Almost 40 years ago I moved to my dreamland ... Whitefish, Montana.
I first came to Whitefish in the early 1970's as a traveling professional singer/guitarist to perform with my husband at a resort here called the Viking Lodge, where the Whitefish Lake Lodge now stands. We had a lounge show act called Keel & Sullivan. Then, as things sometimes happen, our marriage and singing act split up in the fall of 1977. That is when I made the decision to move here permanently. I've been here ever since.
To survive alone in Whitefish I spent my first 3 winters teaching skiing at our local ski resort, Big Mountain Ski Resort (recently renamed Whitefish Mountain Resort) in the daytime and at night, performed as a solo act singing and playing guitar in one of resort nightclubs.
In 1981 I turned a life-long hobby, photography, into a second profession and thus began MOUNTAIN PHOTOGRAPHY, an 'on the slopes' photography service at the ski resort. I never thought anything could equal my passion for music, but happily photography did just that! I continued to sing in nightclubs on the Mountain and around our valley for many years to follow, but gradually MOUNTAIN PHOTOGRAPHY consumed more and more of my time and my music had to take a back seat. In the summers, beginning in 1983, I contracted my photography business to be the whitewater photography service for all of the rafting companies in the West Glacier area of Glacier National Park.
For the next 27 years I owned and operated MOUNTAIN PHOTOGRAPHY, headquartered in the ski resort village and added to it a resort wear/gift shop that I called 'Crazy Bear & Company'. In the fall of 2007 I sold the ski resort portion of my photography business and closed the doors on my store. However, 35 years later, my crew and I continue on with the whitewater photography project. We are located on the Middle Fork of the Flathead river. At a sometimes not so gentle little rapid called 'Bone Crusher' we shoot photos daily of every commercial and private boater that happens to float by us.
As I re-invent my photography career apart from the ski resort business I am finding my passion for photography becoming even more intense and more fun than ever. I not only have more time to enjoy being the 'eye' behind the camera, but I am also having fun cultivating new skills such as Photoshop restoration and editing projects, teaching digital camera workshops, restoring old home movie film to DVD, video editing and most fun of all, selling my own photographic art.
Happily, music and singing professionally has also found it's way back into my life. I travel 3 to 4 months of the year to perform around the western states, and spend my summers singing weekly at a Whitefish dude/guest ranch called the Bar W. I can truly say ... 'Now, I have the best of ALL MY WORLDS!!!'