Almost everybody has a camera. That’s all our eyes are, really. They absorb light and record images. The camera, as a mechanical device, is a second set of eyes. It permanently records those scenes and memories that would otherwise be shuffled in the deck of cards that make up our personal history. A photograph is a framed moment, forever displaying one particular point of view.

A snapshot is like looking through someone else’s eyes.

That’s why good photography matters. We all have photos in a shoebox somewhere, taken by a stranger, portraying us as we want to be seen. Travelers in a foreign city. Adoring couple. Tight-knit family, arms around each other’s shoulders. Smiling children. Candid seconds at a party, when everything seemed full of light and possibility.

Kristen Rice doesn’t take pictures. She makes them.

Any professional photographer can wax eloquent about staging, lighting, equipment, and poses. What makes Kristen stand apart is that she never saw herself as a technical prodigy. Even with her recent success, she still shakes her head inĀ confusion when people think of her as an artist.

“I just wanted to take creative pictures of my friends and family,” she said. Kristen Rice was never meant to hold squeaky toys above crying infants’ heads at a Sears photobooth for Easter photos that always get tossed in a drawer. Look at her work, look at her world, and see.

Almost everybody wants to believe the world has a bit of magic in it. Deep in us, we harbor a childlike hope that things are good, that people are good, that this life has thousands upon thousands of tiny secret events that are worth keeping because they are good.

Take a look around, let the work speak for itself. Find wonder and whimsy, mischief and merriment.

See the world, see yourself, through Kristen’s eyes.