The Merry Widowmaker
Born in Western North Carolina, I spent a good deal of time outside. There wasn't much on the TV then. I shared my adventures with my twin sister, Johna. We both still love animals and the outdoors. Johna never got into photography and hated the piano lessons, but does paint quite well. I continued with the flute and piano joining the Marine Corps Band at the age of 18. Today my passions include nature photography, painting, and music. I had a lot of "lessons" as a child. I have continued my learning over the decades with classes and workshops. I mostly strive to create a sense of beauty, tranquility and mystery in my work. In 2010, Steve and I moved to western Colorado where my focus turned primarily to landscape and nature photography. I love to play the flute and piano, but feel my best inspiration comes from being out-of-doors hiking with Steve and camera. As well as being a vendor for multiple stores in the National Parks, I have been honored to have my work featured or published by the National Geographic Society, The National Park Foundation, The National and International Audubon Society, The National Park Service, and the Department of the Interior.
Steve and I have been together since 1986 when we were both stationed at El Toro Marine Base. 32 years later, we are still together, more balanced in marriage, work and our lives. Steve has spent the last 8 years covering the western US selling 911 systems in many counties and states. I travel with him when I can. Honestly, I could not get to all of my photographic locations without my Sherpa, Steve. Thankfully he likes to drive, navigate and sometimes carry gear while I kick my feet on the dash and read a book or edit photos on the fly as the landscapes whiz by the window.
I've been painting and drawing as long as I can remember. I got into photography over 20 years ago to photograph things I wanted to paint. Our move to Colorado gave me one beautiful landscape after another from which to photograph. I focused much of my time and energy learning the craft of photography. After almost 10 years of focus on photography, I have been returning to painting over the past two years.
"I'm a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.". Thomas Jefferson
Donna was voted best artist by the readers of the Grand Junction Sentinel for 2018.
This photo was awarded best photo for August by the National Park Foundation's Share the Experience contest out of 10s of 1000s of photos. Donna and Steve are going on a two night stay in Napa and received a free National Park Pass! Click on the mustang to go to the SharetheExperience website.
Donna was honored to have been awarded the cover of the NPS's Centennial Edition Photobook in 2016. This book contains photos of the 400+ units of the National Park System.
In May of 2017, I was invited to Yellowstone to shoot with National Geographic's Your Shot for the celebration of the NPS 100th Anniversary. Here I am with Steve, other local photographers and the editors from D.C. Charlie Hamilton James was the National Geographic photographer on hand with funny stories of his favorite animal, the otter, and his travels in the Amazon. National Geographic online magazine published these two photos in June of 2017.
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Grand Junction, CO 81507, US