Who We Are


Biography | Awards | Exhibitions | Instructional Experience | Activities/Current Projects

Biography

Brian Monk was born in Milton, Florida in 1969. Shortly after his birth, Brian’s family moved to Charleston, West Virginia where he spent the next 18 years.  As a young man, Brian’s intense passion for nature led to his profession and his many hobbies including bird-watching, orchid growing and natural history.

In 1992, Brian received his B.S., cum laude, from Hampden Sydney College in Virginia followed by a Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Virginia Tech in 1997.  In 2005, while working as a Veterinarian in Orlando, Florida, Brian met the love of his life, Mary-Margaret, in Ft. Lauderdale.

Mary-Margaret Monk grew up in Virginia Beach, Virginia and later moved to Fort Lauderdale Florida.   Mary-Margaret received a B.A., summa cum laude, from Florida Atlantic University followed by a Juris Doctorate from Nova Southeaster University School of Law.  Mary-Margaret is a civil litigation attorney and mediator.  Her hobbies include her husband, Brian, photography, their cats and her many aquariums.

Because of their passion for all things orchid, Brian and Mary-Margaret formed Blu Llama Orchids, Inc.   They were married on April Fool’s Day in 2006 and reside in Ft. Lauderdale with their five cats and their ever expanding orchid collection.

Brian started growing and hybridizing orchids in his backyard, but this has expanded to 4000 square feet of greenhouse space.   He will grow anything green, but focuses on his hybridizing projects, which include the development of multi-floral white and pink Paphiopedilums, warmth-tolerant red Oncidiinae, and a standard pink Cattleya with an all-white lip. 

Accompanied by his wife and inspired by his orchids, Brian continues to pursue and perfect his orchid culture and photographic skills.  Brian’s photography has won awards online, in the 2007 Miami International Orchid Show, and at the 2008 World Orchid Conference, and will be exhibited in Florida and California in 2009.  Brian is currently a student judge with the American Orchid Society.

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Awards

First Place: "Ladies of the Night" 

      Miami International Orchid Show – 2007 Orchid Photography Contest,

      In- Situ Category

First Place: "Foxtail"

      Miami International Orchid Show – 2007 Orchid Photography Contest,

      Fantasy Category

Third Place: “Foxtail”

      World Orchid Conference  - 2008 Photography Contest,

      Digital Art Category

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Exhibitions

Group Exhibition: Miami International Orchid Show,

      February 2006

Group Exhibition: Miami International Orchid Show,

      February 2007

Group Exhibition: World Orchid Conference, Miami, Florida

      January 2008

Solo Exhibition: "A Photography Portfolio"

    Jan 2009 to Present

Group Exhibition: Miami International Orchid Show,

      February 2009

Solo Exhibition: "The Art of the Orchid"

    Harry P. Leu Botanical Gardens, Orlando, Florida

      February 11 to March 7, 2009

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Instructional Experience

Workshop: "Floral Photography: Pictures to Be Proud Of"

      Tampa Orchid Society, Tampa, Florida – June 2008

    American Orchid Society, Deerfield Beach, Florida – February 2009

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Activities / Current Projects

"Ruination: An Exploration of Edifice"

Mankind leaves things behind.  We change our environment to fit ourselves.  This project explores through black & white imagery the modern archaeology of our existence.  (Ongoing: Since 2007)

Awards Photography – The American Orchid Society

I have actively pursued the production of very accurate documentary photographs of flowers that have received awards from the American Orchid System Judging Program.  These images are archived for future reference by the AOS, and provide the only pictorial record of the flower at the time of awarding.   (Ongoing: Since 2007)

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