Growing up in North Dakota was a gift because even though we were stranded out in the middle of a sweeping prairie we learned to appreciate the value of simple yet very grand things; clouds that spread from horizon to horizon, oceans of waving wheat, blowing snow that drifts forever, a sky full of northern lights, ditches brimming with milkweed ready to burst, and prairie roses lining miles of railroad track. Beauty seemed scarce with the severe landscape and harsh lifestyle for anyone who dared to eke out a living there. But the simple life taught me three things: there is beauty in everything, everything is important, and I can share my vision of important beautiful things.
Art was a passion of mine since discovering finger painting in first grade where I planned to become a teacher so I could decide what fun art projects we would do all day long. There was never enough art in my education until I entered college as an art major. I received 2 degrees, a B.A. in Communication Arts and a B.A. in Fine Art from Eastern Montana College, now Montana State University.
After marrying a missionary teacher we lived on the Navajo reservation at Immanuel Mission. We also lived in Prescott, Arizona where I picked up work as a commissioned artist and worked for interior designers doing decorative painting and murals.
We also enjoyed a prolonged vacation on a smallisland in the Bahamas when my husband, Tim, found a temporary teaching job on Man-O-War Cay for 6 months.
Moving back to reality, we settled in Michigan to raise our 3 boys. The Michigan climate is not as sunny as Arizona, not as windy as North Dakota, and doesn’t have a big sky like Montana or turquoise water like the Bahamas but Michigan does have something for everyone. We are glad we stayed in West Michigan to raise our family and establish AK Donahue Design.
AK Donahue Design has grown from a painting and decorating company to a full service interior design firm. Your Style, Your Design, Your Space has been my motto since day one because I work side by side with my customers to find creative solutions. My experience with painting, murals and sculpture has made a good foundation for all of the elements of design from an artist’s perspective. I will never forget that there is beauty in everything, everything is important, and I can share my vision of important beautiful things with the world.