the sunshine. I watched them for a while, finished my walk, then went home and took a nap myself. The End.
Once upon a time there was a bird called a Green Heron. He was late for his daily rounds at the lake and didn’t have time to shower so he just quickly brushed his beak and threw a bunch of feather gel in and took off. He ended up looking pretty cool and the rest of the birds were jealous of his good looks. But then later in the day he realized he had been flying around all day with his zipper down. How embarrassing. The End.
Once upon a time I wanted a table top light box for creative photography so I decided to to make my own. I don’t have great woodworking tools so I used foam core board instead because I do have sharp knives. Add in Gaffer’s Tape, rope lights, a bit of math, and I was in business! It is lightweight, sturdy, has great light and should last for many years. My light box size is about 24” x 18” in size. Here are the photos I took as I went about the project. Feel free to email me if you have any questions. The End.
Once upon a time I decided to learn how to take photographs of snowflakes. I researched equipment and purchased a new ultra-macro lens (Laowa 25mm), read books by people that were really good at this type of photography (Don Komarechka), and waited for it to snow. I became obsessed with looking at the forecast so I could plan to be home when it snowed. I learned a lot this first winter and am so in love with this type of photography. Winter is over and I am already looking forward to next winter. You can find my favorite snow crystals on the Snow Crystal Studio page of this website. The End.
Once upon a time I found a dead swan in the woods and that very day a journey started learning about lead poisoning and wildlife. Lead ‘fishing sinkers’ and ‘lead shot’ poison many innocent animals in our wild every year. 20 swans in the last 2 years have died in the Winter from lead poisoning at a local creek near my home. Here are two photos I took this Winter of what lead poisoning looks like. What it looks like is sadness. The End. Literally.
Once upon a time a virus hit the world and I found extra time on my hands to learn new things. Enter: the world of Macro Photography. I spent the summer photographing Hummingbirds - which are small but I wanted to go smaller. Much smaller. So I have been learning all about taking photos of tiny things such as droplets and snowflakes. It is fascinating and interesting and I plan to keep learning more about it for years to come. The above two photos are in a category called Water Droplet Refraction photography. If you are interested in photographing small things, I recommend the book by Don Komarechka: The Universe At Our Feet. The creative possibilities are truly endless.
Once upon a time I ventured up to the North Shore of Lake Superior during a Polar Vortex. It was very cold: -25 degrees below zero with a -45 degree windchill. It was the most cold I have ever experienced and also the most beautiful I have ever seen Lake Superior. Over the course of two days I took many photographs. The real life experience of being outside in this type of cold was exhilarating and so much fun! It made me feel very alive. The End.
Once upon a time I woke up on the first day of the New Year. Happy New Year I told myself, what would you like to do today to celebrate the new year? Go find and photograph eagles was my answer. So I bundled up and grabbed my camera and went on an all day search for our majestic American Eagle. One of my favorite spots along the Mississippi River brought me joy as I found two beautiful eagles enjoying the area. This ended up being a-very-good-day. The End.
Once upon a time after 31 years as a teacher of young children I needed a change and moved to a company that specializes in amazing displays. My sister has worked there for 25 years and has collected some of my photos to hang on the walls of the company in various places. I find it humorous that some of my photos arrived at the company about 10 years before I did.
I suppose it was some form of foreshadowing. It was only a matter of time before I followed my photos. So jump ahead to 2020 and my company loved one of my images so much that they purchased one from me to display front and center on the walls of our conference room. This was extra special to me because this is the room clients visit when we are discussing new business. I am humbled and honored.
Once upon a time about ten years ago I decided to start photographing local Trumpeter Swans. It is so fun and it gets me outside on the coldest of days. For some reason I like taking photos of wildlife in the winter even more than the summertime. I think it’s because there are fewer people out and about in the winter. I like it when it’s just me and the wildlife. There is nothing like being with the swans when 50 or more of them are playing and “trumpeting” - it’s so noisy but in a peaceful way! I have been known to stay outside in sub-zero temps for hours photographing them (usually until my camera batteries go caput). Here is one of my favorite swan photos. I have this as a 30” x 30” canvas wrap on my wall at home. It always succeeds in making me smile. :). The End.
Once upon a time I was up north at a resort on Lake Superior. A beautiful sunset was arriving so my sister and I went outside to enjoy the view. Right at the most beautiful moment of colorful sky, a woman walked out to the rocky point in front of us. Soon thereafter a man who was a bit unsteady on the rocks joined her. It was the sweetest moment when the woman reached her hand out to help the man reach the rock she was standing on. The couple in this image make the photo perfect to me. The End.
Once upon a time I had a few very favorite quotes. My first favorite quote is, “Hang around people smarter and stronger than you are and they will drag you right up with them.” My second favorite quote is, “Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.” My third favorite quote is the one in the pic above. The End.