Category Archives: Inspiration

The Everyday Life of a Working Artist: Day 1

Life as Art. (2017) I’ve enjoyed painting birds so much lately that I decided June is bird month. This means all of my June paintings are birds, and I’ll be creating a free class on painting birds! Sign up for the newsletter at the bottom of this post to be notified when the tutorials are released.

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I’m trying to think of the right words to remember this day by. Honestly, it feels like any other summer day. I haven’t worked summers in 6 years. So being at home, spending my time painting, isn’t so unusual this time of year. But this particular summer day is a bit different. It’s special. And I want to be able to look back one day and remember the details.

In case you haven’t heard, here’s the exciting news: I left my teaching position to follow my passions. And today, my friends, is DAY 1. DAY 1 of chasing my dreams, of working in my business full-time, of making a go of this.

If you’ve read my blog before, you know I’m working to build an art and yoga business. A tiny, one-woman shop that empowers women to take better care of themselves through creativity.

Self-care is one of those things that gets a lot of press. People talk a lot about it. Some love it and some hate it, and few people actually do it. I want to change that. And I want to impact the way we see self-care. It’s so much more diverse than the credit it gets. Sure, sometimes it’s pedicures and bubble baths. But what if you don’t like those things? Or what if those things don’t actually nurture you? Then what?

And so I’m working to get my message to the people that need to hear it. And I’m teaching art. And I’m teaching yoga. And I’m offering different ways for you to care for your body, mind, and soul.

But I’m going to save those details for another post. Because this one is simply to say: I’ve started.

It’s day 1. It’s a bit surreal.

I’m nervous. Scared. Ridiculous amounts of excited. Slightly overwhelmed. I’m feeling ALL the feels. And I’m here, and I’m doing it, and that right there is just a little crazy to me!

I hope you’ll join me and consider how it is you’re taking care of yourself. I hope you’ll join in on some of the painting tutorials and maybe try something new. I hope you’ll consider spending a bit more time honoring your body and what it’s capable of (because, believe me, it’s capable of so much more than you think).

I’ll be here on the blog twice a month. In the weeks in between, I’ll be sending newsletters to my subscribers. My email list will be the first to receive news about retreats, in-person workshops, and online classes. They’ll also get access to free art classes and yoga practices as they’re released (so please sign up below — I want you to get these too!). I hope to bring a sense of community to this little corner of the internet, a place where we can support each other in taking time for ourselves and nurturing our creativity.

As always, thank you for taking the time to be here. Namaste, friends.

xo,

Heather Rae

 

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Weekly Musings

Some days, making the move to live a creative life is a challenge.

Other days, it feels like the most exciting thing imaginable. I get huge bursts of energy and also moments of total freak-out.

Today I feel on top of the world.

Though, if I’m being honest, the past week or so has felt very stressful. I’ve spent too much time worrying about the future and not enough time taking the steps needed to build this tiny empire.

It ebbs and flows really. 

I try to remind myself these ebbs and flows are natural.

Everything in life has ups and downs. This part of my life is new, and that’s the only reason it feels a bit awkward when I’m on the roller coaster.

Like with my yoga practice.

I practice five days a week, Monday through Friday. But of course there are weeks that schedule doesn’t work.

Sometimes a total lack of sleep has me pressing the snooze button one too many times. Sometimes I get sick. Sometimes I get distracted by other random crap in the morning, and then my practice doesn’t happen that day. But do I get discouraged and throw in the towel? Say eff it all, and never practice again? Of course not. I just skip that day and start again the next day, Monday through Friday, as I always do.

And so that’s how I’m trying to look at starting my art business.

Some days it will all feel perfect and easy. Those days are awesome, and with a little luck and intention, I’ll cherish them. Other days, I feel stuck in the mud and can’t get myself to do the work because it all feels hopeless. Those days straight up suck. But I’m working to just let the day pass and start again the next day. No beating myself up about it.

