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        Thanks for your interest in Magic Marker Creations.  My name is Mark and I grew up in Central Wisconsin and now I spend much of my time roaming the North Woods of Wisconsin.  When I was a young boy and in Cub Scouts, I performed a magic skit for one of our scout family meetings.  I performed some simple magic tricks as "Marko The Magnificent", but after that evening, my brothers and sisters started calling me "Magic Marker" and the nickname has stuck with me to this very day.  In fact, we siblings added the 'er ending to all of our names so Jim became Jimmer, Dave became Daver, and so on.

        I decided to incorporate the Magic Marker name into my business name, but I did not want to limit the services name to photo or photography, since I wanted to do much more than that.  I tried several variations and decided to add "Creations" as the final ingredient to the name.  Many of the services and products I come up with, involve some major creativity not normally found in standard photo and video production services.  I have had a few instances where there is confusion about the name, from people who think I sell magic markers or create things with magic markers.  Most people enjoy the story when I explain the name.  And though my services, products and personal artworks are rooted in photos and photography, as my business name implies, I have left my creativity roam free to explore any and all avenues beyond simply taking and reproducing photos!

The Marshfield, Wisconsin downtown fire:

       I originally opened my business October of 2003 in Penny Court, located in downtown Marshfield, WI.   Business was beginning to grow rapidly until April 1st, 2005, just over a year of being in business, when an arsonist started a fire in an 2nd floor apartment in the building next door.   My shop was located against the adjoining wall from the fire and shared a common wall.   My wife was downtown having early coffee with friends and someone in the restaurant noticed the smoke and fire.   She and her friends ran down the street to discover the fire was near my shop and fire fighters were already on the scene.  She called me at home and I rushed down to find the building next-door, engulfed in flames and smoke.  I watched from across the street near the Marshfield Post Office, as the business I had worked to build, for more than two years was now in jeopardy of being turned to ashes.  At a minimum, I knew that the water damage would be devastating to my computer, video and photo equipment.  My first concern though, was for the safety of the fire fighters diligently risking their lives to save lives and buildings of the entire downtown area.   However, believing that, did not keep me from walking away from the scene when a back draft explosion caved in the roof of the burning building...which convinced me that this fire had now become the beginning of the end for my business and the Penny Court building as a whole.  

        As I viewed what looked to me like panic on the part of the fire fighters, forced me to walk away to contemplate where to go from that point, where my working life would have to be reset.  To my surprise when I returned to the scene, was that the fire fighters had once again gained control of the blaze.   My Dad had rushed into town after my wife had called him with the news and stood by my side as we watched the events continue to unfold.

        Later in the afternoon, the Fire Chief allowed us to go into the our building and "grab and go" important records and other things we could carry.  My Dad talked the Chief into allowing the two of us to also grab my two computers which were the heart of my business.   When we went inside, the door to my shop had been kicked in, but to my amazement, ALL of my equipment (including a new color laser printer I had purchased the day before the fire) and furniture had been covered with water and fire proof tarps.   In addition, the Firemen had taken all the framed photos and artwork off the walls and placed them out of harms way.
        There were no words to express my gratitude to the Fire Departments involved, so I created the "Fire Fight" photo collage from photos that were donated.   The profits from the sales go to the fire safety and other donation programs for the five Fire Departments that helped save my business and all the others on both sides of the fire demolished buildings in between.   I believe that they saved the entire downtown with their bravery and expertise. These small town and volunteer Fire Fighters saved Marshfield from major damage when they fought a fire, unlike most of them had ever seen in their lives.  All too often in our busy lives we overlook the training and expertise of these brave people and we take for granted that they are often VOLUNTEERING their time and fire fighting is NOT their paying job.  Please help support your local Fire and Police Departments!

Self Portrait shots - Years ago and now!    Smile For The Camera!    My Self Portrait Collage - You have to see it up close!

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