Seasons of Water

photography by Gretchen Batz & haiku by Nancy Wiley
Elsah, Illinois

about the artists

Gretchen Graft Batz

Nature photographer, Gretchen Graft Batz, grew up on a small farm near Nauvoo, Illinois. The outdoors is her favorite workplace; maintaining a childlike "sense of wonder" is her goal as an artist.

She completed her Master's Degree in Elementary Education at Western Illinois University in Macomb, where she met her husband, Roger. Kindred spirits, they camped for eight weeks in Europe on their honeymoon. Over the years, they've backpacked in Norway, Finland, Germany, the former Yugoslavia, Greece, and most recently, in New Zealand, Australia, and Fiji, always seeking in-depth cultural experiences.

In addition to photography, Gretchen enjoys writing (especially haiku), and she occasionally teaches creative writing and multicultural arts for children's afterschool learning programs.

photograph © 2002 by Inga Mack

Both her written works and photographs have appeared in: The St. Louis Post-Dispatch Sunday Magazine, The Christian Science Monitor, Farm Women, Illinois Magazine, Illinois Audubon, Frogpond, and Mayfly. Her photography is sold at the Springfield State Museum Shop, the Rend Lake Illinois Artisan's Shop, and Componere Gallery, University City, Missouri.

She has been working at her art of photography for over 20 years. In 2000 she exhibited photographs with haiku poet, Lee Gurga, at the Global Haiku Conference hosted by Millikin University in Decatur, Illinois. See the resulting online collection, Long Walk Alone, published as a Brooks Books online edition. She recently conducted a photography workshop at the Nature Institute in Godfrey, Illinois.

For further information on her work, please write to:

Gretchen Batz • Maybeck Place 1 • Elsah, IL 62028
or phone (618) 374-1599

Nancy H. Wiley

Nancy Hatch Wiley has lived in the midwest most of her life. In 1968 she and her family moved back to Elsah, Illinois where she first met her husband, Bill, while attending Principia College in the'50s. Both of their sons, Dave and Brad, graduated from the college.


photogrpah © 2002 by Gretchen Batz  

In 1990 Bill took early retirement from Principia where he and Nancy had been working for 22 years. Since then they have gone to Florida each winter. Several of Nancy's haiku in this exhibit were inspired by her solitary walks on the beach. Although her husband passed on last year, Nancy continues to live in Elsah and spend her winters in Florida.

Nancy has been writing haiku ever since having been introduced to the genre by Paul O. Williams at Principia College in the mid-'70s. She has often had poems published in haiku journals and was a winner of The Christian Science Monitor haiku bumper sticker contest in 1999. Nancy has enjoyed collaborating with Gretchen to create an integrated experience of haiku and photography for well over 15 years. Some of her haiku in this collection have been previously published in Dragonfly, South by Southeast, Haiku Headlines Calendar, Brussels Sprout, bottle rockets and the Haiku Society of America Anthology for 2001.

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photo index           introduction

Brooks Books Online
6 Madera Court
Taylorville, Illinois 62568

about the artists

Seasons of Water: Haiku & Photography
© Gretchen Batz & Nancy Wiley, 2002