Nature’s Window. Lake Atitlan and San Pedro, framed by foliage, as seen from halfway up Volcan San Pedro.
By Alyssa Belford, M1, 2023
Spring break for Alyssa Belford came with an opportunity to explore another part of the world. Experience some of the sights from this year’s cohort of students who traveled abroad to Guatemala. From the picturesque views, to candid moments of daily life, Alyssa’s photos help bring us all to this place between the waters.
My name is David Brown and I am an M1 who runs a small photography business, DB Photo Co. I started photography in high school for fun with taking photos of my friends here and there. My freshman year at Kansas State, I got a job as a university student photographer which really allowed my skill to increase as I worked under two very phenomenal photographers. With some guidance, I was able to start DB Photo Co. and begin developing a portfolio as I took on senior photos, graduation photos, engagements/proposals, and weddings over the past four years. Some of my favorite memories have been from behind the camera, and I hope to keep doing photography alongside medicine in the future!
Having been a cross-disciplinary student studying both biology and visual arts, my undergraduate work sought to combine the two interests, which can be seemingly contradictory but also surprising similar. Most of my work is inspired by nature; the natural world around us is incredibly beautiful, with all the different forms and colors, and it is also scientifically fascinating because every element exists for a purpose and is a specific adaptation. This contrast and tension between rigidity and fluidity is an idea that underlies the pieces I make in the metalsmithing studio, in an effort to find a balance between the two.
“A Crowning Achievement” truly serves as a culmination of my undergraduate artistic career, twisting together realism and fantasy, and striking a balance between delicate and aggressive. It had always been a dream to make a headpiece and this piece specifically was inspired by the costuming and design of the Lord of the Rings series. The making of crown was a challenge to myself: to make something as flat and lifeless as metal sheets into something that was three-dimensional and organic. So, this crown is made almost entirely of thin copper sheets that has been hammered into hollow branch forms; these branches were soldered, hammered again, cleaned, electroformed, patina-ed, and finally gold-leafed.
After taking Step 1, I traveled to California to camp out in Big Sur where there is no phone service. We slept under the redwoods, woke before sunrise, and spent time hiking and taking in all the stunning views. This photo is of the iconic Bixby Creek Bridge, which is one of the most highly photographed places. It was so stunning, so I spent a while trying to capture it the best I could!
In the Summer of 2016, Nadia Nawabi travelled to Uganda as the president of Globemed at UMKC. She stayed in Uganda for 2 months and lived as a local would in a rural village. She mentioned that living as a local meant she only had the opportunity to bathe maybe once a week if she was lucky and she primarily ate foods similar to vegan faire during the entire duration of her trip. Nawabi spoke of the fundraising efforts of the Globemed organization at UMKC to raise funding for a clinic in rural Uganda. The organization sends a team to the clinic every summer to speak with the clinic staff and locals and to better ask what projects they need to allocate the funds towards. This allows the Globemed organization to build a better relationship with the community utilizing the clinic, as well as allowing the students to take the time to understand what the people there want and what they believe they need the most. UMKC Globemed also helps carry out projects with the locals, and Nawabi had the opportunity to implement a sanitation and sexual health project. The project began with Nawabi and her fellow classmates giving lectures on sanitation ans sexual health at local schools. She noted that the greatest memory she took from this trip was the smiles she saw there everyday.