It's true... nerds are a group of people who have discovered the essence of joy in life. They know how to party it up and have a good time, regardless of what others say.

There aren't any bigger nerdy gatherings than book signings. (Unless you count Comic Con, of course. A level of nerd-ness I have yet to experience). Book signings are the best outlet for super fans to fully express their appreciation for the work of the author through any means possible. Having worked with the Provo City Library at several major events, I was once again called to photograph when Mr. Christopher Paolini came to Utah County. While I haven't ever read the Inheritance Cycle (School has kept me a bit preoccupied lately), I thoroughly enjoyed the stories he shared and the readings he chose. In fact, he grabbed copies of each book from different members of the audience to read a selection from each part of the series. Fans went nuts!

They didn't need Paolini to get them going, though. Costumes were seen in abundance-- jokers, swords, monks, women in tiaras and capes... men in crowns and little elf hats that were green and pointy... Costumes, costumes everywhere.

Ah! The epitome of NERD! I felt so at home!

And then there was this girl:


Is there anything more awesome? Really? If you know of anything, you need to send me a picture, because this really made the entire night!


And for your enjoyment...

...Froggy getting ready in the morning!

Okay, so not the best caption. I think there's a really fun one out there and I am offering a print of any one of my Florida pictures (either that I've posted on this blog or here) to whoever comes up with the best caption. So please... entertain me! I'm going to need it once I get home and I realize no more tropical weather for me.



Thanks to Mr. Mason, who was walking his dog near the marina this morning, I was able to take some pictures of an owl.

It was a Harry Potter sort of a morning!


St. Cloud, Day 3

I will be posting about Harry Potter... tomorrow. I'm too tired right now. Here's something from this morning at least!


St. Cloud, Day 2

This image is to size of the actual spider. Supposedly, it's harmless. I don't know if I believe that.


Cocoa beach

I wasn't planning on writing with any of the pictures again this week, but I feel the need, if only to express this great amount of gratitude bursting from inside me!

A few weeks ago, I was having a discussion with a photographer that I have a great deal of respect for. He was talking about a project he's working on and those things he's received from the place he photographs. He described it as the landscape showing and giving him what he needed for his images.

I must admit that even as he explained this, I felt envious. There was a part of me that understood the idea, but I longed to know that experience for myself.

Tonight, after some complications that caused me to get to the beach just as the light was getting good, I wanted to kick myself as I set up tripod, camera, changed the lens, and basically got ready everything I thought I would need. Then I noticed something brilliant: a lightning storm just off the shore where the waves started rolling towards the sandy ground at my feet. Gorgeous clouds that bounced all the colors from the sunset reflected back at me as I tried to get ready and I found myself enthralled with the storm ahead.

I can't quite describe the connection that I had at that moment. I know it's not quite the same as was explained to me by this other photographer. He was referring to something that happens after spending vast amounts of time with a place, the syncopated steps that you fall into with an old friend. This was the meeting of an acquaintance that you feel you have known for ages. The work of a duet, the ocean and myself working on improvising with one another until we had that sort of harmony that can't be planned and manipulated through hours of practice, but that perfect something which no one else can describe, but which I felt.

I have a hunch this was just a taste of that connection that could be. Just enough to whet my appetite and put me in awe of greater things than myself.

I hope you enjoy the product of my experience as much as I do.


As I packed two nights ago, I had to keep repeating a mantra of "I will not bring school work with me to Florida... I will not bring school work with me to Florida..." until I found myself huddled in the corner of my new room, muttering this to myself over and over while slapping my hand away as it reached for books on art theory and ASL literature. My new roommates may think I'm a little loony.

I am proud to say I was successful, however, and have prevailed in enjoying this vacation thus far. I did, of course, bring my camera--the most enjoyable "work" of all. Three of them actually. I intend to try shooting some color film on this trip, hopefully with some success. (That said, any advice from my photo friends who have crossed this threshold on common mistakes, it would be greatly appreciated!) The third is a point and shoot for Harry Potter World on Friday. So very much to look forward to!