No added stress. Just allowing what will be…to be.

xo,

Heather Rae

p.s. The weather in Vegas has been stunning the past week! Last weekend we headed out to the Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge. Juniper is a water dog through and through. There’s no keeping that girl out of the water! She loved every minute of soaking up the sunshine. And Charlotte ran through every bush she possibly could. The girl is a hunter, no doubt about it. Always looking for little creatures in the bushes. She never actually gets them. But for her, it’s all about the chase. ūüėČ

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Inspiration | Create Abundance

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Whew! I just finished a bit of a marathon over here. No running involved! ūüėČ

As you know, my theme for the year is CREATE. Within my theme, I chose five areas to focus on. Here’s what they are: create art, create joy, create vitality, create abundance, and create community.

I spend time every week checking in and thinking about these things. Is there an area I’ve been ignoring that requires attention? What’s going well? What’s not going so well? It’s all about being deliberate. It’s about paying attention and honoring my values.¬†

So today I realized I need to focus on creating abundance. Last year I focused on self-care, and some of that self-care was to let myself relax about my budgeting. I’ve always been a bit uptight about money, and for as long as I can remember, I’ve very carefully budgeted down to my very last penny. That was often a great thing — those habits allowed me to buy a house and take amazing trips on a rather tiny teacher’s salary. But in the midst of all that self-care, I realized I needed to relax a bit. I needed to buy a new car, and I wanted to take some art classes and buy supplies. I wanted an upgraded camera system. I wanted to spoil myself a little. It was awesome. And it was WORTH IT.

BUT. Now that 2015’s over, and I’ve been relaxed about the cash-flow for a while, I also realize my squeaky-clean budgeting allowed me to do fucking awesome things. And I’ve got some serious cash-needy goals this year (yoga teacher training in the south of Spain, for one!). Plus, I want to build my emergency fund and simply get my spending back to a place I feel empowered by.

What does this mean? It means I just spent the afternoon and evening evaluating my budget and getting real. I took a hard look at what I’m spending money on (and I plan to continue this careful tracking for a while), and I asked myself some tough questions. Mind you, it really isn’t all about spending less (some was, but truthfully, very little). It was mostly about being realistic. I can sometimes have lofty goals about how little I should spend in a certain category. But when I look at my spending and I’m honest about what matters to me, sometimes that means increasing the budget in that category. Sometimes it’s okay to say that I should spend more (or that maybe I already am).¬†I don’t want budgeting and managing my finances to feel like a punishment. It’s not about that at all. It’s about empowerment. It’s about making decisions regarding¬†what’s important to me and what’s not. What do I want to see my money spent on, and what would I rather not spend money on?

I just finished putting together my money plans for the year, and it feels good. There will be some tweaking as I continue to follow my spending habits over the next few weeks. But I feel like I have a good handle on it. I feel like I know what I need (and want) to do, and I feel relieved to not be thinking about it anymore!

So if there’s anything¬†in your life you’ve been wanting to do but putting off because it’s no fun, maybe now is the perfect time to get it done. Chances are, you’ll feel pretty damn good when that thing is out of the way. I know I do!

xo

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Creativity Sparks | Vision Board and Plans for 2016

The last two weeks I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about 2016. In my other life, I’m a high school teacher, and I’m fortunate to have two weeks off for winter break. It’s my favorite time to really¬†ponder what went well in the previous year and what I would like to do in the coming year. It’s when I do a lot of writing, a little meditating, a lot of yoga, and a good amount of dreaming.

I make my vision board. I pick a theme for the coming year. It’s a lot of self-care. It’s a lot of focus and thought on what I can do to be even more authentic, even more me.¬†

My theme for 2016 came to me very naturally this year. I didn’t have to work too hard at it. I just knew it was right.

CREATE.

