Flora & Fauna



  1. Red Berries: 9/30/14 – 5:09 PM – Rexburg, ID – 110.0 mm – f 4.5 – 1/32 – Canon EOS Rebel T3
  2. Fall Showers: 9/30/14 – 6:14 PM – Rexburg, ID – 80.0 mm – f 4.0 – 1/10 – Canon EOS Rebel T3
  3. Thorn Flower: 9/30/14 – 3:55 PM – Rexburg, ID – 75.0 mm – f 4.0 – 1/500 – Canon EOS Rebel T3
  4. Fallen Fruit: 9:30/14 – 5:45 PM – Rexburg, ID – 75.0 mm – f 4.0 – 1/20 – Canon EOS Rebel T3
  5. Chuck: 9:30/14 – 4:03 PM – Rexburg, ID – 80.0 mm – f 4.0 – 1/50 – Canon EOS Rebel T3
  6. Ducky Dynasty: 9/30/14 – 3:49 PM – Rexburg, ID – 75.0 mm – f 4.0 – 1/1000 – Canon EOS Rebel T3


This week I was reminded that I am truly an amateur photographer. I struggled with taking the flora and fauna photos much more than I initially thought I would. Natural light is my best friend, but when it is taken away I seem to be at a bit of a loss. Every time I had a break in my hectic schedule and decided to go out and shoot some photographs it began to rain! I don’t mind getting a little wet, but naturally I had to protect my beautiful, expensive, camera. I spent most of my time either trying to balance my umbrella and my camera while still getting a clear shot or impatiently waiting out the rain in my car. Now I am quite a perfectionist in pretty much everything I do, especially artistically, so this was a problem. When the rain did occasionally stop it was usually pretty dark so my shutter would stay open a bit longer to compensate and my shot would come out blurry. I know that photographers deal with less than ideal conditions all of the time, but their expertise helps them to compensate. One day I will have some more tricks up my sleeve. I was filled with anxiety and frustration, but I remained determined as I took at least 100 photographs in the hopes that I could capture a few good shots. Above you can see some of the results of my crazy rainy adventures.

I pulled each of the photographs into Photoshop and sharpened them to try to clear up any unwanted blurriness. I boosted the brightness, contrast, vibrance and I even tweaked the saturation in some cases. I also manipulated the levels a bit to bring out certain colors. I used my 75-300mm lens to shoot these photographs because I knew I wanted to shoot most of them with a large aperture and my longer lens gives me access to a wider aperture range. I laid down on the wet grass to get the photograph of the leaves in the gutter, but it didn’t turn out quite as sharp as I would’ve liked. It was more difficult for me to find animals to photograph than plants. I shot the duck photograph with a fast shutter speed because the ducks kept moving and blurring in my pictures. It was cloudy and sprinkling outside which meant the light was really low and my picture turned out pretty dark. I lightened it to capacity in Photoshop, but it is still darker than I prefer.


Priority Modes

Shallow Focus- Large Aperture


Deep Focus- Small Aperture


Frozen Action- Fast Shutter Speed


Blurred Motion- Slow Shutter Speed


1.       Yellow Fence: 09/23/14 – 3:22 PM – Rexburg, ID – 24.0 mm – f 4.0 – 1/800 – Canon EOS Rebel T3

2.       Diamonds and Lace: 9/23/14 – 2:51 PM – Rexburg, ID – 55.0 mm – f 5.6 – 1/100 – Canon EOS Rebel T3

3.       Graffiti Train: 9/27/14 – 8:26 AM – Rexburg, ID – 47.0 mm – f 29 – 0.4 seconds – Canon EOS Rebel T3

4.       Girl with the Golden Glitter: 9/26/14 – 5:38 PM – Rexburg, ID – 32.0 mm – f 4.5 – 1/1000 – Canon EOS Rebel T3

5.       Water Drops: 9/26/14 – 5:23 PM – Rexburg, ID – 120.0 mm – f 4.5 – 1/1000 – Canon EOS Rebel T3

6.       Life in the Fast Lane: 9/26/14 – 9:15 PM – Rexburg, ID – 29.0 mm – f 11 – 32.0 seconds – Canon EOS Rebel T3- tripod

7.       Lights: 9/26/14 – 8:24 PM – Rexburg, ID – 29.0 mm – f 4.5 – 32.0 seconds – Canon EOS Rebel T3 – tripod


Photo: Yellow Study


  1. When Life Gives You Lemons: 09/22/2014- 12:24pm- Rexburg, ID- 40.0mm- f 5.6- 1/80- Canon EOS Rebel T3
  2. Back to School: 09/22/2014- 5:59pm- Rexburg, ID- 36.0mm- f 25- 1/32- Canon EOS Rebel T3
  3. KT: 09/22/2014- 6:18pm- Rexburg, ID- 42.0mm- f 5.0- 1/64- Canon EOS Rebel T3
  4. 7 Yellow Balloons: 09/23/2014- 4:15pm- Rexburg, ID- 55.0mm- f 5.6- 1/1328- Canon EOS Rebel T3


