Saturday, February 27, 2010

hello front range!

here are some things to share with you.

I love being home.
I love seeing familiar faces around me and the smell of my house when I walk in after being gone for a long time. I love that my mom cooks for me and the barter system is hugs. My brother and I decided to go on a mini photo adventure out in a field behind our house. When you walk on top of a hill, you can see all of my town in front of you, lit up and showing you suburbia. Robbie and I laughed until our stomachs hurt about inside jokes and things we remembered about being kids.

I've been frustrated lately.
I have been feeling really let down by a couple of my main people lately. Driving the 3 hours home, I started to worry that it might be me letting them down instead. Whichever one it is, I don't want it to happen anymore. Re-evaluating roots is never a good feeling task, but a necessary one. When you re-evaluate, don't completely take those people out of your life, only if they are doing you more harm than good, but re-prioritize those branches and make sure you are one of the pieces of their core as well.
I'm scared.
We are sending the grants off on March 1st. It is a terrifying feeling, to let all your hopes and dreams fall into someone else's arms. All I am hoping for is that they recognize how much hard work and dedication we have and will be putting into this project.
Being vulnerable is also a scary feeling. It is one that everyone feels but yet, everyone tries to hide it. Why? Because we don't want to be vulnerable. It's an endless circle of the fear and the feeling chasing each other. So I have been trying to deal with it. It has to be a conscious effort, to let myself feel vulnerable and stop wincing, waiting around for the consequences. It turns out, being vulnerable doesn't always result in getting hurt.

give yourself completely.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

my life

My life is tea cups with rings in the bottom of what used to be, scattered around my room because I eat every meal with my dog in my bed instead of at a table.
My life is a quick pot of coffee, made too late in the day and consumed too quickly.
My life is 4 meetings in a day, all for the same project that despite 6 months of work, may or may not happen.
My life is my puppy forgiving me for too much time spent on my computer editing, and not enough time spent playing tug-of-war.
My life is wine bottles in the window sill because I like how they look when their empty.
My life is a huge smile and hug from people I love telling me that I'll make it.
My life is a crowd of people; friends, friends of friends, and family on the sidelines, holding my hand and listening to my stories.
My life is a fence that continues for miles and miles and a mason jar with a single white and yellow flower.
My life is a field of grass, looking like a sea when it blows in the wind.
My life is the amount of trash and stuff in my car.
My life is my friends that let me sleep there for the night when I drift and am transient.
My life is my room, with orange walls; my home base, littered with camera equipment and odds and ends of props from various shoots.
My life is a load of laundry of all my favorite clothes that has been collecting over the course of a month that I am finally making myself do.
My life is hundreds of thousands of still frames, trying to capture my wild heart and ideas.

My heart is not collecting dust.

I went to the first half of the Banff Mountain Film Festival tonight. There was a film where a Japanese photographer was talking about shooting pictures of skiers. He explained himself as every time he takes a picture of this snowboarder turning, he wants it to show every experience the snowboarder has had in his life, just in that frame. I could see the wrinkles on his face, and in his eyes you could see his soul, lit on fire.

I hope I can be the one to take those pictures for you; to show you that there is something so much bigger than where you are now and to show you that experience can be so incredibly powerful; overwhelming.


today, I wandered through ice sheets and red and yellow reeds and could explore the world through
winter's eye.
i found that things are still beautiful.

I threw stones at the stars but the whole sky fell.

That tall grass grows high and brown.

And you sent me back to where I roam.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


my recent has consisted of pieces and parts.

I have been going to thrift stores every week. There is something about them that makes me curl my toes and makes my heart burst. I walk in and its an overload of stories. I can pick up a plate and think
where have you been?
what conversations have you heard?
I make the rounds in the shop, first to the clothes, then I try on shoes that are 4 times too big for my me since I have little baby sized feet. After that, I go over to the jewelry, and then lastly (and my most favorite) I look at the old cameras. Oh man, I wish I could afford to shoot my life in Polaroids.

I have always argued that the world isn't made up of atoms, it is made of stories. I guess thats exactly why I like to shop in secondhand places. It is like people-watching but with items instead.

A couple other random notes:

I feel like sometimes people don't trust my judgement on certain situations or people. And they never seem to understand that I know myself better than anyone. And what I choose is what I'm going to choose, regardless of their opinion. Because everyone has different context. I make the best decisions for myself and even know sometimes they turn out wrong, it was the best decision for me at the time, and I expect you to support me in that.

I hate loosing friendships. My life is a plant. My stems come from roots that are my soul sisters and brothers. I create bridges. I think the biggest compliment I have ever received is when someone said "you are really good at making good friends and keeping them around." But lately I have felt like those roots are thin for some and stronger for others. I guess that is how life goes, but its hard to try to fix those thinning strings when I feel like the support or respect doesn't go both ways anymore. I don't need to be lectured, I don't need you to tell me what I should have done or how it is going to go. My life is my own, and yours is your own. I think we all need help growing sometimes, but I don't think you should be lectured about how.