Yes, yes, YES. I want to create the most beautiful year. I want to create art. Lots and lots of art. And I don’t want to lose track of that. At the end of the year I want to look back and see a big body of work. I want to see how my techniques have grown. I want to develop a habit of painting or¬†sketching or¬†collaging every day, even if simply for a small bit of time. Why every day? Because it’s truly like meditation for me. It’s the one time during the day that I think of nothing else. My thoughts flow in and flow out, but I don’t much notice them, as my mind is 100%, fully focused. I lose track of time. I feel joy. For real. I paint, and I feel joy. And I think that’s about the most beautiful thing there is. And so I’m committing to further cultivating this most beautiful habit. I’m making a small commitment of 15 minutes a day. Most days, I’m sure I’ll do more, as most days, I’ll want to. But on the¬†days I don’t have time, even 15 minutes coloring in bed counts. I have plans to create a 100 paintings project (I’ll be sharing plans in the next month). And I have plans to start recording my process as I create (so I can share!). But the main point is to simply create. And if I do that, I will be totally and completely happy.

Create is also about creating vitality. I want to feel strong, active, and full of energy. I have two big goals in this area (and a couple small ones). First, I plan to complete yoga teacher training. I’ve been researching and plans are in the works. I’ll keep you up to date with my plans on this! Second, I plan to return to being an at-home vegetarian. I call it “at-home” because my goal is to change my eating habits at home by the end of the year. Maybe one day I’ll convert to being fully vegetarian, but for now, I’m not holding myself responsible for eating vegetarian when I’m at sit down restaurants or other people’s houses. At home, I want my eating habits to focus on plant based, whole foods. I did this for about two years a while back, and I really enjoyed it. And lately I’ve felt a strong pull to return to those eating habits. I just feel better when I eat that way, and feeling vital and healthy is such a strong value of mine. A small goal I have in this area is to honor my rest days. Last year I pushed and pushed. I did yoga seven days a week. I got stronger and more flexible, but I also injured myself several times. Around October, I realized it might be a good idea to back off. So I did. And I haven’t had an injury since. I can’t guarantee incorporating rest days is the reason, but they feel good. So I’m continuing this plan. My rest days are Saturday and Sunday, and I fully intend to honor them. No yoga. No workouts. Sure, I may go for a hike or a walk. I enjoy being active. But even if I sit around all day, I’m not feeling bad about it. I’m counting it as recuperation for my body. I work hard. I should rest hard too. ūüėČ

There are a few other things on my list to focus on, but those are the main ones. I hope to look back at the end of 2016 and feel accomplished. I hope to feel I’ve continued to develop healthy habits that keep my mind strong and my body strong. I hope to create a beautiful year.

And in case you’re curious about my vision board, here it is. I LOVE having a visual representation of my goals and plans for the year. I hang it above my art desk and see it every day. It reminds me of what I was hoping for at the beginning of the year and allows me to consider how well those hopes and plans align with my currents wants and needs. I’ve found it very helpful, and I encourage you to make one of your own if you’re at all curious about the process.

xo

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Creativity Sparks | Creative Space | A Creative Haven

 

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I’ve been doing a little soul searching. Really digging deep. Thinking about how I can be more deliberate with my life.

In general, I’m pretty successful with that as it is. I dream, scheme, and plan. I make intentional choices about my time. I go big, and I push myself to take bold steps and be brave.¬†But¬†I figure a little extra soul searching can’t hurt anything, right? Right.

From all this thinking, here’s something I’ve come up with: I want to bring more of myself into this site.

You see, I have another site called In Search of Squid. I adore that site. It was truly a living document of my life as I struggled to find what it was that I loved, the things that would make my life meaningful and worthwhile. I wrote on that site for years about my journey. And then one day, I found that I outgrew it. Not in a bad way, mind you. More in a…wow, I’ve figured out what I love, I’m no longer searching…kind of way. And so In Search of Squid didn’t really fit me anymore. Because — Squid Found.

Fast forward to today. I started this new site a little over a year ago. Initially, it was meant to document my journey as a photographer. But then I sort of missed the personal aspect that was In Search of Squid. I missed telling stories.

Thus, as my journey has grown, so has my purpose for this site.

I’ve struggled a bit with exactly how I should post here. What do I write about? Do I only write about photography? Do I include the personal stuff? Do I expand to include my passion for yoga?

