Hardly anything draws me closer to the presence of God than a walk through the woods or visiting botanical gardens. I am drawn to the beauty of the colors and the play of light I see all around me. I am happy sitting in a bed of flowers and taking photos from all angles, or walking through a garden of camellias or hydrangeas or whatever is in bloom, capturing the beauty and uniqueness of the blossoms. I see myself as a minimalist and colorist, highlighting a single bloom and keeping the background uncomplicated, often with hints of similar or complimentary colors that echo the bloom.
I have delighted in color for as long as I can remember. My favorite toys as a child were my box of crayons and my coloring book! It always bewildered me why the crayons in the new boxes were never in order! Who packaged them anyway! The first thing I would do with a new box of crayons was dump them out and arrange them in color groups like a rainbow. When I was given my first box of 64 crayons I was ecstatic! I dumped them all out and arranged them by hues. That made sense to me rather than the haphazard order in which they arrived. As I grew, my parents kept me in art supplies for birthdays and Christmases. I took a few art classes, but mostly I learned on my own from the art books that often accompanied the art supplies. I took art in high school and college, settling in with oils as my favorite medium.
After I was married, I took a photography class with my husband and we quickly became amateur photographers. We bought a Nikkormat SLR, a Mamiya c330, many lenses, lots of equipment and were given the amazing Time Life Photography series. Then we set up a home darkroom with a Besseler 23c enlarger and spent many satisfying hours developing black and white photos–dodging, burning, cropping, and always making sure people’s eyes in the prints were sharply focused.
Four children “interrupted” my art hobbies for awhile. Then I began to have problems with my eyes. I was visually handicapped for 14 years. After four eye surgeries my vision was healed, thanks to the Lord, who led me to a skillful retinal specialist who was willing to do the surgery I needed to restore my vision. My husband and I went to Westmoreland State Park in Virginia when my eyes had healed from the last surgery. As I walked through the woods, I wept. I could see clearly for the first time in 14 years. What a blessing! How thankful I am for my vision!
After my vision was restored I went back to my art. I pursued colored pencils, watercolor (rather unsuccessfully), and also returned to oils. Like with my crayons, I often had more fun arranging my colored pencils and paints and creating charts and color wheels than actually painting pictures! I have learned from the books and websites of many talented artists. I knew I needed to have my own photos to work from, so I bought a good little Canon point-and-shoot (Canon ELPH 310) that had decent macro capabilities. I wanted to take photos of flowers and people to paint. BUT, I got hooked on photography instead! It would take me weeks to do a colored pencil or oil painting. But with the camera, I enjoyed instant gratification, and with a little tweaking on Picasa, a lot of satisfaction with the results. I took to books again—studying flower photography and macro photography. There were several photographers whose work inspired me (see list). It did not take me long to purchase a better camera (Canon Rebel T3i), a Canon 100mm macro lens, and Photoshop Elements software.
I love my hobby, but there is much more to my life. I am a retired high school math teacher, and pastor a church with my husband. I have four grown children and ten amazing and very well-loved grandchildren. My life is full, my heart is happy!
Which leads me to the present and this website. I hope you enjoy exploring my photos as much as I have enjoyed the journey that put them here!