Commercial Pilot – SCUBA Dive Master – Adventurer – Photographer – Mayanist – Activist – Author
During my career in commercial aviation I piloted single- and multi-engine land and floatplanes acquiring nearly 6,000 hours of flight time. At Flight Safety International /DeHavilland I developed, supervised, and taught aviation Ground School & Flight Simulator Programs. At the University of Waterloo I studied psychology, genetics, and anthropology (Psychology 1987).
Spurred by my appreciation of indigenous cultures, I relocated to Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula (1993-96). From homebase in Cozumel & Playa del Carmen, I traveled extensively throughout Mesoamerica, living with five different Maya groups in their homes: Mopan and K’ekchi, Belize; Northern Lacandon & Tztozil, Mexico; and Mam, Guatemala.
During my longitudinal ethnographic study of K’ekchi, Mopan, and Lacandon Maya, I also acted as a guide at archaeological sites, an aviary, and the undersea world, an extension of my slide and lecture series. Now residing in Belleville, Ontario, Canada I return regularly to Belize, Guatemala, and Mexico continuing my photographic journal of their lifestyles. I have traveled to 45 of the world’s countries – only 145 more to see!
My lecture circuit continues in Canada with my images of the Modern Maya peoples and their ancient cities as well as images of nature, travel, and wildlife. My volunteer work includes photographic documentation of medical missions (Kenya, Honduras), classroom teaching (Guatemala, Kenya) and being a companion to seniors (Guatemala). I am a Rotarian.
- Santa Fe Photography: Travels Contest 2015 http://www.santafeworkshops.com
- RMG Exposed Juried Show McLaughlin Gallery, Oshawa 2013 -2016 http://rmgexposed.ca
- Verge Travel with Purpose Magazine Annual Photo Contest 2008-2011, 2013-2014
- QAC Expressions – 1998 – 2017 http://quinteartscouncil.org
- Parrott Art Gallery Juried Show – Honors 2013
- Belleville Art Association 2013 (Best in Show) http://www.bellevilleart.ca
- Belleville Art Association 2014 (Best Use of Light)
- Belleville Art Association 2015 (Dona Knudsen IMPACT Award)
- CLIC-PECAC – 2010-2016 (Honors, Best B&W) http://www.clicphotoshow.com
- MAGNUM Photography Workshop Exhibit 2012
PUBLICATIONS [Articles & Photographs}:
- National Geographic Society www.nationalgeographic.com
- Smithsonian Journeys www.smithsonianjourneys.org
- The Globe and Mail
- The Toronto Star
- The National Post
- Verge Magazine: Travel with Purpose www.vergemagazine.com
- The Doctor’s Review www.doctorsreview.com/volunteer/
- M.E.D.I.C.O. www.medico.org
- Mundo Maya Magazine (out of print/archived)
- Go Abroad Fair www.studyandgoabroad.com
- World Wildlife Fund – Canada www.wwf.ca
- Medecins sans Frontieres/Doctors without Borders www.msf.ca
Photographs can be viewed online at this website shared with her son, Brandon Melton; information about Brandon is found at www.lola-photography.com/brandon/bio.html.