C&T Publications 50 States of Art - 2015 - Page 34

Lauri Novak - Illinois I have been taking photos ever since I received my first Kodak X-15 Instamatic Camera at the age of 10. In grade school, my best friend's father was a photographer, we got to "play" with cameras and in the darkroom. With camera in hand I was fortunate growing up to have traveled around the US more than most at an early age. Traveling gave me an appreciation for the world around me. I started seeing in a different way, different perspective and appreciating what I saw. As I got older I had the opportunity to travel a little bit overseas which opened up my eyes to other cultures and even more ways of seeing the world. Capturing these views and perspectives on film at first and now digital and sharing them is my passion. I am finally pursuing this passion and as they say - if you love what you do and do what you love you'll never work a day in your life. I see the world in photographs and love that my photography helps others to see the world around them in a new and different way. Web Site: http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/lauri-novak.html Here is my piece. It is called Autumn Falls. The Rotary Gardens in Janesville, Wisconsin are gorgeous, I can't wait to get back there in the winter, spring and summer! The History of Rotary Botanical Gardens Source: http://rotarybotanicalgardens.org/about/our-history Rotary Botanical Gardens is a non-profit, award-winning botanical showcase, located on 20-acres in the heart of Janesville, Wisconsin. Our awe-inspiring landscapes and gardens are a vibrant and welcoming host to an estimated 100,000 visitors each year. Supported solely by donations, the Gardens receive no tax dollars. The Gardens occupy the site of an abandoned sand and gravel quarry on Palmer Drive. In 1988, the original site between Lions Beach and Kiwanis Pond was covered with debris and used as storage for the Parks Department and a BMX bicycle racetrack. The Gardens’ founder and original visionary, retired orthodontist Dr. Robert Yahr, approached the two Rotary Clubs in Janesville and inquired about their interest in developing a botanical garden for the community to enjoy. Both clubs agreed to this service project. Dr. Yahr’s original idea was to clean up the pond and surrounding area as a club project, but his imagination began to soar and the result was an ambitious new project for Janesville Rotarians. About Dr. Robert Yahr Dr. Robert Yahr was dogged in his dream to create an internationally-themed botanical garden and orchestrated unique collaborations with local Rotary and service clubs, the City of Janesville, businesses, labor unions, citizens and private donors to make it a reality. Now in his 80s, Dr. Yahr maintains an emeritus position on the Board of Directors and strolls through the Gardens on a daily basis. 29