2011 Year In Review

Looking through all the pictures from 2011 is a crazy thing for me. It reminds me of how awesome God is, how blessed I am in life, and how relationships are everything. In just one short year, my photography has changed a bit, I write differently, and so much has happened in my life. It’s great and it’s scary, but I love it so much.

With so much in life changing, God’s grace is always the same.

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven
Ecclesiastes 3:1

Here is 2011 in review. Make sure you let the whole page load before clicking on links or pictures so that they will display correctly.

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Help Portrait

Help Portrait started with an idea brought to light by a Nashville photographer, Jeremy Cowart. Help Portrait is the simple idea of taking a portrait of someone, printing it, and giving it to them. The purpose of this project is to build self-worth in people and to show them that they are worth spending time on and worth making a great portrait for.

The Searcy chapter of Help Portrait was sparked by a tweet to a few photographers that I’ve come to know in town. Since then, so many people have stepped up to make this project happen. It truly has been a blessing. First putting out an idea, receiving so much support by people willing to give their time and talents.

I love this group and have nothing but good to say. It’s truly been a blessing and an honor working with such incredible people.

This first year’s Help Portrait: Searcy wasn’t exactly a smashing success by terms of number of people coming in the door, but it was most definitely a success. The families that did come through were blessed in ways we don’t know. Here’s a behind the scenes perspective:

Here’s the main photographer group. Love them.

This guy is the boss.  :)

We had quite a bit of downtime, so since we already had everything set up… you know. :)

~ Jon


Croquet may be my new favorite sport. Creating your own course is pretty sweet and playing it with good friends in great weather makes for an amazing afternoon. Highly recommended. :)

All in a day’s work.

~ Jon

Flat Rock Fire Painting

The other day a bunch of guys from Harding headed out to flat rock for some camping and hanging out. Through the years, we’ve had a lot of good times out there. I’m a big advocate of getting outside of life’s regular routines and doing something memorable. A lot of times I don’t feel like doing something different, but sitting on the couch doesn’t make much of a story.

~ Jon

Fresh Eyes – Honduras

I’m back from the good ol’ Honduras. It’s been an amazing ride this past week and my mind since then has been constantly thinking of Honduras and the people we interacted with.

I have learned so much. Honduras has shown me some things that I’ve never seen before. I’ve been able to see first hand that God’s church goes much further than my small corner of the world. It’s pretty amazing.

I’ve been thinking about this place so much the last few days but I can’t seem to put these thoughts to words. Maybe I’ll come up with more complete thoughts sometime in the future.  :)  In short– God is good.

Here’s a brief synopsis in pictures of the week:

We became quite familiar with this bus by the end of the week.

Building a house for a family.

Oscar explaining the task at hand (painting) to the fearless co-leader Amy.

Painting… (before) / (after)

More painting.  What a great color.  :)

Driving away from the orphanage was incredibly hard. The kids were just amazing.

We did a lot with the students at the Baxter Institute.

What’s cooler than cool?

This group. :)

~ Jon

Honduras bound

In 28 hours, our Honduras group will be piling into vans heading to the airport to begin our week-long journey to Honduras. I’m co-leading a group of 22 super great people on a week-long Spring Break Missions trip to Tegucigalpa, Honduras.

There’s been so many meetings, fundraisers, and letters sent and now the time to leave is almost here. It’s still hasn’t yet hit me, but I know it will be awesome. :)

Most of the people:

God has blessed this group so much through everything that goes into doing a trip like this. We’ve had to switch some plans and change details around a lot, raise a ton of money, etc., but here we are so close to leaving.

Keep our team and Honduras in your prayers this coming week! It will be a new experience and I’m hoping and praying that this trip will both be a huge encouragement to the people of Honduras that we’ll be interacting with while also showing us a more complete view of God’s love and the world outside our bubble.

~ Jon

…and of course there’s the obligatory crazy picture.  ;)


Pre-Thanksgiving Day Cider

A tradition that spans many years in the Yoder family is the making of apple cider.  Each year, we get a ton of apples from an orchard, bring them to a apple cider factory, have it go through the cider process, and then bottle it.

I’ve been gaining more appreciation for family traditions these past few years.  The making of apple cider is a neat fun thing to watch, brings a lot of the cousins together, and has become a thanksgiving day staple.  Delicious.

All the apples.

Putting together the apples to be crushed.

The juicing of the apples.

Bottling the cider.

Taste testing is always important.  :)

Happy thanksgiving!

~ Jon

Orange and Blue

Boder!  :P

What what! :-) So this past Monday was super exciting for me. I’m really excited about all the opportunities that being beau’d will bring. I’m just hoping that I’ll be able to spread Christ’s love through this and encourage these awesome girls.

Since I’m having trouble explaining this situation to (fictional audience?) people not in Harding and people in Harding, I’m just going to stop here. :-P

Hear my prayer and answer,
I am poor and needy.
Guard my life for I am devoted to you.
Hear my prayer, O Lord, and
my cry for mercy, in this day of
trouble I will call to you.
Psalm 86

~ Jon

New Host, Artistry

So this is the first post on the new server!  That’s exciting, I guess.  ;-)

I changed my webhost from cookiehost to dreamhost for cheap-plan-expired-and-new-one-by-same-host-couldn’t-be-found reasons.  :P  I don’t really have high expectations for dreamhost, but they somehow advertise the plan as having unlimited storage.  I don’t know if there is fineprint for people like me, but that sounds like a good place to backup everything on my computer.  This would be really slow at home, but one upside of college internet is that they have a good connection, lots of people downloading usually, but not many people uploading things at once, which means upload speeds of around 1.2MB/s, which is pretty stinking good in my book.  =)

Enough geek talk.  What I just said was that I changed the location of where jonyoder.com is hosted, and then other things are happening too.  ;-)  As you may have noticed, the blog is working, but the gallery and never-visited camp forums are still not working.  I’ll fix them sometime.  :)

My initial attempt and mastery of art.

My initial attempt and mastery of art.

Here is my first picture that I drew using a wacam tablet.  It’s definitely a different way of drawling, and some things are weird, but it was definitely a fun adventure.  If nothing else, it motivated me to make a really ridiculous picture.  :-)

Also, Happy Valentine’s day!  If nothing else, tell your mom how great she is.  I know I will!  =)