For a couple days I struggled with what to give up for Lent. I'm sure there are a million things that I could handle loosing for 40 days to make me a better person. But I feel like taking something on would be so much more beneficial to me. So...I came up with an idea. I wrote down 40 people's names and put them in a jar. Everyday I pick up a name, and spend time thinking, praying, sending good vibes to those people. I love it.

I read on a friend's blog that the best part of getting to know someone is finding that you are more intrigued by what they have to say then by what you have to tell them. that is beautiful.

I played banjo and guitar tonight. My life has been filled with these moments lately. It is a wonderful feeling, I have been seeing little parts of my soul bread crumbs leading to exactly where I am meant to sit.

from the cracks in the sink to the peeling paint on my walls
we show ourselves how to fit into the spaces.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

a little different.

Hailey and I have been talking about doing photos for a long time together. She has been a long time friend it has been ridiculous that we haven't gotten around to photos until now. Luckily, we are good enough friends that she put on a swimsuit and crawled in my bathtub for 2 hours while I tried to get "the shot".

I wish, really really wish, that you could see the "making of" process of all of my photos. These people who decide that they wish to get in front of my lense put up with a ton of my shenanigans so my photos can turn out how they do. so thank you for everyone that has volunteered or I have talked into sitting with me for hours while I try to express my ideas to other people.

I guess lately I have been feeling like I should change up my style, do something different and bold. Well...I had an idea for a water photo and these slowly turned into not exactly what I was thinking, but I like them because they are different and turned out more powerful than I had originally planned. At first Hailey and I were calling them creepy but then someone used the word "unsettling". I feel like that is completely the correct word to use.

This picture makes me want to love. These two were fluffed up next to each other all day while the snow came down.

I went to the flea market yesterday to find things for today's photo shoot. I walked through all the isles, letting my eyes glaze over until I found something that struck me. The closer I got to the end of the store, the more anxious I got. I kept looking for the right thing but I was overloaded with all the things that could be a possibility. Then, one of the employees came up and told me they were closing in 20 minutes. Suddenly my mind panicked and I literally power-walked through 20 isles finding things. I ended up leaving 20 minutes later with an old tv and a pair of suspenders. I'm sure the people who worked there thought I was crazy. Here are my favorite shots from the tv shoot (I'm saving the suspenders for something later). Enjoy :)
this picture, when I first saw it brought tears to my eyes. It made me immediately think of your world being shaken, of everything turning around and suddenly not having the same ground that you were once on. So I called it "hold on, change is coming."

H- she's the best!

Saturday, February 20, 2010


life will go on.
it will be ok.

climb vs. photograph

So I started this blog out because I thought I wanted to write about climbing and pursue that side of my life more. Through the course of this experience, which has been a couple months, I have realized that it is turning more into a photography and personal blog. So if you have been reading/following this blog and are disappointed with the content, I apologize.

It is funny how your passions change. I still love climbing but I realize that I am never going to be a v10-or-so climber. I enjoy being around climbers and being involved in the sport. But I don't have the drive to be one of the strongest in the sport. I would like to get stronger, there is no doubt about that. But sometimes I just don't feel like climbing and I'm not going to push myself to do something that I am only kind of excited about. I don't want to turn into something that I feel like I have to do. I have the utmost respect for professional climbers and friends who are incredibly strong, because they have the drive and the passion to push themselves further and have become very mentally and physically strong. I am just realizing more and more that I enjoy taking pictures, maybe even more than climbing.

Both of those subjects are very artistic. I think you have to be somewhat artistic to climb because you have to connect each move smoothly and teach your body to move with the problem. Photography is artistic because you are showing someone else what you feel. If you don't make your moment connect to someone else's, what is the point of taking a photo? And being able to let someone feel something through an image is definitely art. Actually, it's incredibly cool.

So for the past couple times I have been out climbing, I realize I spend more time taking photos than actually climbing. I have an awesome time each time, because climbers are just generally all around stellar people. But I think I might be better at capturing moments than climbing.

It is a scary feeling, to feel my passions switch positions, because I always thought that I was going to follow in my Uncle's footsteps and climb really well. But I'm not my Uncle. I'm never going to be the exact person he was and I shouldn't try to be. But I do feel like we are similar in some ways.

So it has become a balance between leisure time for me. Do I go climb? or do I take photos? Anyways, as a quick update, I drove down to Boulder for some grant meetings. Both of which ended up being cancelled...sweet. So I guess I drove down to Boulder to hang out with some cool people, climb and for Veda to have a play date with Angie P.'s puppy, Jake (gracias Angie!) I made a quick visit to Movement for the first time, and I was really impressed. It is the first gym I've been in that does the v-rating system and I felt like was consistent with outdoor ratings. It is an incredible place, very clean and open. And intimidating. But definitely the top of my list of incredible climbing gyms I have been in. But it is snowing hard and I'm concerned that it will get worse so I'm going to head BACK up to Laramie. Soo tired of driving. (within the past week I will have driven 10 hours. yayy...)

