30 April 2011

What makes your heart beat?

This past weekend I spent alot of time with Liz Frandsen (her site)

She shot my graduation photos (here)

And we have known each other for a bit, but because of school,

I haven't been able to play with other photographers in the way

I would have liked.

There are many reasons, Liz and I connect, but the one

I want to share with you is the following:

Liz is a lover to both her photography and her husband.

When the passion of those two combined... the following happens:

Click here

So one of the many common interest is helping clients portray who they are:

The following couple met in Japan when they were young.

Both of their father's served LDS missions in Japan and later re located with their families.

After a time, both families moved away... When Chris turned 19, he was called to serve

his mission in Japan.

After his mission, both families moved to Layton, UT, Where Cass and Chris

dated, loved blossomed and were married.

A huge connection and commonality they share in their marriage is

their love for Japan.

So it only makes sense to incorporate this into their shoot.

Who are you? What makes your heart beat?

Let's figure it out...document it.. and keep the memories near.

If you are already married.... and loved this video....message me!

26 April 2011



23 April 2011

Pit Fall Number one

Something I learned at college:

 Don't overload with one professor. It's ever so tempting to take four or five courses with one professor, if you like him or her and are getting good grades in his or her courses it may make sense. But there's a pitfall: Exposure to too few points of view might stifle your development in the field. 

CHECK! That happened to me in one area...so I share to help others avoid pitfalls. 

In any case, I'm not a genius... but I think alot.

18 April 2011

Mourning As A Memory

Many of you haven’t been able to see my work, so this post is for you. But lets start with a little background:

Josh always loved my hair cut short. After he passed away, I got a nice haircut, spoke at his funeral, and have since grieved through his loss by continually changing my hair. 

A hairdresser contacted me through Facebook and offer to trade services, I would photograph her wedding and she would do my hair before, during and after the time she got married. I asked her when she was getting married. And her response was: “I don’t even have a boyfriend.”
So the trade was on, and since then she has helped me try to find out who I am without Josh here. 

The avenues of identity have been traveled through trendy colors, styles and new techniques the industry of hair uses to enhance what they believe to be beauty. She gave me an edgy haircut and color. It became popular to a couple guys I know, romantic compliments were given to me. They were wrapped around this aesthetic change, and I hate the fact that it took a vibrant red hairdo to get attention. I became obsessed and compulsive about my identity pertaining to hair.  Naturally, I began to study it in the scriptures and on the Internet and I started to talk to everyone about how they felt about their hair.

Themes of mourning, grief, loss and memory are portrayed. 

Through the medium of hair, I incorporate genealogical and religious references to blur the lines between identity and identity pertaining to hair. 

Historically, Mormon women believed their crowning glory was their hair. The cutting a strand of their hair evoked a memory, even a gift of departing. 

As a form of mourning, a lock of hair would be cut and created into a memorial artifact as it was placed inside a belt buckle or brooch. 

The transformation has begun, from loss to knowing.

When the strands and bundles of hair are given to me, I collect the stories. 

As I photograph the hair, I ponder upon the associated experiences. I then seek to mediate the stories and emotions. Through this process, a form of healing emerges.
 For me, this process has become revelatory. 

I habitually examine and evaluate the connection I am making between hair and identity, story and person. 

As I strive to restore, to resurrect the buried experience, mourning has become the memory.

I used the quilt to house my emotions. The hair squares represent compartments and moments of experienced grief. 

The two photos above have the following conversation attached to them:

Me: Why do you keep your hair?
Kent: It reminds me of what I used to be able to do.
I was invincible then.

The words are feelings and phrases that reoccur in my mind. 

So as I documented them, they became something new.

(photo above) This piece of hair is only bangs, She has only cut her hair three times.
She was forced to keep it long as a child and ironically, she keeps it long now,as 
it reminds her of her beauty experienced as a child.

It seems we search for who we might be and we associate
ourselves with our hair,

This is my own attempt to create a symbol of belonging and a source of solace. Through the documentation of hair, I resurrect the memory and experiences I have had, associated with mourning.

A video to compile it all:

11 April 2011


To do and Be

Lynn G Robbins

08 April 2011

06 April 2011

When I knew I needed to give.

When I was 11. I bought my best friend some balloons for her birthday.

I thought alot about what I could give her.

I wanted her to feel amazing and special.

I believe I spent my own money.

I delivered it.

At which point, she began to suck the helium out of the balloon.

