Mary Ellen Chiles

First name
Mary Ellen
Last name
Chiles
Bio

I specialize in landscape photography, and have images from Alaska, the North Cascades, New Zealand, and Iceland. I recently exhibited at the Park Central library in March 2016, and have shown works in the Pacific Northwest. I sell prints and cards on my website, maryellenchiles.com. I also do commissions and events, as well as digital sales.

I am completing my first year in a Master's program in creative writing at Missouri State. I am working on a thesis inspired by working in remote Alaska for five summers. I am a Springfield native and recently returned from Seattle.

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Artist statement

I walked with a friend in the North Cascades in Washington, and I tugged on his arm. “Don’t you see the way the light looks like someone dunked that mountain into an aquarium?” I said. “Don’t you see we’re lucky?” But I feel that way when I notice twigs on the sidewalk or sunlight on a doorknob. So I took photos and I wrote a little bit about people I met. I worked and traveled, and I didn’t try very hard to publish or sell what I did. Then I hit my head on an icy hill in Washington, and I decided I better start trying. Because no one knew how much my brain could handle, I had to listen to myself. With that in mind I began to follow through on creative sparks I used to bury. 18 months into my recovery, I decided to move from Seattle back to Springfield, where I was raised, and start a Master’s in creative writing. At two years the remainder of my concussion symptoms faded at last. I decided I better continue listening to myself, and I began to show more photographs. I began to sell them, juggling graduate school with a starting a business. I also write poems and essays for a baseball literature site I founded called OlAbner.com

Portfolio images