Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Photo Contest

I made it to the top 8 of a "posing outtake" photo contest.  This photo was from my baby shoot this weekend.  I would love it if you could go and vote for me at www.captivatephotogs.com.

Thank you!!!!!

Monday, February 7, 2011

San Fran (January 2010) - The first set of photos

Here are some photos I played with tonight.  Some have the HDR effect added to them so they look surreal (and I love it).  More to come.

Alcatraz in HDR

Oakland Temple - such beauty!

Alcatraz Island - Quarters for the Families of the Guards

Sunset from Alcatraz Island - My FAVORITE photo (pat on my back)

Fog rolling over the Golden Gate Bridge at Sunset

Monterey Bay Aquarium

San Fran City Lights at Night in HDR

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

For All You Photog's out there:

Moms With Cameras is giving away a copy of their brand-new workbook at www.moms-with-cameras.com!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Okay, it's been a while

I have been absent from posting for a while.  I have been so busy between work (overtime) and photography (the editing takes up so much time).  So I will post a few pics from when Sam took me for a weekend to Winthrop (an amazing place!!!!!). 

Oh, and in my exciting news...I received my OFFICIAL business license for "Jen Chesnut Photography".  I decided it was time to make it official and trademark the name (in case another one exists out there).  So excited.  I look forward to all the portrait sessions I get to do in 2011....it will start off with some sweet baby photos!!!  BRAND NEW BABIES!

Enjoy Winthrop through my eyes and the enhancements of presets created by Laura (who is amazing) at www.prettypresets.com.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

It's time to be real & embrace life & all of it's twists and turns! (time to journal)

Time....Rhythm...Patterns...Habits...making sense
(this photo is taken at 11:30 pm with the shutter left open for about 50 minutes...I allowed quite a bit of light to come in so that is why it looks like day time, but you can see the stars pattern as the earth rotates...cool!)

I have always had routines, places where things should be kept and daily habits.  Since our last move to this new and beautiful house, I have to say that all of that has flown out the window and I feel like I am always fighting with a whirlwind that pulls me in multiple directions and I can never get a path set up to follow.  Why?  I don't know, I can't figure it out.  Maybe it has something to do with my adrenals being out of whack and not working....maybe the stress and timing of the move was too much and that is what finally shut down my adrenals.  But really....?  It took over a year and a half to get a diagnosis that explained what was going on with my body; it is my adrenal glands.

Do I like patterns, habits and routines.  Yes, you bet.  But can I also embrace the idea of being spontaneous?  Yes...I think.  Right now with the adrenals, spontaneity is a stressful thought & process, but I can get it back, right?

So being in this whirlwind....can I get out and create a path to lay my routines down on?  Are things where they should be in my house?  Yes, for the most part...  But I seem to change that around every once in a while. 

Why am I even thinking of this?  Well I was reading a blog by one of my all time favorite scrapbook queens/photo journalist, Ali Edwards (check it out: http://aliedwards.com/2010/08/the-perspective-of-longevity/#more-773) and she talks about finding a routine while moving in to their new house.  She has 2 little & energetic kids and a husband that serves in the Oregon senate...so she is WAY busier than me.  I love her simplicity for capturing life & memories...photos and true journaling.  Her inspiration to write life as it is so you can remember it (and embrace & learn from it) is what inspired me to sit down and just put all of my thoughts here.  Who reads my blog?  Does anyone even care?  Do I want people knowing that I feel like I am in a state of total chaos a lot of the time and most of it probably has to do with a body that doesn't want to function right?  Um, not really...but maybe it will make me stronger.  Life is great...I love my life, the man of my dreams who I get to spend the rest of my life with, a job that pays well in this economy (all though it can be a big part of my stress a lot of the times), a house that I love and helps calm me down, property to enjoy & relax in, and an amazing group of young women and men that I get to work with and spend time with each and every week.  Life is good!!!  "It's a great life"! (Thanks Grandpa Nielson).  For the most part I am ...healthly?  My shoulder is doing good - bonus!  My foot isn't any worse the it normally is - fabulous!  My knee hasn't dislocated in years - great!  And I haven't sprained my non-ligamented ankle since last year - DOUBLE BONUS!  I don't have the flu, skin rashes, or anything else like that.  But my body is trying to tell me I need to slow down...but really, where in life can I do that. 

