Introducing the #MyPositive Campaign

This past fall, a friend and classmate of mine came to me with the seedling idea for a new social media campaign that she envisioned. These were the first days of the project I would like to introduce to all of you today; the #My Positive Campaign.

Now I know you might be saying what does that mean? Well, I will turn that right back on you. That is what this campaign is all about, you. But for a bit of background, I have asked Makenna Jansen, the brains behind the #MyPositive Campaign, to guest-write a Blog Post to introduce the subject.

The #MyPositivity campaign is a statement designed to showcase to the world life and body positivity messages. The campaign was created to allow everyone to share the positives within themselves and their lives. We have seen an increase in body positivity messages in the last couple of years, but #MyPositivity is different from the others because it focuses in on personal happiness and positive thoughts, actions, and feelings without no emphasis on comparisons.

When we look at Meghan Trainor’s song “All About That Bass” we see that while she is trying to promote a self-love message for women who the fashion world would consider “plus-sized,” by emphasizing “it’s all about that bass”, with the line about “no treble” she is effectively thin-shaming other women. This fat-shaming/thin-shaming battle is one of the things that the #MyPositive campaign hopes to dispel because in reality, everyone has a different body shape and there is no one right or wrong body type. Every person is unique. They have things that make them happy and things that make them who they are.

#MyPositivity works to provide everyone, regardless of age, shape, race, gender identity, sexual orientation, ability, etc…, the opportunity to truly show the world who you are and what you love. We hope that, by sharing the things you love about your life and your self and by sharing positive photos and messages about yourself, we will see people’s personal happiness and self-love levels increase. There is so much wonderfulness that exists in the world, it would be truly a shame if we didn’t all get to partake in each other’s little bit of sunshine and light. So please, go out, take pictures, write poems, and share your images and messages wherever you wish, with the #MyPositive or #MyPositiveCampaign tags. It can be anything. If cooking is your passion, or you love to take pictures, or running is life to you; whatever it is, know that it makes you who you are and we want to see it. Every single human on this planet has a bit of awesome in them that makes them unique and that the world deserves to see whatever that may be.

And remember: don’t compare yourself to others and wish you were different, because if you were any less than who you are now, the world wouldn’t get to share and revel in the pure perfection that makes you, you!

  • Makenna

A Year In Review

Oh 2016, for all your flaws, for all your pitfalls, you have been a pretty cool year.

Though I could use this post to bring to light my own personal political views or to remember some of the celebrities and heroes who passed away this year, or to just complain about 2016 in general, I will not be doing so.

Instead, what I really want to do is to thank all of you for your love and support. Though I started J. Sander Photography in 2015, 2016 was the year in which it really took off. This year I upgraded my camera, I rebranded my entire business and I started a website. Not only that, 2016 was a record year for number of shoots I have ever done. This whole journey started on  a whim and turned into a deep passion and I have you to thank for that.

All of you have been an amazing support to me. Those who have worked with me, thank you for being my muse and creating amazing art with me. Those who have liked and commented and followed me, whether that be here on the website or on Facebook or Instagram, thank you for that. It is your support that keeps me going. Here is to another, even better year.

I have some really cool stuff planned for 2017. In the coming days I will be able to share more about it, so stay tuned!


Do What You Love/Love What You Do

Over the past couple of weeks, I have been thinking into my future, looking at possible career opportunities and job ideas for after I graduate in the Spring of 2018. Being a sociology major, I have been looking at possibilities of going to graduate school and going into some sort of social work or advocacy position. Being the son of two Lutheran pastors, I have debated the possibility of going to seminary and following in their footsteps as a pastor. Being a social media director for multiple student organizations, I have even looked into the possibilities of pursuing that deeper in my future. Being a photographer, I have begun to talk to people deeper in the field of professional photography to see what opportunities I can take advantage of before I graduate so that I can pursue professional photography in some way after graduation.

Suffice to say, I have a lot of different directions I could follow. With so many possibilities I have had to prioritize and decide which I wanted to follow first. Living and being a young adult in this generation, I have felt sort of pressured to find something I can be successful at soon after college. But I have also had a wonderful team of support behind me helping me wade through all of these options.

But, while doing all of this soul-searching, I ran across one video on a friend’s Facebook Page earlier in the month entitled “Purpose” and it just connected with me. So if you are struggling to find something you are passionate about, or you feel that the work you are doing is mundane or the life you’re living isn’t worth it or isn’t all you want it to be, I urge you to watch the video linked below.

One thing I know for certain I want to do with my future is help people. Growing up I didn’t always have a good self-image, and I know a lot of people who feel the same way. I have talked to people about sitting for a shoot with me and they would say, “But John, I’m not pretty enough. I don’t look good enough for that.” Yet, the few I have been able to sit with me anyway come away from it looking at their pictures saying, “These are amazing. You are amazing, John.” I always turn it back on them. “It is not me in those pictures. I only captured what is already there to be captured.” Right now that is my purpose. It may change, but I know that I want to make a difference and this is how I can see to do it.

I hope that wherever you are in your life, you can find and live out your purpose. As hard as it may be to believe, everyone has one. You just need to find it, latch on to it, and never ever let go.