Yellow is my favorite color! I particularly love the earthy yellow tones. Mustard yellow was one of my wedding colors and the center stone in my engagement ring is a yellow diamond, so I guess you can say that I’m kind of obsessed. Yellow is a happy, vibrant color that reminds me of the sunshine. I tried to take a variety of photographs to represent the color yellow. For my first photograph I used an f 5.6 aperture that produced a shallow depth of field that allowed me to bring the lemon into sharp focus and blur the edges around it. I love natural light and the beauty that it brings to my photographs. In the lemon picture I opened our sliding glass door to let some natural light into our kitchen. I didn’t do any edits to this photograph. For my second photograph I went to the bus yard in Rexburg on a rainy day which produced a very soft light. I used an f 25 aperture on this photo to try and get a large depth of field. My third photograph is of my friend, and gracious model, Katie Bailey. I took this photograph on the same day as the previous bus photo so the light was soft and perfect for portraits. I used an f 5.0 aperture for this photo in order to produce a shallow depth of field, which blurred the background and brought Katie into sharp focus. I boosted the color in Photoshop and used the dodge tool to brighten her eyes slightly. I took my final photo of the balloons in Smith Park this afternoon when the sun was shining because I wanted to let the sun shine through the balloons. I lightened this photo in Photoshop slightly to bring out the color in the front balloons a bit more.

Edit: Cutouts


Full Cutout:

Pumpkins: 10/15/2013- 3:00pm- Rexburg, ID- 5.0mm- f 2.8- 1/50- Canon PowerShot ELPH100HS

Partial Cutout:

Grad: 04/25/2014- 5:46pm- Provo, UT- 18.0mm- f 3.5- 1/40- Canon EOS Rebel T3


For my cutouts I chose two photographs that I had taken previously. I wanted my full cutout to have some character so I chose the pumpkins because instead of straight lines the outsides have a bumpy texture that makes them pop. I chose the graduation picture for my partial cutout because I wanted some type of straight line like a floor or table to act as my partial cutout. I opened both photographs in Photoshop and then used the quick selection tool to select the portions of each photo that I wanted to cut out. I made sure to zoom in so that I would get the cleanest margins possible. I then used the refine edge window to soften and feather the edges of my cutout to smooth out any imperfections. Finally I chose a black background for my pumpkins and a white background for my grad picture.

Past Photos











  1. The Sky is Falling: 10/13/2013- 2:17pm- Rexburg, ID- f 2.8- 1/80- Canon PowerShot ELPH 100 HS- I boosted the saturation a bit in this photo to bring out the beautiful red in the apples.
  2. Little Lady: 10/12/2013- 2:24pm- Rexburg, ID- f 2.8- 1/640- Canon PowerShot ELPH 100 HS- I didn’t have to make any additional edits to this photo because it was a cloudy day and the lighting was great.
  3. Day at the Orchard: 10/15/2013- 2:27pm- Rexburg, ID- f 2.8- 1/160- Canon PowerShot ELPH 100 HS- I boosted the saturation slightly and added a bit more warmth to the picture.
  4. Sweet Scents: 12/1/2013- 11:36am- Rexburg, ID- f 4.0- 1/12- Canon EOS Rebel T3- I decreased the contrast in this picture to give it a bit of an antique look and also added some warmth.
  5. Come Away With Me: 12/23/2o13- 10:05am- Bora Bora, French Polynesia- f 3.5- 1/20- Canon EOS Rebel T3- The lighting and everything came out perfect in this picture so I didn’t have to edit a thing.
  6. Paradise: 12/26/2013- 7:24am- Bora Bora,  French Polynesia- f 22- 1/1000- Canon EOS Rebel T3
  7. Rosie Posey: 04/17/2014- 3:46pm- McKinney, TX- f 4.5- 1/50- Canon EOS Rebel T3- The lighting was kind of bad in this photo initially because of a harsh overhead light that was on above the table. To balance the light out I cooled down the picture and lowered the contrast a bit.
  8. From This Day Forward: 08/09/2014- 4:53pm- McKinney, TX- f 3.5- 1/32- Canon EOS Rebel T3- I didn’t edit this photograph at all.
  9. Family: 08/09/2014- 5:34pm- McKinney, TX- f 4.0- 1/40- Canon EOS Rebel T3- I brought the contrast down and the saturation up a bit in this photo.
  10. You and Me: 08/09/2014- 5:50pm- McKinney, TX- f 4.0- 1/50- Canon EOS Rebel T3- This photo came out great without edits.

