Meet Shawn Bowen. Visiting her office is like visiting an art gallery. On her desk rest great candid photos of her son and daughter. On the wall, a pair of touching prints of Bowen’s retired firefighter husband and their son, both dressed in fireman’s bunker gear. On the bookcase, mist-covered river scenes. All the photos are strikingly beautiful, clearly the work of a talented photographer.
Bowen took them all.
A 19-year veteran of the Capital Planning Advisory Board, Bowen’s job consists of shepherding the six-year spending plan for every state agency. By statute, every IT need, construction wish or grant funding needs to be compiled during odd-numbered years and it’s Capital Planning’s heady, complex task to gather it all.
After hours, she can often be found with camera in hand, driving country roads or wandering river banks looking for her next great photo. Bowen’s “serious hobby” first gained notoriety in 2012 when an inkling prodded her to head to Frankfort Cemetery. There, overlooking the freshly snow-covered Capitol and surrounding trees, she snapped a photo
that would quickly go viral.
“It had an appeal that even I didn’t really get right away. Someone finally convinced me to put it online, and then it just took off,” said Bowen.
She continues to look for that kind of magic through a camera lens.
“I love shooting landscapes, going down a country road, no destination in mind. Just see what’s out there, but I love taking pictures of people, too. I love interactions between mothers and their kids, the way moms fuss over their kids.”