I haven’t known what to do, so I’ve continued posting, and I’ve continued pondering.

And in the last couple of days, it hit me. My life, my passion — it’s all about living a creative life, doing what I¬†love, and being intentional with those choices. And there it is, exactly what this site should be. Sometimes, yes, it’s all about photography. But sometimes it’s about so much more than that. And I want to share that too.

It’s a continuation of my journey. It’s personal, and it’s me. It’s a creative haven for my¬†work, for everything that I love. It’s my stories. It’s a way for me to connect with my online soul sisters, my in real life friends, and the myriad of other awesome creative women that somehow find themselves in my little corner of the internet. It’s my place to share art and photography and yoga and adventure. It’s an honest look at the beauty that is this life of mine.

So yeah. That’s a peek into what I’ve been thinking. And I thought I’d share.

Here’s another tidbit, in case you don’t know: since setting up¬†the art room, I have been full-on OBSESSED with creating. I am absolutely in love with painting. I can’t remember the last time I felt this way. It’s almost surreal. So while the iron is hot, I’m totally jumping on this bandwagon and taking it as far as it’s willing to take me. I hope you’ll join me for this journey too!

Until next time, my friends, sending love and light.

xo

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Creativity Sparks | Creating An Inspiration Board

I’ve been digging¬†the idea of inspiration boards lately. Small reminders clipped to bulletin boards, hung on the refrigerator, adorning the desktop of my computer. These inspiration boards remind me of projects I plan to complete, creative endeavors I’d like to try, photography styles that call to me. They bring me inspiration on days I’m feeling “bleh.” They remind of what’s calling me, of the whispers speaking to my heart.

This particular inspiration board (below) lives on my computer desktop. It’s a collection of photos that spoke to me at the time I created it (they still do). It doesn’t have one particular theme like many of my other inspiration boards. Rather, it’s a collection of photos that speak to me in a I wish I had created these sort of way. But not in a jealous way. Not in a way that makes me feel less than or not as good as. Somehow this collection simply reminds me of techniques I’d like to try, portraits I’d like to take, food styling I’d like to create. It reminds me to play with light. Capture it. Chase the sun. (You can find the source of theses photos on this Pinterest board.)

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Looking at these photos does exactly what was intended. Looking at these photos inspires my creativity.

I have currently have two new¬†inspiration boards in the works — one that focuses on capturing stunning, creative landscapes and adventure photos — and one that focuses on creating vibrant works of acrylic art. I can’t wait to share those with you!

Each time I’m working on a big project or hoping for some inspiration to start/brainstorm a new project, I create an inspiration board (sometimes called a mood board).

I seek out the work of some of my favorite, most inspiring artists, I stroll through Pinterest, I allow myself a bit of time to bounce around online and on Instagram. I create a Pinterest board for that particular project and collect images until I feel satiated, until I feel full with inspiration and ideas. And then I use PicMonkey to create a collage of the images I choose. Sure, you could make your collage in Lightroom or Photoshop, but I find PicMonkey is simple and easy and does just what I need with no added thought required (I’m not trying to give myself homework here; I’m trying to do something fun).

Sometimes my inspiration board focuses on a certain subject, like food photography. Sometimes the focus is a theme color, like blues and grays. Sometimes it’s even a texture (I’ve been known to seek out photos that remind me of words like “soft” or “cozy”).

Once I have the board together, I decide on where and how I want to see it. I have a huge bulletin board hanging above the desk in my art room that I love hanging inspiration boards on. It’s the perfect spot — I see it every day. If I choose to hang the board somewhere, I send it to the local Office Max to be printed in color on thick, high quality paper. Other times I prefer to keep the board digital. In which case, I might save it as my desktop wallpaper or save a copy of it to the “photos” folder on my phone. It all depends where I think I’ll see it most and where I think it’ll be most effective.

One other idea is to create an inspiration board of favorite photos you took yourself. On days when I need reminding of what I’m capable of creating, I look at this board. It reminds me that I have, in fact, developed a signature style. It reminds me that I am creative. That I am capable. That I do great work.

