Connie Hanks Photography // // "Because of the routines we follow, we often forget that life is an ongoing adventure" Maya Angelou quote

Just Do It! (it’s not just for Nike)


Taking classes, learning, growing, evolving… that is beyond important to my well being and personal fulfillment. I’ve loved education since I was a little girl. Honestly, I can’t remember the last time I went a full year without taking a class of some sort! From getting my MBA to Certification in Photography, from “Cooking Your First Thanksgiving Dinner” to kick-boxing, from knife skills to scrapbooking, from the Perfect Cocktail Party to painting, and everything in-between, I love to learn. Seriously, I haven’t met many classes that I didn’t love and grow from!

And that streak continues with all the classes I’ve taken at CreativeLive! Have you caught any CL classes yet? They’re fantastic! Live broadcasts are free, but I’ve actually purchased access to several classes because the content is just that valuable! I’m gonna tell you about one class in particular… so keep reading!

Have you noticed some changes here at Clicky Chick Creates? I recently participated in CreativeLive’s “Build a Successful Creative Blog” class taught by the über spunky, smart, adorable, fun and knowledgable April Bowles-Olin of Blacksburg Belle. April’s class covered tons of great topics about creative blogging, not just goals and writing, but deeper discussions including finding your voice, utilizing social media, fostering relationships, taking daily steps (no matter how small) to get closer to your goals and so much more!

Connie Hanks Photography // // Seize the Sweetness Kinda Day!

The great thing about constantly taking classes is all the new information I’m exposed to and bits and pieces I put together along the way. The tragic part of taking so many classes is it’s way more fun to take the classes and less fun to actually do the work! But April’s class was so inspiring, and the community that transpired from the student chat during the class, combined to create a fantastic ball of energy! Some of the messages that came through, loud and clear, that I decided I had to take immediate action on included:

1. Get your face on your page!

Did you notice the left side bar changes? See me smiling at you?! Here I am again… Hi, sugar!


2. Get an opt-in email list!

Have you subscribed to the Clicky Chick Creates email list? For signing up, you’ll get a downloadable list of “7 Must-Have Kid Birthday Photos” to help you get your game plan for the next birthday! Sign up HERE!


3. Create a great freebie download!

Yup, get your hands on the super awesome “7 Must-Have Kid Birthday Photos” for opting-in to the email list! I’m pretty proud of it 🙂


4. Make it easy to stay connected

How about the social media icons in the left sidebar? I’d love to connect with you!

facebook pinterest twitter

youtube bloglovin flickr

5. Just DO IT!

Throughout the class, April gave us loads of information and knowledge on how to do what we need to do. Lots of info. A plethora. Books worth. Some of my favorite words of wisdom from April can summarize an easily digestible plan to move forward:

  • Take it one step at a time: determine what your priorities are so you can focus on one step at a time
  • Set B&W goals: accomplish those first, then move onto adding new goals
  • Don’t aim for perfection: if at the end of the day you can say “I did at least one thing today to get closer to my goal!” then you’re doing good! (Click to Tweet)

Sounds simple enough, right?! So just DO IT! I’m glad I’ve made the changes that I did, and yet there are still a ton more I’d like to make. I had plenty of roadblocks (um, excuses, reasons, whatever you want to call them) as to why some had not been done. For example:

  • I couldn’t send out from my MailChimp account until I had a PO Box (I’m just not comfortable sharing my home address with the public), so it took a while, but I finally made time to get to the Post Office.
  • I prefer my face behind the lens, not on my sidebar! But putting myself, my face in particular, gives Clicky Chick Creates a little more personality!

So what are you doing to move your blog forward? There are tons of tips and tricks in April’s class and on her blog, as well as tons of other resources all over the web.

I came across CreativeLive last year and rarely does a week go by that I haven’t checked out a classroom or two! My two favorite channels are “Photo & Video” as well as “Craft & Maker.” Both are perfect for my worlds, but they do have a other channels, so check them out regardless of what creative world you live in 🙂

Connie Hanks Photography // // "Because of the routines we follow, we often forget that life is an ongoing adventure" Maya Angelou quote

If you landed on my page following the blog tour, you came to me from K9 Studio Photography (aren’t Kristina’s images fantastic?! I’m in love with her conceptual Doggy-Angels!) and now you’ll be headed to my sweet and amazing eco-crafting friend, Gina Zee. I’ve actually known Gina for years and have enjoyed watching her evolution as an artsy and eco-crafter – go tour her site, you won’t be disappointed!

Enjoy the rest of the hop! Lots of great blogging tips and take aways being shared via the “What #BelleLive Taught Me” blog tour! {Click to Tweet}

As always, thanks for stopping by. I know this post was a bit meatier than my usual pretty pictures and creative crafts, so thanks for sticking with me! Have a joyful, creative, blessing filled day! And if you haven’t signed-up for the Clicky Chick Creates email list yet, whatcha waiting for? You’ll get “7 Must-Have Kid Birthday Photos” printable photo tips as my thank you 🙂
Live creatively!

