Dreams Should Be Lived #MyFirstPostRevisited

Who am I? I’m a Swedish girl with an obsession of horses, residing in Nevada (USA.) I spend as much time as I possibly can outdoors; hiking, camping, looking at wild horses, or playing with my mustang. I LOVE taking road trips. I’m a dreamer, the kind that goes after her dreams.

My grandmother gave me my first camera when I was five years old, and I’ve been taking photos ever since; different cameras, different people, different countries, but it’s highly unusual to see me without my camera.

I only have a couple addictions that I don’t want to live without; strong coffee in the morning, wide open spaces, the joy of hearing my daughters laugh, country music, the pleasure of being around a brave horse, and ending each day in peace.

I recently moved to Reno (NV,) and I am in the process of taking my photography business to the next level. Horses is my number one passion, and have been since before I could walk. Naturally there’s been a focus on horses in my photography business as well. Lately I’ve discovered a demand for other forms of outdoor portraits, and after some consideration decided to start all over with a new business plan, a new website (actually two; one gallery, and one blog,) and do it under a new name.

It’s a little scary to start all over, when you already have a working concept, but I know that I would regret it if I didn’t follow my gut instinct in this. Imagination is the only limit, and I’ve always had a vivid imagination.

One of my personal goals is to ride The Tevis Cup, (the worlds toughest endurance race.) I hope to ride my Virginia Range Mustang, that I adopted in December of last year. It’s a long term goal, and it’s going to take us at least two years to get there. It’s certainly a very exciting project, I love every minute I get to spend with him. He is a real character, and you will definitely see, and read about our journey here on the blog.


Maria Jansson Photography specializes in Fine Art Prints of Western Landscapes, Outdoor Action Events, Ranch Portraits, Expressive Outdoor Portraits; of people, dogs, and horses. Did I mention that I would love to meet you, and your family; four, and two legged?! Don’t hesitate to contact me at MariaJanssonPhotography@gmail.com, to get a customized quote for your photo session. Imagination is the only limit! 

You can find photos from photo sessions, in the gallery, along with beautiful Fine Art Prints.

You can read more about the photos, offers, and upcoming events here on my blog.

Of course you will find me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter as well. Let’s get to know each other!

Feel free to share my posts, and leave comments, I will get back to you!  See you around!

All the best,

Maria Jansson


PS. I apologize in advance for grammatical errors. English is not my first language, but I am working hard to improve my sometimes horrible grammar.

The White Horse

White Arabian Horse Photograph by Maria Jansson

My mom never taught me to be waiting for some prince on a white horse to swipe me off my feet. – Tyra Banks


My mom didn’t teach me that either, something I am very grateful for. She did tell me that every single person living on this planet is responsible for their own happiness. It took me along time to fully understand what she meant.

I’ve always been mesmerized by white horses, that’s a different story. They are the image of fairytales and magic to me. My very first horse was a white horse (not the beautiful horse in the photo.) His name was Draumur. He was an Icelandic Horse. I saved 10 years to be able to purchase him. He was my childhood dream, that become reality when I was in my early 20’s. I have a photo of Draumur, from the night I got him, in my office. I look at Draumur every time I need a reminder that everything is possible, if you are willing to pay the price, work towards your dream without giving up. This single photo puts me in a positive, winning state of mind. It works independently without caring about the challenges that comes and goes in my every day life. This photo helps me to choose to react to situations that comes up, in a way that takes me closer to my goals.

It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters. – Epictetus

Right now my dreams are about a homestead on a few acres. Well, it’s not just a dream, it’s a goal, that I am working towards every day. Do you have a dream that you are working towards right now? I would love to hear about it!



PS. The horse in the photo is a senior Arabian/Mustang Cross named Diamond. He was standing up to his knees in deep mud when I first met him, 5 years ago. He had been standing there for 6 months. After some rehabilitation he became a wonderful, happy ranch horse. I think his happy state of mind shines through the photo. What do you think?

How to create a vision for success

What can I do right now that takes me closer to my dreams?

This blog post came to me this morning, after being asked for the millioned time about my participation in a longterm project, that I’ve been hesitant to commit to. I am not afraid of commitment at all. Decision making is usually easy for me. I like the security of longterm projects. I like to say yes, I try to say yes as often as I possibly can. Commitment mean something to me, and if I say that I am going to do something, I will do it. I like to have the facts first, so that I can keep my promise.

In this particular case I’ve been collecting information. For several months actually. In the beginning, the first time I was asked, I thought this project might be something that I could do. Not knowing exactly what it would take to do a good job, I decided to learn more, before starting something I could not finish. I soon realized that the time commitment would be much larger than I was lead to believe. I would have to work with numbers/math several hours/day (it’s not among my favorite things to do,) I would have to stay within cellphone reception (strongly dislike that commitment,) I would have to stay inside several hours/day (hhhhuuuiee, me?) I would be forced to ignore spontaneous photo opportunities, to be available for the project 6 days/week. During the learning period, which could be extensive (months,) I would have to spend those hours in a house where a smoker smokes cigarettes inside every day, with my daughter. Watching the other people involved in the project, I notice that they are constantly stressed out, frustrated, agitated, angry, resentful, and in bad health. If I choose to join the project there would be economical benefits for my family. (As an artist, I never know how big my paycheck is going to be from month to month.)

So, what should I do? Could I do this, and keep my sanity? Could I do this and still actively, be a positive force in my daughter’s life? Could I do this, and claim that I am still working towards my dream (being the best mother I can be/living a healthy life/making a living out of my photography/growing most of my food) ?  We all know that kids doesn’t do what we tell them to, but imitate what we actually do. I want my daughter to commit to her dreams, more than anything else. Find out what they are, commit to them, and hold on to them. What does my example tell her?

