Photographs taken around my neighborhood-Lino Lakes, MN
For this self portrait I was sitting in the dark, using my cell phone as my lighting source to cast the shadow of the lace drapes on my skin.
A window washer cleans the windows of the Gutherie Theater in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Minneapolis Mayor, R.T. Rybak
Never look down on someone unless you're helping them up.
Photographed at the Minnesota State Capitol
Broken Shower Mirror
A man reels in as a 200lbs+ lemon head shark fights at the other end of his line.
A mother and child leave a fundraiser lunch for President Obama at the Bachelor Farmer in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Bon Secour, Alabama
Indian Shores, Florida
The sun rises over Lake Superior in Duluth, Minnesota.
The waves crash on the shores of Lake Superior in Tofte, Minnesota.
Sunset in Gulf Shores, Alabama
Going, going, gone!
I try to take my camera with me where ever I go. You just never know when you are going to cross paths with a run away horse! This horse was such a stinker. He jumped the fence and ran around for hours dodging his owners. They eventually caught him, but not before he had his fun.
A ship named the "Polsteam" heads to shore in Duluth, Minnesota.
After a heavy snow I decided to walk through the woods at the nature center in Roseville. It was so peaceful, quiet, and beautiful. As I continued walking I came across a woman standing in an open area, staring up at the gorgeous snow covered trees as though it was a dream. I snapped this photo. We then introduced ourselves and sat down on that snow covered bench and chatted until the sun went down. It was a perfect Winter evening in Minnesota.
The night sky is lit up by industrial pollution along the Mississippi River in South St. Paul
The Mississippi River water level rises turning this park into part of the river
My grandma has always been an inspiration to me. Growing up she encouraged me to express my creativity. She was the reason I became interested in art at an early age. At 83 years old, she is still the light of my life and I look forward to seeing her every week. One of my favorite places is sitting with her at her kitchen table. The conversations we have are like the wine in our glasses: bold, sweet, and a little too much.
Grandma was an excellent painter. She painted still lifes and portraits of people. She used oil based paint on canvas with a pallet knife for her still life paintings and different size brushes for her portraits. Artistic talents runs in her family. Both her dad and brother were accomplished painters. Grandma has not painted in over thirty years.
Growing up at her house, her paintings hung on the walls of almost every room. She had “National Geographic” magazines all over her house from decades of being a loyal subscriber. I remember sitting on the floor looking through all of the photographs of the amazing places from around the world.
A few years ago she was diagnosed with dementia. Since her diagnoses, I have noticed her become increasingly forgetful and confused. Watching her memory slowly fade away has encouraged me to ask more questions and document what she still remembers.
For this project I explored my grandma’s house, capturing photographs of her, her paintings, and the tools she used to create her work. I found some of the same items in her house that she used to set up her still life paintings. I recreated them by photographing the same objects in the same arrangement as she painted them fifty years ago. It wasn’t until I decided to do a school photography project on my grandma that I found out that many of her paintings I grew up admiring were portraits of people from “National Geographic” magazine. It became my quest to find the original images of the people in her paintings.
I traveled to numerous used bookstores in search of “National Geographic” magazines from the 1950s through the 1970s. I spent weekends flipping through magazines. One day I flipped the page and to my amazement there was the tribal girl from Grandma’s painting. It felt like I won the lottery; I was overwhelmed with excitement. Grandma was just as happy. I continued my search at the library. I checked out dozens of magazines. I was disappointed to find many pages torn out or missing. Unfortunately, I have not found more of the photographs she painted. The search continues. This project was displayed at the University of Minnesota Bachelor of Arts Senior Show in May 2012. It was hung in the Regis Center for Art. I invited my grandma to attend the event. I was anxious to see her reaction to this series. Walking towards the building I heard her ask, “What are we here to see?” As she approached the familiar images, her jaw dropped and she covered her mouth. She said, “This is wonderful.” Grandma asked when I did all of this. I reminded her I worked on this at her house for the past several months. Soon after we arrived people started recognizing her from my photos. She was thrilled to be acknowledged. The only people who have ever seen her paintings before were our family and her friends when she invited to dinner parties. She was standing in front of the display at one point, engaged in conversations about the project with a group of people. Conversing with all these people brought out so much emotion and joy. Seeing her transition from confusion to bliss was heartening. I will always treasure that moment. On the car ride home from the showing, she told me she wants to start painting again.