I love taking photographs and capturing moments so I often find myself pulling out my camera every chance I get. I tried to compile a group of some of my favorite photographs for this assignment. The first three were taken in the apple orchard on the BYU-I campus last fall right around my birthday. One of my favorite things to do while I’m shooting is to try to find a different perspective. In the first shot I found myself looking down at a huge pile of apples that had fallen from the trees in the orchard and I decided to capture that photo from my perspective. I find the details in life to be the most fascinating so when I saw a ladybug land on my friend’s hand I knew I had to capture that shot. For the third photograph I actually ended up laying on the ground to get a low angle with a large depth of field and was able to capture a row of apple trees. When I have some free time at home I often go around and take pictures of things around the house to spark my creativity and hopefully help me to learn something new. The fourth picture is a result of a cold winter day inside. I took the next two photographs last Christmas when my family and I were vacationing in Bora Bora. Everything was gorgeous there so it was fairly easy to get beautiful shots. When it comes to photography my method is to shoot tons and tons of photographs and then pick a few that I love from that selection. The more I shoot the more likely I am to get a few great ones. The seventh picture are the huts we stayed in over the ocean in Bora Bora. I tried to use the principle of repetition to help the flow of the photograph. The eighth photograph is of my niece Rose on her third birthday. I love to capture candid shots as opposed to the more posed ones. This moment captures great emotion to me. The last three photographs are of my step-sister Mandy’s wedding. I had the privilege of being the photographer at her wedding this summer and I learned a lot. I learned that photo shoots are a lot of fun, but weddings are extremely hectic and hard to control. In the first wedding photo of Mandy I wanted to play with the lighting and get a bit of a silhouette in the photograph so I had her stand next to the window to take advantage of the natural light coming in from outside. I’m not sure if I have a specific style or specialty with my photography yet, but I love trying a little bit of everything!


Hey everyone, WELCOME to my blog! As you can probably tell I have quite a conglomeration of information on here. I have been working on developing this website ever since I began the Communications program at BYU-Idaho a little over a year and a half ago. I am totally obsessed and have loved every second of it! There are definitely sections that need updating or at least a little more TLC, but feel free to browse around and see what I have to offer.


READ ON to learn a bit more about me 🙂

My name is Johnna McGarrah. My family moved around quite a bit growing up so explaining where I’m from is always tricky, but I claim Texas. I was born in Houston, Texas, but moved to Schaumburg, Illinois when I was only 18 months old. I spent the next 8 years growing up there in a cute little suburban neighborhood just over 30 minutes outside of Chicago. My family then moved back to the Dallas area in Texas and then back to Schaumburg followed by a few years in College Station, Texas (home of the Texas A&M Aggies… WHOOP!). We then moved again to a town near Boulder, Colorado where I graduated from high school. My parents are empty nesters now and reside permanently (or so they tell me) in McKinney, Texas. I have one little sister named Jillian who graduated from BYU-Provo not too long ago and currently lives in Houston, Texas with her husband Nate.


I had the amazing privilege of serving a mission on Temple Square in SLC from September 2009 to March 2011. My mission completely changed my life and continues to be a source of strength and guidance to me daily. I have been home a little over 3 ½ years now, but I still miss it every single day.


I met my cute husband a few months after I returned from my mission while working as an EFY counselor in San Antonio, Texas. Although we became friends almost instantly I tried to make it clear that he was in the friend zone and would probably always remain there. Four months later I realized that I kind of liked having him around so we began dating exclusively. As they say, the rest is history! We have now been married for almost a year and a half and are happier than ever. We are currently living in Rexburg until we both graduate next year after which we hope to move back down south.


As far as my life at BYU-I goes I am currently a junior majoring in Communications with an emphasis in Visual Comm and I absolutely LOVE it! I changed my major a few semesters ago and feel like I’m finally exactly where I need to be.

I don’t really know what I want to do for a career yet, but I do know that I really love to design on the computer. My favorite program is Adobe Illustrator. I basically like doing anything artistic or that allows me to be creative. Photography is a passion of mine and I had the opportunity to shoot my first wedding over the 7-week break this summer for my step sister Mandy. I also love home décor and am obsessed with decorating and coming up with new artistic projects.


I work in the registration unit within the Student Records and Registration Office on campus and am cherishing the professional experience it provides.


My father inspired my interest in photography from any early age. Ever since I can remember I’ve been taking pictures. When I was younger I had a film camera that I would take with me practically everywhere and fill up the rolls so that I could take it to the store and get my pictures developed. I always had countless boxes of photographs stacked in my closet. I eventually graduated to a digital camera and about a year ago I finally bought a Canon Rebel T3 DSLR. I have taken a basic photography class and a visual media class that have helped spark my creativity and provided me with a solid starting point. I love to spend time experimenting with photographs and often shoot hundreds of pictures to stretch my creativity and discover new perspectives. I have several of the Adobe programs on my computer including Photoshop. I have a basic knowledge of Photoshop and often use it to edit my photographs. However, I definitely spend a lot of time watching YouTube tutorials in order to learn more. I also use iPhoto occasionally to do some quick and simple edits. I am currently taking a Multimedia Video Journalism class as well as an Adobe Premier class in order to develop better video shooting and editing skills. I love everything about visual media!


Creatively I often know exactly how I want the final product to look, but at this point I still lack some of the technical skills to produce the vision I have in my mind. I want to be able to stop relying so much on the automatic settings on my camera by gaining a better knowledge of how my camera works. I also want to learn how to more effectively balance my photography and editing skills in order to translate what I see into a completed physical image. As I complete this course I hope to gain a greater confidence in my abilities as a photographer.