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Tuesday, June 24, 2014

She Got a Hair CUT! (chop?)

The K of MK Designs is my ((gulp)) recently-turned-nine-year-old daughter. She's been fighting my desire for her to keep long hair ever since her donation to Locks of Love a few years ago. Now, she's won. It is super short. I hate it. She loves it. EVERY person seems to love it. I realized why I dislike it so much. It makes her look so much older. ((sigh))

There she is to the left, barefoot and her lovely long locks...

A bit of a mess, but I loved all those little fly away hair moments...

Playing around at an apple orchard in the fall a few years ago...

Here she is - 8 years old - this past fall on a hike with me and her hair is getting long again...
...but this is her after the moment in May she declared "It is MY hair" and went super short...
how can a hair cut make her look so much older? This momma is
amazed at her beautiful girl, and a bit sad to see her approaching
the double digits... but proud of the young woman she is becoming.

These are my photos and words, do not copy without permission. For details about my work, keep reading my blog or check out my website at

June 2014

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Learning How to See

As many of my "fans" may know, I am a teacher. 

The majority of my day I teach Photography... and the big challenge is teaching students how to see, and really look at the world creatively.

This semester for my Photo II final exam, I decided to bring in an exercise in "creativity." I put items on a table, and gave my students about 30-45 min to create an image using at least one of the items in their photograph. The results were stunning. 

Remember, great photos are all around you! Sometimes it can be as simple as scraps of paper, small glass jars, feathers, aluminum foil, and more.

None of these images are mine, they are my students' - please do not copy or use without permission.

MK Designs - Summer 2014 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Photographs, Smiles, and Altered Schedules

Winter 2014 certainly threw me for a loop. Excessive ice, snow, and horrid road conditions led to nearly 13 snow days (I honestly lost track). Since my main "job" (let's be honest - career) is in teaching, this tossed my whole spring and kick off to summer for a loop. 

Right now, I am still not done with the current school year! Normally, I am headed back from Vacation #1 and processing images from it at this time... but this year was/is totally different. 

However, in the Spring I was able to enjoy teaching Photography, Art, and Broadcast. My daughter turned 9 at the end of April... shortly before that I found myself in San Diego for a convention/contest with students. I was lucky that even though the Spring felt rushed, it did come... along with all the bluebells in bloom that make me smile so much! 

“Is the spring coming?" he said. "What is it like?"...
"It is the sun shining on the rain and the rain falling on the sunshine...” 
 ~ The Secret Garden

Even though my school year was extended a bit... I was able to squeeze in a quick "mini-vacation" with my daughter to Meramec State Park in Missouri (( ))

We went the first weekend Fisher Cave was opened and before the CRAZY busy camping months of the summer start there (MSP is known for being pretty busy on the weekends during the summer). It was fun to hike trails, and see the cave, and get our first camping trip in. Note: before then we went on a day trip to hike and take photos there with my mom, too! 

“She turned to the sunlight
    And shook her yellow head,
And whispered to her neighbor:
    "Winter is dead.” 
As an educator (wrapping up my 18th year), spring also means major changes. People retire or get new jobs, kids graduate or move, things just... change. However, it's a sweet time to reflect upon the year and be happy for all the new opportunities people have before them. Even though it makes me weepy saying "Goodbye" I have come to learn that often it is more like "See you later."

So we have road trips, adventures, changes in life, and lots of hikes to take... and all that time... I carry a camera of some sort because PHOTOGRAPHS document and record those moments we (or me!) do not want to forget. 

Speaking of photographs, even though many kids at school said goodbye to me this year, some said hello. My underclassmen coming back to my broadcast class gave me this framed photo. Love it!

by MK Designs Photography / Fine Art and Portrait. DO NOT COPY / USE WITHOUT PERMISSION. See my website at

June 3, 2014.