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Volunteer Highlight: Capturing the Beauty of Bloomfield

As we celebrate our 20th Anniversary and highlight the generosity of our community we'd like to introduce the DALC family to some special donors and supporters. Danni Lang, our Development Associate, spoke with the artist M.Roelli. Her photos are used in countless DALC publications and help tell the story of conservation. You can find her on Instagram and Facebook to see more of her work or order prints.  

How did you first hear about Driftless Area Land Conservancy? 

I moved to this region from Northern Wisconsin to work at Folklore Village. Shortly after I started, Driftless Area Land Conservancy members burned Folklore Village's prairie. This was my first encounter with large scale, hands-on conservancy work, and my first time seeing a burn. (Pretty exciting introduction!) This opened my eyes to the incredible changes that can happen to the land when people care for it.  

What inspires you to take photos at Bloomfield Prairie and other beautiful places in the Driftless? 

I am intrigued by small details in nature that are often overlooked. Wide views are gorgeous, but when you get close and take the time to really look at a flower or rock or leaf you discover a world of intricate beauty. Textures and color combinations always amaze me and make me smile. I try to capture this feeling in photographs to not only help it last, but to remind us all to look closer.  

Why do you volunteer to let DALC use your photos to tell the story of conservation? I try to photograph nature in ways that make people pause and smile. I know DALC strives to preserve this land - I strive to help people notice  it. I'm honored that you share my photos and hope they inspire people to explore and spend a little time with whatever bit of the world they encounter.  

What is your favorite part of the Driftless? I grew up among the lakes and forests of Northern Wisconsin. When I moved here, I was absolutely blown away by the rolling hills, rock outcroppings and panoramic views that seemed to just open up around every curve.  I wondered if that feeling would wear off after "I got used to it."  It hasn't. I'm still in awe every single day.  Mix in the spring ephemerals tucked in wooded areas, the showy blooms of a prairie and the magnificent lone oak trees in fields and you have the incredible Driftless. (I realize this is more than one thing, but I can't choose a favorite. My favorite is the incredible diversity!) ​

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