About Suzanne

“Poverty of means is no justification for poverty of spirit or imagination.” ~ Pierre Renoir

031 suzanne 2014 5x7 closerAttending college wasn’t an option, but having a desire to learn I taught myself the art of photography when my fourth child was three years old. I began by studying the great masters, Renoir being my favorite. I learned of their lives, struggles and successes, as well as their posing, lighting and color of pallet. Then I read every book in the library regarding portrait photography. With a borrowed 35mm camera, I practiced by photographing my four children. One year later, we moved from Wisconsin to Colorado, and armed with that same borrowed 35mm camera and a $40.00 flash, I declared myself a photographer. It might be safe to say that I didn’t know what I didn’t know, but what was lacking in knowledge was more than made up with “spirit and imagination.” An ad in the local paper suggested I would photograph weddings affordably. Couples responded, but… let’s review, shall we? All I had photographed up to this time was my four young children, so there was one portrait of each of them on the wall – not exactly wedding photography. Couples came and politely left. This just wasn’t the way I had imagined it, so…I went to a trophy shop and returned with four blue ribbons to display on my children’s portraits. The very next couple said, “Wow – blue ribbons!”, and I was hired!

Here I am, 3 decades later, still a photographer, and today, the volume of my work speaks for itself. I have taken thousands of commissioned portraits and photographed weddings across the country and internationally. My work and techniques have been published, and my portraits have been recognized with awards in national contests. My interior and “open air” studios are like no other since I personally built sets that include a wishing well, a cabin, and a pond with a pier touching the water’s edge. As a constant reminder of my beginnings, a 35mm camera pendant hangs around my neck. My “spirit and imagination” continuously enjoy new heights.

Confined to a wheelchair and having lost the use of his fingers due to crippling arthritis, Renoir would have a brush strapped to the palm of his hand allowing him to paint with the movement of his wrist. He said, “Surely I must be the luckiest man in the world, for all I can do is what I love most.” If the day comes when I can no longer hold my camera, I hope someone straps it to my hands because that’s how much I love what I do.

“Perhaps my favorite quotations say more about me than the people I have quoted.” ~ Suzanne