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So. I share all this in case you’re in need of some daily inspiration. Perhaps an inspiration board, printed and placed in the perfect space in your home or office, is just what you need! If so, I highly encourage taking the time to put one together! It might provide just the daily inspiration you’re seeking.

xo

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Creativity Sparks | Creative Space | My Art Room

I’ve been getting requests to show pictures of the updated art room.¬†And I’ve got to tell you — this is my new favorite space in the house! Ok, I Actually think my dining area still wins because everything about it screams “Heather.” But then, everything about this room screams my name too. It’s so hard to choose! But really, I just love it because I want to spend time in here. Because even though the TV is smaller, I don’t really care, and I’d rather watch TV in here while editing in my newly dubbed “editing chair” or painting in my little paint area.

What I love about it most is that all of my art supplies are out. I don’t have to go searching for them. I don’t have to pull things out and put them away when I’m done. I just leave it all out. This little fact makes it so easy to start a creative project on a whim. And that is precisely what I wanted – a perfect little space for inspiration and projects. A work room. A painting space. A brainstorming space. An editing space.

Ok. Now I’ll stop talking about it and show you pictures! Enjoy, my friends.

xo

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Creativity Sparks | Three Loves: Photography, Yoga, and Painting

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(photo taken on a recent trip to Zion National Park)

I mentioned a few weeks back that in my other life I’m a high school science teacher. Yesterday was the first day back to work after summer break, and I’ve got to tell you, it was haaaard. Mostly because my school-year life is so drastically different from my non-school-year life. And what I mean by that is…I get up at 4:30am. Yuck. Yes, let’s just say that together — YUCK.

I wake up that early for a couple of reasons, but let’s be honest, one of the biggest reasons is because I’m a slow poke. I like to eat breakfast while checking emails and scanning Facebook. I like to clean up the house in the morning. And I always work out in the morning. You see, I have to get my yoga in or I’ll be a sad sack all day. And no one wants a sad sack at work.

The beginning of the school year always makes me start to think of the future and my plans. My plans for teaching and my plans for my photography business. How does it all fit together? How long will it all fit together? What do I want to accomplish this year in my photography business? What to I want to change or adjust?

Some people ask themselves these questions at the end of a fiscal year or at the end of the calendar year. But I can’t help it. I think in school years. My year begins and ends in August.

Anyhow, I’ve been toying around with these questions, and I thought I’d share some of my thoughts with you. You see, my vision for my photography business has drastically changed in the past year or so. My focus used to be on private clients — portraits. I wanted to focus the majority of my work on portraits. Because I do love portraits. And styled sessions. And senior sessions. And headshots. I’ve had a lovely time doing this work.

But I’ve noticed something — my teaching side is calling me. I love to share my experiences. I love to show people what I know and help them get to where they want to be. I really get a kick out of seeing another person’s work transform because of something I’ve helped them learn or inspired them to do. It’s an awesome feeling.

And so I’m playing around with the idea of incorporating teaching into my photography work.

I don’t know exactly what my business model will look like yet. I’m working on that. The ideas are too big and too broad at this point to say for sure. But here are some of my ideas.

First, diversify. I’m a bit of a renaissance woman. I like to do a little bit of everything. And when I do just one thing for too long, I get bored. So why force myself to do just one thing? Instead, do different things. Who says you can’t do several things and do several things well? I say you can. So why not? I’m looking into selling select travel prints. I’m checking out¬†what it would take to develop an online course. I’m considering the possibility of teaching in-person workshops and hosting creative retreats. I’m learning about licensing. I learning about self-publishing e-books and traditional publishing. I’m brainstorming and outlining and creating. And I’ve got to tell you, I’m stoked!

Second, incorporate yoga. As you know, I started adding yoga to the website a couple months back. Yoga drives me. It keeps me sane. It sparks my creativity and gets me in the zone. It quiets my mind and enhances my thought process. It does so much for my life, my creativity, and my photography. I want to share that with you and help you start your own yoga practice. I believe in this so much, I’ve decided to get certified as a yoga teacher. I’m looking into yoga teacher trainings, and I’m planning to join a training probably this coming winter or spring. In part, I’m doing this because I simply want to deepen my understanding of yoga and deepen my own yoga practice. It’s part selfish. But it’s also about feeling more confident in sharing that love of yoga with you.