I stood there as she sang and laughed in high pitch tones.

She deflated my sincerity and gift.

I told her off with my quick tongue, slammed the door and left.

Her mom called my dad. And I walked to her house with my dad.

He made me apology.

I wondered why.

I have always adored my father, 

but on this day, I hated my dad's decision to do that.

Later that night, he explained to me:

"When you give a gift to someone, its not yours anymore, if it's truly a gift, then it is must to be given, it is essentially that, given away."

If we are a giver, the choice to give is always,

Always the right one.

Who we give to and
When and
How we give is the emotional decision we make. It leaves us vulnerable, because we don’t know how they will receive it. or what they will do with it...

They may deflate it.


Elder Hales revisits this idea:

full article here

And in the moment, we will understand the grief and pain that encompasses the atonement.
To all those that reject that gift, that ultimate gift of giving and growth, miss opportunity to accept.
When we are ourselves don’t accept the giver or the gifts accompanied with the giver, we are the losers.
The Savior’s willingness to sacrifice his life, could never have been dependent on the fact that it would take thousands of years for people to appreciate and accept the gift, while all along the way, people reject it.

The principle of giving and receiving enables us to be more of who we should be. I feel blessed my father taught me something so young... I'm still learning from it.

Love you Dad, Happy Birthday

01 April 2011

The Almost Last Almost Love Almost Letter

Dear Josh,
It's 5 a.m.
It's been over a year now.
I have already slumbered my mandatory 5 hours of sleep for the night.
But now, I can't sleep...plus
I wanted to tell you a couple things.
I've been meaning to..
I wanted to write you, you know,

document it down, instead of my normal method of
blurting out words and emotions
into thick dark muted air.

Ever since you left the earth, my words to you have been
very selective, while my actual reality is swallowed up
by thoughts and memories of you.

you have always created memories with me.
Still, you continue to create memories for me
since you left the earth. you already know this. but
for this purpose I write
to confirm to the world that there is more
to the essence we declare as

I love you for that.

So remember how you used to drive me around
 to take photos when I began my photo program at
One particular memory comes to mind when we took night shots of real things
using artificial light, the plants, foliage and rocks..which in turn made our real things like artificial.
We used the jeep to
add extra fake light.
And remember that was the same night,
 I rolled my own film,
one hundred shots in a reel,
only to realize later, how in the world was i going to develop that myself.

Josh, I have yet to develop it.

It's a little way I'm preserving that night.

I recently had my graduation photos taken.

The photographer's name is Liz. 
I have known her for two years, and aside from our collaborations
and me assisting her,
I consider her a friend.
She has an ability,
a gift that she shares to beautify the world,
and me on this particular morning.
(rachel did the hair &makeup)

The photo shoot began
on a railroad track....
without any rails.

And once again the irony sinks in, 
you see,
Rail road tracks are laid on ballast, which are crushed stones,
(Symbolically) these rocks are:
 they offer
flexibility to the rails, as the train moves,
 the load of both tracks is distributed evenly.

These rocks have sharp edges to
help interlock with each other.
becoming a unified element.
I lay in place of the rails
I can only imagine that this spot had life once,
the train whistle blew in this neighborhood once.

It was present.

but its silent now
 I hear the wind better.
ironically, I hear everything better

except your voice.
As for now, this path is simply a
waiting ground.

And on this day, it also become a special place.

Liz is a connective person and is able to evoke emotions from within.
As she is directing the shoot, she says something
on along the lines of:
"Look up to the sky, smile at your boyfriends."

I look up
I wonder if he is looking back,
The sun is shinning
but partly covered.
 The clouds act as a veil, 
for more than the sun.
and my eyes slightly water.
I wonder what this face looked like through a lens

I feel a groan in my stomach that tells my face its still okay
to smile.
part of me wants to cry and the other part of me just blurts out
"Hi, Josh."

This isn't odd or uncomfortable to do in front of Liz, for she knows a bit about me.

Liz gets closer to me and says something in just the exact way I needed to hear it.

"Jenny, you can still love him.
He just can't be your husband."

And the light becomes more real, she is right.
Its okay to love him, and be loved by him.
In that moment I feel my heart grow a little.

Could it be, that is all I need is a little push,
someone to remind me that
great things do await me.

Thank you Liz, for bringing out my inner beauty
and helping my new heart grow.

a new beat...

Could it be this heart could beat :
oh the newness of this..