I want to be a responsible mother, making the decisions that will benefit my daughter the most. It’s my responsibility to make sure she has a warm place to live, clothes on her body, food, and a positive/healthy environment, where she can grow into her full potential. My daughter’s wellbeing in all these areas will always be my highest priority.

Like I mentioned in a recent post, I was a Preschool/Kindergarten Teacher, before I had my little girl. I decided to quit my job, and look for other ways to support us when I found out that I was pregnant. To be able to spend as much time as possible with my child. Since then I’ve worked with several different projects (horses, photography, ranching, gardening, and some teaching,) that allowed me to bring my daughter with me. I’m genuinely interested in a sustainable lifestyle, and I’m dreaming about having a few acres of my own one day. I’m not in a position to buy us a piece of land today, but it’s an active dream that I work towards every day. I want to grow the majority of our food myself, and I am learning as much as I can about organic gardening.

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Nature – Our Favorite Classroom/Office/Playground


Creations starts with a vision, then it takes place in the physical universe. Bend the universe to your will. Not my words, even though I wish they were. Randy Gage, said that in one of his books. Its a phrase that’s been stuck in my head since I first heard it.

It’s physics, really. You get excited, you see it, taste it, feel it – you’re motivated! You enlist the excitement of the people around you. People like being around positive people. When you really have a vision, people wants to be a part of it. A healthy lifestyle is something I am passionate about. So is my photography. My life have never been about mediocrity. It’s had UPS, and DOWNS. I’m striving towards getting more balance, in all areas.

Joy is my ultimate measure of success. Seeing happy people, that loves what they do makes me wanna know more. The opposite drives me away.

My first blog Working On My Dream (I do not own that domain anymore,) pretty much defined what my adult life have been about. What I want it to be about. Killing the inner voice accusing me for being selfish. Because I realize that to be generous, with myself, my time, my affection, my love, all that I am, I need to love myself. I need to love what I am doing. I am not a good actor. I can not, and need not have a job, (or a relationship) that I am not 100% happy with. That is something I believe.

I believe I deserve happiness. I believe that you deserve happiness. I also believe that it is an active choice that we all have to take. It doesn’t come by luck. We have to choose it. We have to work for it. We have to hold on to it. We have to flow with it. Sometimes we have to defend it. Even when it’s scary to do so.  

Kill the distractions, don’t focus on the things you can’t control. Turn things around. What do I control? What can I do right now that takes me closer to my dreams? Right now, in April 2016 I’m in California. I’m in Northern California to be more specific. Northern California is amazing this time of the year.

What I can do;  get up early every morning. I get up 4-4.30am seven days/week, to get as much work done on my computer, that I possibly can, before my daughter wakes up. Editing photos, replying to emails, marketing my work, networking, making sure my photo orders are properly taken cared of, that my clients are happy, writing blog posts like this one, and planning photo session takes time.

When my daughter wakes up I want to give her my attention. After breakfast I take my daughter, dog, and camera with me outside and learn everything I can about California’s beauty. I can put my teaching credentials, and passion for the great outdoors to use, and implant a love, and care for the environment in my young daughters heart. I can teach her Swedish (my native language,) while doing this. Maybe most important, I have time to really listen to her, to get under her skin, while we’re exploring nature together. We have quality time to talk to each other, without distractions (like TV, or even phones, since we often take photos where there’s little, or no cellphone reception..)

Time is my most treasured asset. This time, when my daughter is growing up, will never come back. It’s exclusive. It’s now. 

I can keep my family healthy by making sure they get enough exercise, drink enough water, and eat healthy food. I can share my photos with people that might not get the chance to experience the incredible nature that I am blessed to be surrounded by. While interacting with my online community, and the people I meet while taking photos, I can improve my English. California is a great place to improve my gardening skills as well, taking me one step closer to live a more self sustainable life. There’s so much I can do!

I can choose to see all these things that I can do, and focus on them. I firmly believe that we get more of what we choose to focus our mind on. (Focus on your challenges, and guess what? You’ll get more challenges coming your way.) What can you do? If you actively choose to focus only on what’s available to you, not on the obstacles. What can you do right now, to get closer to the life of your dreams? Tell me in a comment, and HOLD THAT VISION. Keep your vision in focus, take it with you. Write it down, talk about it, turn your vision into reality.

Thoughts for your Thursday morning 😉 Enjoy this amazing day!

Love & Light, Always


PS. I’m holding on to my vision 😉

PS 2. Your comments, and ideas are always encouraged. You can leave a comment in the comment box below, or if you’d rather send me a private email, feel free to do so mariajanssonphotography@gmail.com.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Ornate

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Ornate.”

In your photo this week, share something unabashedly ornate — where it’s clear that the creators pulled no stops and went all out. Whether it’s a breathtaking triumph or a total train wreck, I can’t wait to see what you come up with.


I was born in Mora, in the province of Dalarna, Sweden. Also the home of the Dala Horse. It’s colorful appearance and intricate pattern have pulled its strings on my imagination, since before I said my first word. These wooden horses are handmade, and comes in all different shapes, and colors. The one above is the classical color.

I have two small Dala Horses with me whenever I travel. It has become a symbol of home for me. When my daughter and I are exploring new areas, and things are exciting, she has something familiar to look at before she goes to bed. It has a soothing effect on her. Just as it had for me when I was a little girl, and went to bed looking at my Dala Horse, dreaming about one day having a real horse 🙂


PS. I totally gave my blog a makeover today. What do you think? Tell me!

Chase Your Dreams

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Every morning you have two choices- continue to sleep with dreams, or wake up and chase your dreams. The choice is yours!


I know what I’m going to do! Go ahead and have an amazing day!