October Update

Hey there friends and fans,

Don’t worry! I’m not dead. I’m still here, but oh am I busy! School started at the end of August and since then I just haven’t had time for much else. But, that doesn’t mean that I haven’t been shooting.

This year I am again a staff photographer for the Linfield Review. So, though I am not doing much in the model photography realm at the moment, I am still working as hard as ever at my craft. Most of my work at the moment is concert photography, and though it comes with its own new set of difficulties, that is part of the fun of it!

A bit about each of these bands:

Zach & Bridget are not only a band, but also a couple! They’re from LA and their music is a beautiful mix. Bridget’s beautiful gypsy voice compliments Zach’s rich baritone roots vocals. Their instrumentation twists around their voices and amazing lyrics (seriously, spend time with them). The finished product is a beautiful folk-influenced sound that is just entrancing. While they have other instruments with them on their albums, they prove time and time again that live, all they need is each other, working off of each other’s sound to create something magical. I recommend listening to their song ‘Blood Red Skies‘ if you want to hear more of what I’m talking about.

The Brightside is a reggae/rock group from Venice Beach, California and they bring the love of SoCal with them wherever they go. Runnin’ is a great example of this. The subtlety of this band’s sound is amazing. Yes, they can rock your socks off, but somehow they give off the exact same perfect, happy vibes whether they’re rocking your socks off or just giving you music to sway to.

Last, but ABSOLUTELY not least, we have We Three, from right here in McMinnville. We Three consists of three of the most talented sibling musicians you can find. But they’re not only amazing instrumentalists, they are also amazing song-writers. Fairy Tale is a great example of this. Not only is the instrumentation amazingly tight, but the harmonies are incredible and the lyrics are absolutely beautiful. Again I recommend spending some time with those lyrics.

Linfield brings some amazing music to campus and it is my absolute joy to capture the views of the music, if not always capturing the sound. I hope to keep you all more updated with what other amazing music comes here that you should be listening to.

I also have some cool new things in the works to get me through the fall & I cannot wait to see what else comes my way. As always, thank you for all the love and support you all give me, and if you want to get in touch about any photography needs, whether it is event photography or model photography, please email me at!

Mackenzie Leggitt

Mackenzie Leggitt
[Blog Post Soundtrack: Marian Hill’s album ‘Sway]

I had shot with Mackenzie once before, but this time I had a brand new camera & I was itching to try it out. We had a lot of the shoot planned, but it was so much fun to shoot that we just decided to keep going. That is where this story begins.

We had been shooting for hours, but we didn’t feel like stopping. Plus there was one more outfit in the backseat & one more place we had wanted to shoot at, so why stop now? So we drove back through Uptown Butte, past Walkerville & continued until we were almost at Moulton Reservoir. On the drive up we were wracking our brains for ideas on how we were going to pull off this next part of the session. How were we going to connect that dress with these surroundings? We were no closer to an answer when we found a good place to stop. So we got out of the car & continued up the road aways, & started shooting. Within five minutes we had both hit our stride. Before another five minutes had passed, we knew what we were doing. We were telling a story. Now all we had to figure out was where this story was leading us.

Even after we concluded that part of the shoot, we continued to debate as to the specifics of the story we had just captured. We boiled it down to this: The young woman in the shots was on her way to a date with her man at nice restaraunt, when all of the sudden… her car broke down. Thankfully she had her phone on her (as all good Generation Z people do) & she was able to call her boyfriend for help.

Admittedly, this story isn’t the next Harry Potter, but hey, what is?
So tell me, do you see the same story we did, or do you believe something else happened here? Leave a Comment below & let me know!

For more pictures from this shoot, visit the J. Sander Photography Facebook Page at

~ John

Welcome to J. Sander Photography

Anne Amie Vineyards - Spring 2016

Hello there friends & fans,

Though you may know the story of how this all came to be, I will tell it to you again.

In May of 2015, I was asked by a friend & co-worker of mine, Emilie, to do a photoshoot for her as the last few weeks of the school year were winding down. I was honored to be asked to do such ‘professional work’ & a couple of days later we set out on what ended up being a six-hour day of photo-shooting & adventuring around Yamhill County (OR).

In the coming weeks I set to work editing the shots from the shoot & when I finally sent them all to Emilie she was so in love with them that she said something to the effect of, “John, these are so good. I could really see you doing this professionally.”

I had never really thought of that. Photography had always been something I had loved. I got my first camera at age 13 & I instantly fell in love with taking photographs. There is just something incredible about being able to capture moments & memories in photographs. But it had always just been for fun. I had never really thought of myself as good enough to really get paid for my work. From that day forward, I have worked at making that a reality.

Skip forward to January of 2016. Inspired by Kenna Allison Photography, I started a Facebook Page called Sander Photography, which I have recently rebranded to J. Sander Photography. I chose Sander Photography because my middle name is Sander and it just had a certain ring to it that I liked. I chose to rebrand because I really wanted to start this site and another company already had

I have been able to do some amazing work with some amazing people and I have so much more currently in the works. This is my passion and it really means the world that I can share it with you all.

Thank you for your support and welcome to the new J. Sander Photography.

~ John S. Christensen