Kalen Henderson purchased Griffin Photography in 1987, and established as Henderson Photography, a home portrait studio in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, a county-seat community of 8,000 in Southeast Iowa. Within two years, the studio had outgrown its original location and was moved to a larger home setting, outgrowing that location in less than one year. A building project allowed the studio to expand through 1993 when it was moved to a retail location where it would remain until 1996, then moving to Jefferson St., in Mt. Pleasant until the summer of 2006.
An opportunity to teach and travel kept Kalen away from the studio from 2006 until May of 2010 when she opened StudioK in a remodeled lumber yard building in Danville, Iowa, where it remained until May 1, 2012, when StudioK reopened at 2555 Lexington Ave., in Mt. Pleasant, less than half a mile north of the original Griffin Photography Studio.
As Kalen begins her 32nd year as a professional photographer, she continues to learn, teach, grow and enjoy every opportunity to provide her clients with memorable portraits.
In those 32 years, Kalen has earned her share of honors and awards, including her Photographic Craftsman Degree in 1996, her Master of Photography in 1998 and her Master of Electronic Imaging in 2000. She became a Certified Professional Photographer in 1995 and a Certified Electronic Imager in 1999. She has served as a member of the PPA Standards Committee and is a PPA Affiliate Juror in both Portrait and Electronic Imaging. Her print awards range from PPA General and Loan Collections to both Kodak Gallery and Fuji Masterpiece Awards. She is a recipient of the PPA Photographer of the Year Award and had her images selected for display by the Korean Professional Photographers Association at their Pacific Rim Exhibition. Kalen earned her Educational Associate from the American Society of Photographers in 2002 with her thesis, "Less is More", and was also named an Approved Photographic Instructor by the PPA. She was honored with the PPA National Award, given by the American Society of Photographers in January 2011.
Her list of teaching and speaking credentials includes dozens of state and regional conventions as well as five PPA National Conventions and three appearances at Senior Photographers International. She has instructed at the Kansas School of Professional Photography; Golden Gate School of Professional Photography; Florida School of Professional Photography; Great Lakes School of Professional Photography; The Texas School of Professional Photography; The West Coast School of Professional Photography; Triangle School of Professional Photography and the Colorado Workshops. She was chosen by the Kyushu Professional Photographers to speak at their national convention in Japan in 1999 and is a contributing writer to their national magazine.
In 2008, Kalen was selected as one of six International Jurors to travel to Seoul, South Korea, and judge the Pacific Rim Print Competition. Once again, Kalen traveled to Seoul, South Korea, in the spring of 2010 to judge and speak at the Pacific Rim Print Competition and Professional Photographers of Korea convention and returned again in 2011. Since 2007, Kalen has continued to travel the globe in an effort to develop new styles and appreciations in both photography and print making. In addition to Korea, Kalen has traveled to South Africa, Australia, Italy, Jamaica, Aruba, England, France, Mexico, Costa Rica and throughout the U.S. Her artwork now hangs not only throughout their home in Mt. Pleasant, but in more prominent homes and offices across the U.S.
In March 2015, Kalen stepped in as President of the American Society of Photographers, an organization of professional photographers all of whom hold advanced degrees in photography. She has served on their Board of Governors since 2000.
Kalen also lends her talents as both a photographer and video producer to her church serving on the tech team. She has competed in nine half marathons, two 10K runs and twice earned the Disney Coast-to-Coast Challenge medal. Along with her husband, Mike, they have three children: Whitney, a graduate of the University of Central Florida now married to David Rogers and a Financial Advisor with Edward Jones in Mt. Pleasant, IA; Bryn, a graduate of Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC, also a Financial Advisor for Edward Jones in Chico, CA, and married to Kayla (Balasek) Henderson of Chico; and Mallory, a graduate of Iowa State University and the Chief Operating Officer of Airport Road Vineyard and Winery in Mt. Pleasant, also owned by Mike and Kalen Henderson and located on the same property as StudioK. Mallory married Raul Becerril of Mission, TX, in December 2017. Mike and Kalen became grandparents in November 2014 with the arrival of William, son of Whitney and David, in July of 2015 with Bryn and Kayla's daughter, Caroline and again in November 2018 with Bryn and Kayla's second daughter, Stella. Grandchild No. 4 arrived on March 12, 2019, with Mallory & Raul's son, Enrique.
To visit the website of Airport Road Vineyard, click here.