In an attempt to really make some great images, I will be posting a "best of " image each day here. For more from each day visit my photography page  on facebook and watch the latest feed. You may be my new best friend if you hit "like" on the page as well, which would help you follow it automatically.

And without further ado:

I just love the variety of birds here. I'm afraid to say there may be a lot of bird pictures in the near future.

(Oh, and p.s. ... don't forget to go enter the Chester the Best-er giveaway here. I'm helping with the designs and one way is to comment on where you think I should go next! I could use some good ideas :) )



School is over (for now) and I'm unpacking my life into a new place, but what I'm really anticipating is Florida this next week!

While you should be on the lookout here for pictures of that, I also wanted to give you a heads up about a giveaway one of my great-grand friends is holding that I'm helping out with.

Chessie is one of the best writers I know. I enjoy reading her blog and always get a laugh out of the way she manages to view the simplest situation. I highly highly recommend anyone to read her blog.

Also, we've been scheming and I'm designing bookmarks, a calendar, and a t-shirt for her first giveaway. We're using Chessie-isms from her blog and you are all invited to enter. Here's how:

How to win:
Required entry: Leave a comment on this blog telling me which design you like best or your favorite quote from this blog.

Extra entries:
Each additional item will increase your chances of winning. You can do any or all of these for up to six entries. If you already do these, they count, but you MUST leave a separate comment for each item, or they will only count as one entry.
  1. Visit Marie's travel blog Rie Around the World. Come back here and leave a comment suggesting where she should go next.
  2. Join Marie Teemant Photography on Facebook.
  3. Join Chester the Best-er on Facebook (or see right sidebar).
  4. Follow my blog OR subscribe to its email updates (see right sidebar). Once you subscribe, you will receive an email confirming your subscription.
  5. Follow @chessthebess on Twitter and tweet the following statement, then come back to this post telling me you tweeted. 
I just entered to win a #giveaway from @chessthebess! Enter here: goo.gl/fb/cM00Y

Go to her blog and leave the comments there and see some of the work in progress designs.


Capitol Reef

This is a post a long time coming.

With the first block of summer classes, my photography classes went to Capitol Reef National Park for a week, where the school has a field station. My kind of camping really: with hot showers (at least for the girls)., beds, and meals that someone else cooked (yay for Randy!). The time has passed for the stories of that week, but here are a few pictures to enjoy!

On the first morning we went to Hickman Bridge, where Travis and John educated us on a new concept: shooting with the lens detached. Let's just say a lot of us started on this "non-traditional" method.


The rock formations were spectacular. Especially in Cathedral Valley (where, by the way, we battled to keep tents grounded against the wind the one night we did go  camping!). The image just above is the temple of the sun.

There's a quaint little town on the way out of the park that has been preserved. This is the school house. One room. Lots easier than navigating a campus, but much more crowded, methinks.

I took this last one for my cousin, who I happened to run into on our last hike of the week to Calf Creek Falls. "Wait til you see the mouth!" he commented. I had no clue what he meant, but it seemed pretty clear when I saw this. 
The traveling has slowed due to funds, but check out the Estonia 2012 page and look out for some Florida pictures next month!


Goblin Valley

This summer, I'm taking a class in landscape photography (something I knew I needed to get much better at). A few of us decided to take a quick trip down to Goblin Valley and camped there overnight. One of the students brought his two daughters, which made the whole trip a hundred times more fun.

Goblin Valley is an extremely unique area. You may have seen it in the movie Galaxy Quest--which we watched Friday night before turning in for the night. One of my favorite things was the shadows! So many shapes! Next time you're somewhere amazing on a sunny day, look at the shadows! They're likely to be just as interesting as the scenery.

This one is the ground, but I wasn't liking it how it was shot. I almost like it better this way,
but I'm not entirely sold... any ideas?

