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About Our Art
Welcome Kirk Decker’s Photography on Best of Missouri Hands
I think photographers exist on a continuum, with creators on one end and viewers on the other. The creator has an idea or vision and makes an image of that vision. The viewer looks at the outside world and notices the evening light as it glows through the tall grasses, or on a stranger’s face, and that’s what they make their image of.
I feel that I am on the viewer end of the spectrum. I think this work around us – – the people and things in it – – are quite beautiful. Frequently, it’s a beauty that’s hidden until light & shadow, place & time, and, fleeting expression suddenly, unexpectedly come together for a few moments to be a muse pointing towards that beauty.
My job, as it were, is to be constantly on the lookout for these moments and constantly refining my craft, so that when the muse points, I can capture and translate what I see into a photographic image.
Maybe what I do is art, and maybe it’s just nice craftsmanship. I don’t really care either way. I don’t think that’s my call to make. I think it’s okay for art to be about beauty and craftsmanship. No one is sure where the path they take will lead, but as an artist you have to be honest about what moves you. The beauty in this world around us, the people, the things that are in it are what moves me.
I grew up on a Kansas wheat farm. My grandfather and aunt were both avid photographers and, through them, I became interested in photography. I took photography classes in 4H, entered competitions, and did well.
I photographed for the yearbook in Jr. High, and High School, and as an 8th grader was actually hired to photograph a wedding (those people were CRAZY to hire me, but you gotta start somewhere). I continued to photograph and study photography during my college years, and found work as a portrait photographer and custom printer.
I’ve worked for several professional portrait studios and won various contests and awards. Some of my work is in the permanent collection of the Professional Photographers of America and has been featured in their publications.
Currently I live north of Kansas City, Missouri with an assortment of dogs, cats, chickens, kids, and a stunningly beautiful woman, who tolerates my obsession.