(Sam just walked in and told me that Crawl Magazine, an off-road rock crawling magazine, used the name I gave an obstacle in Moab 3 years ago...it is official, although most people will never believe that I named the obstacle...Suicide Hill on the Green Day Trail in area BFE in Moab was originally thought up and named by me!!!!!!!  Wohooo.  See, life is great).

I am not allowed to workout..walking only.  BORING!!!!  I have to eat more veggies..ughhhh, so not what I want.  And I have really odd cravings, like eggs & home popped popcorn for dinner...?  I have to add salt to my water because I drink so much water due to excess thirst from the adrenals, but I have to keep the water in the cells in balance with the excess water.  Sleeping...medicated!  Energy...only on a really good & lucky day (but the latest supplements my Naturopath put me on have upped my energy level & consistency of it).  Cooking...most days I have no desire or energy to do it so it is either really simple, not at all or the occasional Yum Yum meal.  Cleaning...my house can have a good 2 hours on Saturday and then I am done for the day - energy, used!  Hobbies...they take a back seat most days because I just don't care to do anything thanks to depleted energy levels.  Patience..that's a joke most of the time.  Mental clarity & memory....HA, sometimes.

BUT, I have a great team of docs who say I can turn this around and get my adrenals working again.  I just have to be patient (really??????) and allow my body time to relax and recover (come on...can't I just go for one little run....?).  I think the Lord is teaching me patience seeing how I decided to work on it this year.  Great planning Jen!  So, even with life being great, I am going to have to learn to allow myself to de-stress and relax, while having the patience to allow my body to heal and letting people help me in the process.  I HATE to ask for help...and will go out of my way to NOT ask for help.  But I guess I have to allow people to help me more often.  Yuck!  And with all this chaos, I get to learn to carve out new pathways for routines, habits, pattern, and rhythms.  It can happen...it will happen...I can re-write my daily processes.  It's a great life!  I wish you were here Grandpa Nielson to remind me of that on the rough days!  But I guess I have 2 adorable nephews & 1 gorgeous niece, an always smiling sister, and incredible brother who always makes me feel like gold, a sister-in-law that is too amazing for words, understanding and ever giving parents, entertaining, accepting & never boring in-laws, and the most fabulous and hot husband to remind me each day that "it's a GREAT life"!  I am blessed...just so darn stubborn that I sometimes over look it.  :)

Thanks Ali for getting me to write my feelings down even if I don't like to admit I have issues and would rather just pretend that everything is okay & that I am in total control of my life.  Nope....the Lord is in charge of my life...I get to put my hand in His, trust Him always and let Him lead me to be the person I am to become.

"IT'S A GREAT LIFE!" - LeRoy Nielson
 (an attempt to catch some of the meteors two weekends ago....shutter left open for about 45  minutes...you can see some shooting stars and for some reason the stars all took on colors of their own.  I think to two spots at the top of the photo is the light that was let in from my head lamp as I tried to navigate my way to the camera in the pitch black)

PAINTING WITH LIGHT - some pictures from the fun Sam & I had trying out leaving the shutter open & using light to create images (Kelsy & that Joe Nathan kid joined in the following night.  Neighbors thought we were smoking mushrooms and having a rave.  Proves you don't need alcohol or drugs to have a great & crazy time)

trying to write our names...figuring out the quirks

painting Sam with light (first he had his arms folded and then I had him put them out - look close)

Love this!  Sam would light up his face with a flashlight while I outlined him with my headlamp. We would then turn off the lights and move over to repeat!

Tracing the '50 chevy in light

So then the next night I had to up the challenge...thank you Dollar Store for glow sticks and fiberoptic lights!!! (this is where Kelsy & that Joe Nathan kid joined in)

My favorite - this photo took all 4 of us

this is the Sam & Jen special

The Kelt-sy

The Kelsy & Joe Nathan psychedelic special

This is the neighbor kids running with the glow sticks (if you look to the left of the photo, you see a "light blob" low...that is where Zoe feel down laughing!

If you look closely you can see us!  Cam, Titan and Zoe (neighbors) joined us for the party!

(Left to Right) Kelsy, Sam, Jen, Joe Nathan (really it's Jonathan!)  - PEACE OUT PEEPS!