Travis with his camera before he dropped it. We all had sympathy for him. Mike told
him he was allowed to swear

Shelley shooting.
We got to play on Saturday after the light wasn't as good as first morning's light. Travis knew about a cave that we all crawled into and I had to take some ibuprofen for the foot, but it was totally worth it! Fun play to camp out.


Stay-cation: Part I

As a part of our color photography class, we needed to come up with a "theme" or thoughts on what we would be shooting for our final. I decided to expand my experience with travel by doing a bit of a "Stay-cation". Everyone remember how that word became big a few years ago? When the economy dropped and no one could afford to travel? Well, here it is: a stay-cation around Salt Lake City. I'm out to discover the beauties of the state and all those places I've heard so much about and start to experience them.

Today I went to see the Spiral Jetty with one Miss Mikki Helmer. We left at 5 this morning and made our way through rain, wind, snow, staring cows, and all the mishaps of Mikki's "innate sense of direction" and finally got there!

For those of you who haven't heard of the Spiral Jetty, it's a piece of environmental art from 1970 by Robert Smithson. He meant it to be out of the way (that was until they forged a road right up to it). The risk is that there are often times the Jetty is completely submerged. We lucked out. See?

A little early morning fog.

 I loved the effect with the overcast skies. I'd been hoping for sunshine, but this turned out too good to be regretful now!

We climbed up a bit. You know me... cast, boot, crutches... who cares? Adventure ahead!

This was playing with a fish eye lens. I still need some practice with it, but this was a fun little "mini-me" spiral jetty someone made. I entitle it "Art Breeds!"

She had no idea she would be photography assistant, human-walking-stick, and model. 



Mikki actually ran down to make the birds fly. I was hoping they'd go a little higher, but I'll take what I can get!

This last week I also went to Salt Lake City and the "This is the Place" monument and Park City is on the list of places to go. Click follow to see more as it comes!!!


Arches National Park

I knew I wanted to go somewhere fun for Spring Break. I was supposed to go to Florida.But car accidents happen.

Then my friend Kristen wanted to find some people to go camping/hiking and I thought... "why not give it a shot, eh?" I mean, who really cares if I was still in a cast and on crutches? I was days away from getting the cast off so there could be worse things for me to do. Like skateboarding. Or skydiving. A thing which I would never do.

So we left Wednesday morning after getting the last of everything together. Three of us girls (who needs a boy to put up a tent?) made our way southeast and to the beautiful red rock deserts near Moab.

Tent building was fun, despite the wind. Of course, I took pictures, mostly, but I was able to anchor down one side by standing on it with crutches. It would have stayed up the first time if it hadn't been so windy. We had already decided to go into town to get some metal stakes (the plastic ones weren't cutting it) and came back to a complete collapse. When we got back that night from our first small hike to Broken Arch, though, it had managed, so we had high hopes when we went to bed.

Since the next day it was supposed to rain at some point, we stuck to shorter hikes, making sure we could get back once the rain dumped. We even went to Canyonland and got some great pictures. Alas, the rain began around two and we had to high tail it back to camp, where we shivered ourselves to death until the next day.

Friday was the best. We did a couple little hikes and Alyx and Kristen took on Devil's Garden, which was perhaps a bit too ambitious for my poor broken foot. I still didn't give up on Delicate Arch, though: 3 miles round trip, a good chunk of which is over some uneven sandstone. The three of us got a pretty good rhythm of getting me to where I needed to go when the path got a bit rough, but the best part was all the commentary from other hikers. "You're such a trooper," was probably the most oft repeated followed by other things like, "Incredible!", "You go girl!", "I'll stop complaining", and my favorite made by one of the last groups we passed, "As a physical therapist, I can't recommend what you're doing, but 'A' for courage."

It's definitely fun to get through a hike where everyone is cheering you on! And the best part??? GREAT pictures! Here are a few that have been edited up so far.