I believe I love words just about as much as I do photography. So I decided instead of writing everything out I will just give you a glimpse of some of the words that make up Linda. I look at it like these were my “tags”…..the words that if you put in a Google Search Linda Wanless would pop up.
Love… Family… Jesus… Friendships…Daughter…Mother…Creativity… Photography… Simplicity… Play…Organization… Snuggle… Song… Nature… Sunrise… Cotton… Jamaican Mission Program… Color… Relax… Alone time… Family time… Run away with my incredible husband time… Sunsets… Books…Daughters I never birthed… Texture… Sister… Books… Pillows… Hearts… Texas… Aunt… Travel… Music………
and so many more….my life is filled with abundant overflowing joy and I am beyond grateful to my Heavenly Father for that.
I have loved photography for as long as I can remember. I can’t help but cringe and smile when I look at the polaroids of my friend Gina and I all dressed up before our first Rick Springfield concert back in High School. I have made my way through a multitude of sizes and styles of camera but have a list a mile long of cameras and equipment that I covet.
I can’t say that I have a specific style when it comes to my photography – it’s just Linda. It’s like when I try to change my style of clothing I always end up returning to my Linda style….It’s Me. So I have tried to give up on changing who I am and what I love just because I love it on someone else… The best thing I can do is be authentically me.
The name Piece of Heaven seems to me an obvious name for my photography. I first came up with the name several years ago. I remember thinking that everytime I put my eye up to the lens of a camera it is like I am able to capture a little piece of heaven..
I’m in constant learning and experimenting mode. My biggest downfall is wanting to be 10 paces ahead at all times. There is a never ending supply of things to see, to do and to explore and I am a sucker for adventure. I long to photograph the active volcano on Stromboli Island, one of the Aeolian Islands, that lies between Sicily and the mainland. I also dream of taking a coastal hike to the Sentiero degli Dei (Path of the Gods), above the Amalfi Coast, south of Naples. But the ultimate adventure would be to photograph the Great Barrier Reef Whitsundays located just off the coast of Queensland which is the most photographed spot in the world. This planet we live on is amazing. Ultimately my dream as a photographer would be to live the life of Peter Lik, the Australian Master Photographer. I understand the intense exhiliration to travel the world and photograph places that few people have ever laid eyes on. I tell my husband it is a perfect plan – I can photograph and he can carry my gear. Sounds like Heaven to me.
I am a born and bred Texan and have the pride built right in that goes with that statement. In 1987 at the tender age of 16 (1 week from my 17th birthday) I was sitting at a stop light with 2 of my friends when a 1969 Red Chevelle pulled up beside me carrying the man that would forever change my life. Even though he was stationed at the Air Force base not far from my town he was not much more than a kid himself. But nonetheless, the week after I graduated from High School we married and there has not been one second of my life that I regretted that decision. He is my best friend and I have renamed him Peter. In the Bible the name Peter means “the Rock” and that is what he is to me…My Rock. He works hard, loves softly and makes my heart leap when he walks into the room. Two years after he finished his service in the military we packed up and moved up north to live on his families 4 generation farm in Southern Wisconsin to start our own excavation business. Not long after settling in we had our first born Rebecca. She has completed her 1st year of College majoring in photography. She has an amzing eye and her father’s drive and work ethic. I often say that when I grow up I want to be Becca. My son Dustin is not at all what I had invisioned but everything that I didn’t know that I could dream him to be. He has his father’s good looks and a musical talent that came from my mom, briefly passing through me and landed with full force in this amazingly talented boy. My favorite past time is laying on his bed listening to him play by ear a classical piece on the old piano that I bought for a pittance at an auction. It makes me sick to my stomach to think that I almost sold it before I realized the musician that lay dormant in that boy. I deeply love my sweet family and the creativity that is bursting in our home.
I have to say thank you first and foremost to my best friend and husband Rob. Thank you for all of our photo dates and your patience with my need to take just one more shot. Thank you to my wonderfully creative two children, Becca and Dustin. Watching you both strive to be better at what you do inspires me to no end. Thank you to my sisters for the 100 different job ideas that you have put in front of me and believed that I could succeed in every one and now supporting me in what I was created to do. I thank the artistic people that have woven your way in and out of my life – most specifically my mom. Her love for color and texture and anything creative was impacting me more than any of us realized. Thank you to all my incredible family and friends that support me and lift me up. My prayer would be that everyone could live one day in my life and realize what it means to be unimaginably blessed. And I end with thanking my Heavenly Father….for this incredible world that you have placed me in. And that you gave me the desire and ability to capture and share with others a Piece of Heaven.
Delight yourself in the LORD, and He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the LORD, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass. ~ Psalm 37:4,5