A tiny bundle of composure

Hundreds of people cross my path each year, appearing in my viewfinder for a matter of seconds as I'm carrying out my work as a photojournalist. Some are famous or powerful. Most are not, but are influential in their families or communities, which is equally important and worthy of notice. I try to capture in my photographs what makes each person unique. Some subjects reveal themselves easily; others are quite guarded. Often I leave my assignments amazed at the diversity and complexity of humankind, especially after working with those upbeat folks who leave a wake of positive energy.

Five-year-old Michaella Flint was just such a person. She was showing her enormous draft horse, Prince, at a county fair in Vermont last summer when I happened upon her at Lamoille County Field Days - an event overflowing with the best of Americana. She was fearless and funny and confident beyond her years. She proudly took center stage with her gentle giant and stole my heart. When I followed her back to the horse trailer afterward, she continued to amaze me with her composure. What a powerful presence in such a tiny package.

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