Third, share my paintings.¬†This is totally new. Few of you likely know my love of painting. Some years I paint very little, and other years, I paint a lot. But I’ve learned something — the more creative work I do, regardless of the type of work, the more creative my photography becomes. It’s a bit of a snowball effect. I once received a great piece of advice: when I’m in a creative rut with my photography I should step away from it for a bit and do something creative that is totally different. Paint, draw, write, whatever inspires me at that moment. This advice has been crucial to my growth and confidence as a photographer. Stepping away from my camera and into my paint world refuels me. It helps me see the world differently, see colors differently. And before you know it, I’m off with my camera, working on a totally new, inspired project.¬†It started as a self-care ritual and has become a crucial way to avoid burnout. And I want to share that part of my life with you. Perhaps it would spark something in you that helps you avoid burnout too.

So that’s what I’m thinking about. Those are some of the ideas I’m tossing around. I’m excited! And I’m particularly excited to share this part of the journey with you. I don’t know exactly where it’s going to lead. But I do know it’s going to be somewhere awesome!

xo

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Creativity Sparks | Escaping Ruts & 5 Things To Consider For A Photo Walk

I’m going to tell you something I hate and then something I love. Here’s what I hate: I hate when I feel stuck in a creative rut.¬†I hate when all my photographs¬†start to feel “the same.” It’s an icky feeling, isn’t it? You find yourself using the same go-to poses and the same perfect backgrounds and the same styled set-ups. Same, same, same.

I would really love a fairy to sprinkle pixie dust on my head that makes my creativity flow from now until eternity. No ruts. No being stuck. No same, same.

But that freaking fairy is nowhere in sight.

However, here’s what I love: taking a day trip for the simple purpose of doing a photo walk.¬†I love to choose a spot where I’ve never done a photo walk before. Or a spot I have done but that I have a totally new¬†idea for. I enjoy putting myself in a creative situation that is different from the usual and pushing my creative boundaries. This is such a great way to get out of those ruts!

When you put yourself in a new situation and try out different styles of photography, you’re pushing your boundaries. You’re forcing yourself to get creative, to see things differently. You can’t get stuck because you’ve never done it before.

For instance, I took these photos on a photo walk I did while visiting one of my favorite hiking areas in Las Vegas — Red Rock Canyon.

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Sure, I’ve been to Red Rock before (I ADORE it!). But I’ve never gone for the purpose of taking photos that tell the story of my walk.

I wanted to make a photo collage that gave the observer an idea of what my day was like. I wanted the observer to see the beauty in the desert the way I see it — a mix of landscape photos and detail photos. I wanted to emphasize the unique way the light hits the canyon and the unique wildflowers blooming in early summer. I also wanted to edit the pictures in a slightly different way than my norm.

I made a plan, I had a purpose, and I completed a photo project.

When you’re stuck in a rut, it feels good to complete a small project that is totally different from your every day work. And it helps you to see things differently. This way, when you go back to that every day work, you have a fresh perspective!

Here are a few things you may want to consider when planning your photo walk:

  1. Where do you want to go? Perhaps there’s a spot in your city you’ve always wanted to visit, but you haven’t. Maybe you have a favorite street full of shops you adore wandering by. Or a brilliant area for people watching. Or a nature area that is absolutely peaceful. Maybe you have a favorite ice cream shop, and you want to photograph the experience of getting ice cream there (actually, this totally gives me an idea…). It could be anything!
  2. Would you prefer the solitude of being alone, or do you want to plan the outing with a friend? For me, it depends on my mood. Some days, the last thing in the world I want is to photograph with someone beside me. I want the option to spend hours photographing one spot until I get it just right. Or I want to get up to watch the sunrise and take photos in that perfect morning light (and I know few people that would find that appealing). But other days I want to chat and tell stories and take pictures along the way. I often find my photos turn out very different when I have someone with me as opposed to being alone. This is good. Different is good. So put some thought into your preference.
  3. Do you want to tell a story with your photos? If so, what story do you want to tell? Perhaps there are color schemes or objects or people you would like to showcase throughout. Perhaps there is a feeling or an idea you would like to convey. Maybe you want a certain word or phrase to come to mind when people look at your photos — things like sweet summertime, comfort, affection, etc. Put some thought into this. When you’re out taking the photos, if you get stuck, come back to your purpose — what story do you want to tell? — and you’ll soon find yourself unstuck.
  4. What do you need for your photo walk? Depending on where you’re heading, the list of needs could be entirely different. Plan to be out all day hiking? Pack your backpack, a sweater, lunch, water, etc. Plan to have lunch at a favorite outdoor cafe and then walk along the street? Wear comfortable walking shoes and bring a camera bag. Will you have access to snacks or should you bring them? Do you want to challenge yourself with one lens or do you want options? Think about these things, and make a list the night before you head out. This way you can quickly scan your list before leaving to make sure you have everything, and you’re off quickly!
  5. When are you going? Don’t just sit around making plans you never act on. Pick a date, put it in your calendar, and stick to it! You’ll be so glad you did.

The next time you find your creativity waning, plan an outing and break free from your norm.

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On Creative Community, Sharing My Process, And Introducing Yoga

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I’ve been working on all kinds of projects behind the scenes over here. And brainstorming. And I’m SO excited to tell you a bit about it!

Traditionally, this blog has housed only my photography. But there’s so much that goes into creating beautiful photos. And I want to share my process with you.

You see, I’m a teacher at heart. As a matter of fact, in my other life, I am a teacher. Did you know that? I’m a high school science teacher. It’s funny because teaching was not something I planned, rather something that just sort of happened, and, it turns out, I’m pretty damn good at it. I love teaching.¬†I love my students. I love when a student gets excited about something I showed him/her how to do.

And I want to bring my love of teaching into my life as a photographer. I want to share with you how I create the images I create. I want to share with you ideas for spurring creativity and sparking your imagination. I want to share, and help, and maybe even inspire you. Through teaching, I want to bring together a community of creatives that support each other.

Because what could be better than a community of like-minded women, sharing with and helping one another?

Some of my dearest friendships started through blogging, social media, and the like. It’s such a beautiful thing when your passions and your friendships collide.

I live in Las Vegas, NV. Anyone who lives or has lived here can tell you that it’s not the most community oriented city. Don’t get me wrong — I love it (and I’ll tell you the many reasons I love this city in a future post), but finding community out here can be tricky. The city is pretty transient, and the industries are mostly built around hospitality and casinos. All of this is just fine. But when you’re seeking out a community of artists, creative souls, and creative entrepreneurs, it can be sort of difficult.

So I thought on it, and I realized — if the community I want to be a part of doesn’t already exist, why don’t I just create it?! So that’s what I’m setting out to do. I’m setting out to make this blog and website a hub for creative souls — photographers and artists and yogis.

Yes, you read that right. I added yogis to the mix too! Why? Because I’m a total yogi. Do you recall my previous post in which I talk about being a bonafide yoga addict? I start every single day with yoga, and I don’t think for a moment I would be the photographer, teacher, or creative soul that I am if I didn’t start my days this way. It helps to release stress, challenges my body and mind, and gets my creative juices flowing. So, yes, I’m going to bring yoga into the mix. I’m going to share with you what I love about it and why it’s such an important part of my creative process. I’m going to share poses and pictures and flows.

Maybe you do yoga too. Maybe you don’t but you’ve always wanted to try. Maybe my yoga posts will inspire you. And perhaps you’ll find that yoga spurs your creativity too.

So there’s a little peak into my brainstorming these days: creating community for creative souls, sharing my photography process, and bringing yoga into the mix! I’m excited. And I can’t wait to get this party started!

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