Hopefully the snow in Laramie will melt sooner than later so I can either climb or photograph. I'm not sure which one I want to do more.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

i swear

we bonded over broken bones.

i swear that day you saw straight through me.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


i thought a lot for the past couple days. I had 6+ driving hours to do, which demands a lot of thinking time. At first I tried to avoid it, and just let my mind go blank but then the thoughts came pouring on and I had to divide them up into sections.

Recently I have had a lot of alone time. The more time I spend by myself, the more comfortable I am with it. It's nice to finally get that feeling. I am a solo roller, and eventually someone will come along to join the adventure. But until then, I am doing what I want when I want to. However, I do need to balance that with actually attending class...

I had the ability to untangle some knots this weekend. They didn't completely unravel, but they are on their way of becoming untied. Through that process, I learned a lot about bravery. I had to do something that I was terrified of doing. Before this event occurred, my brain kept telling me to run. That somehow, I could find a loophole and I could escape what was coming. I ran through all the options in my brain and all of the consequences made me reconsider my previous thoughts. This made me think about all the things I have ran from in the past. The things started stacking up and I made the decision to change that. I have told so many people, 'do not run from your problems.' Mayyybe I should follow my own advice.

the word change has been tagging along my side lately, biting at my heels. All I try to do is shrug it off and pretend like it isn't phasing me, but it needs to. My good friend told me "While change is hard for all concerned, it’s hardest for the ones who aren’t choosing the change and are put in a position of embracing someone else choice." Whew. How about that for some truth? So as difficult as it is, I'm going to try to embrace it slowly.

I have finally come up with a reason I have been taking so many 'thought-full' pictures, as Mei calls them. Usually I need structure in my life constantly, or else I get incredibly stressed out. But recently, it has been the complete opposite. The more structure I have, the more I feel tied down, attached to something not tangible and it is tearing me up. So even though I have found myself in more uncomfortable situations, the adventures to go along with them have kept my soul flying from one place to another, never stopping.

So the more these experiences help me grow up, I see more of how the next couple years of my life are going to go. I need stable roots in different places but I, myself, am never going to be a stable root. My life needs motion, it seeks adventures and I need to feel the wind in different cities and states and countries. Eventually I will settle down but I refuse to wait until then for my life to start. If anything, I'm behind on exploring.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Instead of v-day, i'm giving you a list of..

I don't like Valentines day. It's an over commercialized Halmark holiday. But I do believe you should tell someone you love them today.

Things to fall in love with.

Polaroid photographs and pictures that are folded up and kept in wallets.
Laughing until your sides hurt and the feeling of trying to hold in laughter when you're not supposed to make a sound.
The spines of old books.
Dancing and dancing around the room to a song that is your favorite.
Good food and good people to share it with.
Guitars and people who play them.
Smelling good after showering.
Getting mail and opening boxes or gifts.
When things don't go the way you planned, they turn out better.
Building forts.
The smell of crayons.
The way the world turns orange and yellow during the fall.
Falling asleep next to someone that makes you happy.
Fortune cookies.
Take-out food in general.
Remembering something that still makes you laugh thinking about it.
Finding notes in your pockets.
Coming back to a place you've forgotten about- dust those cobwebs off.
Really good conversations.
Finding something you lost.
Inside jokes.
Driving with the windows down.
The smell on fire that stays on your clothes until you wash them.

Love is the simplest and the most complicated emotion. But fall in love, stay in love, and it will decide everything.

have a happy love day :)

Friday, February 12, 2010


Yesterday I had an idea.

It started brewing in my mind and the amount of excitement that I had to take these pictures was keeping me awake.

I wanted something fun, I wanted something that we could laugh about, and most of all, I wanted pictures of my roommates for our living room. So we painted our faces.

After a splatter or two, we all were covered in different colors, each one chosen by us. I laughed until I cried and took more than a handful of pictures.

Today was about fun, and thats how life should be.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


in the middle.of.nowhere.

it's not the end of the road.


soak in the moment.

all i want you to know right now is that you have a good heart. use it.

help it grow.
make it even better.
even stronger.
even more than it ever was.

i finally told someone tonight the thoughts that had been on my mind for over a year.
it feels good to let go.

Monday, February 8, 2010


How do you judge tragedies?

You can't say one is worse than another.
You can't say that one is harder to deal with than the one next to it.
You can't judge a tragedy.

Each person deals with things differently and it is impossible to say "mine hurt more".

think about it. and as promised, here are lyrics with photos.

I hear you call me, branches break in the wind.

and through the leaves and concrete
you're going to grow into something that death can't steal.
a garden that gives
sprouts come up glowing fruits of jade and golden silver trees
to mark the legacy of a life that finally learned what this means
the invisible choir sings you a voiceless lesson so you'll always remember
what grew out of decisions that death can't steal
lives that learned to give when it seemed there was nothing oh,
how much more it meant to those around
we go there's a rhythm soft and slow
you'll always hear the choir if you listen close