My favorite things with Kristen Ryan!

Jackson Hole

1. Jackson Hole and Grand Teton National Park: I’ve been spoiled all my life that my grandparents bought property in Jackson Hole, WY before I was born. At age 4, as the story goes, I put up my arms and declared “My Mountains”, and those mountains have had my heart ever since. My husband and I hiked nearly every backcountry trail in our early 20s and as the mountains come in view as we fly into the valley, a sense of calm comes over me. If you’ve been out there, surely you know what I mean, and if you haven’t, I highly recommend putting it on your list of “Must See” places!

2. Lululemon workout clothes: As an athlete and a runner, I cannot for the life of me understand why I wore the most awful workout attire for so long. When I discovered Lululemon’s tops, pants, and running shorts, I just fell in love! I refuse to wear anything else now, especially running shorts! They stay dry and are so comfortable! And they are flattering too! I even managed to wear them all during my twin pregnancy too!

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3. Epiphanie camera bags! How I love them! I have 2….a red clover and a black Lola! I love both but get more compliments on my red clover than any other purse or bag I have. I love how it fits my laptop plus ipad (which holds my books) and all my camera stuff so that when I travel, it is easy to fit everything in my carry on!

4. Breville single cup brewer and Starbucks K Cups: I’m not sure I could manage through the day without my coffee in the morning. Back in the day I thought I wanted to own a coffeeshop and went into management at Starbucks. The coffeeshop idea was nixed but I am completely addicted to the coffee. And I adore how fast my caffeine is dosed out with my Breville machine…maybe too fast sometimes 🙂

pizza copy 2

5. Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza: One of my favorite things about living in the Chicago area is the fabulous deep dish pizza…amazing crust and lots of cheese! Giordano’s and Lou Malnati’s are both big favorites around our house!

6. Lensbaby Composer Pro and Optics: I have the Sweet 35, Edge 80 and Macro Converters and the more I use these lenses, the more I love them. They enhance my creativity and the blur they add gives my image a softness that I strive for in my work.

7. My tripod and remote: I don’t know how I would have managed through all my CM classes without my tripod and remote. I have loved being able to capture images with me in the frame with my kids and to be able to challenge myself artistically by taking self portraits.

Me at the harp copy

8. Harpestry CD – This album of various harp instrumental music is the perfect relaxing music for a romantic dinner, or quiet night with a glass of wine.

9. Elements of Design Workshop by Sarah Wilkerson. This workshop was my first experience with Sarah as an instructor and my first 301 class. To this day, I believe those 5 weeks were a pivotal point in my photography journey and elevated the quality of my work.

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10. North Pond Cafe: This quaint little restaurant is situated in Lincoln Park in the city of Chicago. My husband and I got engaged just steps from the restaurant that overlooks North Pond with a view of the Chicago Skyline. This was also a well traveled path of my many walks and runs during my city living days. The restaurant highlights local and organic ingredients and the food is always artistically presented and delicious.