About the Author...Barbara J. Kurtz
Barbara Kurtz was born in Colorado, raised in Illinois, and graduated from high school and college in Tucson, Arizona. After graduating from the U of A, Barb married Ken, a professional baseball player. They both loved the sun and didn’t mind the heat, so it was Tucson where they settled and raised two children. With a degree in Education (K-12), she taught a variety of life skills classes at the high school, level her favorite being Child Development. Her first camera, a Kodak Brownie, was a birthday present when she was six. She was thrilled with it and slipped into the role of family historian. When she retired from teaching, photography then developed into a serious hobby. It was then that she acquired a DLSR camera. She began learning about her new camera by taking photos of the birds in her backyard. The day she spotted a hummingbird bathing at their fountain was the day she became hooked on capturing and perfecting shots of these quick tiny birds. Fortunate enough to live in Tucson, Arizona where the world famous Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum and its hummingbird aviary are located, she spends much of her free time there.
How her books...
One spring day at the Museum in 2010 the author witnessed a mother hummingbird building a nest for her soon to be family. Barbara was fascinated and could not stay away. Every other day, with her photography equipment in tow, she went to see the new developments taking place within the nest. She was fascinated with every aspect, from the moms using spider webs to build the nest to the jackhammer motion used to feed her tiny chicks. Being an educator and a grandmother, Barbara decided that all children needed to see this. Obviously, a good number of children have seen empty nests but how many have seen active nests? It is the miracle taking place inside the nest that provides the complete experience.
Came to be.
After seeing her photographs and a copy of the book she had created online, several of her teacher friends encouraged her to publish it. It was a combination of her photographs, encouragement from educators, and her commitment to provide this miracle of nature to as many children as possible that lead to her first book A Hummingbird’s Story: How I Came to Be.