E Q U I P M E N T   U S E D  (Affiliate Links)
Canon 60D
Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8
Tamron 18-270mm f/3.5-6.3
Check out all my camera bag goodies here!

Connie Hanks Photography // // stamped and embossed tag with additional background stamping

True Stamp 2014 – 50% off for a limited time!!

What do all of these projects have in common? Any guesses? Did you say stamping? Of course you did!

You love stamps. How did I know? Because whether you’re a card maker, an art journaler, or a scrapbooker, stamps are cost-effective, versatile, and FUN! But do you ever look at your ever-growing collection of stamps and inks and say, “HELP!”?

When it comes right down to it, nothing is better for revving up that mojo than learning from “the masters.” Watching real experts demonstrate unique techniques and projects is a sure-fire way to rev up the inspiration. But who has the time or money to travel all over the country to take classes?

Well, you don’t have to! It’s back… True Stamp!

truestamp2014 small
True Stamp is the only event to offer the best in LIVE stamping instruction, brought right to you via your computer. That’s right, no need to pack up all your supplies. No need to leave the family. No need to eat lousy convention center food. Instead, the classes come right to YOU. Just log in from your computer and be treated to classes from six amazing sponsors, teaching you the latest and greatest skills and techniques to get your creative stampy juices flowing. And it’s all recorded so you can watch again and again after the event! Almost 500 people attended last year’s event, and I can’t wait for April 5 to see what’s in store.

If you’re ready to roll up your sleeves and get stamping, then check out True Stamp here.

And what could possibly make it even better? Getting all of this at a discount! GET 50% OFF WITH THE CODE “LOVE” THROUGH 3/17!

Join six amazing instructors on April 5 for a full day of stampy fun! I’m already signed up and hope to “see” you there!

As always, thanks for stopping by. Have a joyful, creative, blessing filled day!
Live creatively!

Connie Hanks Photography // // Valentine's BINGO, sweet tarts, candy, hearts, love, xoxo, hug me

10 on 10 – February // Heart of Hearts

Connie Hanks Photography // // Valentine's BINGO, sweet tarts, candy, hearts, love, xoxo, hug me

Valentine’s BINGO with Sweet Tarts

Did you have a lovely Valentine’s day yesterday? Whether you were romantically swept off your feet, spent the day loving your kiddos, had a quiet day reflecting what love means to you, ignored the holiday altogether, or anything in between, I hope your day was absolutely lovely!

So speaking of Valentine’s, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to focus on hearts for this months 10 on 10. What is 10 on 10? An awesome project I was invited to join for 2014 where we photograph on or near the 10th of the month and post 10 (or more – I like more!) photos as part of a blog hop/circle. No matter where you start in the circle, you’ll end up back where you started and have visited all the posts in the circle.

Now onto hearts… Heart of hearts. Cliche? Who, me? February, Valentine’s specifically, only rolls around once a year, right?! So here we go…

Connie Hanks Photography // // heart made of sprinkles, sprinkled heart, red, pink, white

Tiny heart shaped sprinkles

Connie Hanks Photography // // Valentine banner, handmade

Valentine’s day banner – Recollections

Connie Hanks Photography // // Valentine's Day breakfast of fresh strawberry pancakes and fresh homemade strawberry greek yogurt parfaits

Valentine’s morning breakfast – fresh strawberry pancakes and strawberry greek yogurt parfait with granola

Connie Hanks Photography // // Valentine's day heart bagel

Valentine’s heart shaped bagels

Connie Hanks Photography // // heart beads necklace, heart shaped

Heart beads in heart shape

Connie Hanks Photography // // Pandora bracelet, key and lock, hearts

Pandora key and lock – both with hearts

Connie Hanks Photography // // heart shaped paper clip, Eiffel tower, pretty paper

Intertwined paper clip hearts, Eiffel Tower pretty paper

Connie Hanks Photography // // adorable Valentine Tag handmade by Simmone D. for ScrapHappy swap

Gorgeous tag received from my friend Simmone D. in Louisiana – super adorable and love all the hearts!!

Connie Hanks Photography // // Love Tube, Daisy Troop, Self-Esteem, Self-Respect, Thoughtful, petal,

Daisy Troop “Love Tubes” – full blog post coming soon!

Connie Hanks Photography // // heart, hands, silhouette, sunset, little girl hands

My 7-yr olds heart hands

Connie Hanks Photography // // Love Shadow with hearts

Shadow of Love

Connie Hanks Photography // // Valentine's Day cupcake with heart shaped bokeh

Cupcake and bokeh – yum!!

Did you visit all the photographers on our 10 on 10 blog hop last month (January)? Really beautiful photos from  amazing photographers! It’s a small group, so make sure to make the rounds – you won’t be disappointed. Truly, I’m honored to be amongst such talented and gifted women! This month, you’ll be heading to Photography by Glenda – her images are gorgeous!! Be sure to leave some comment love!

As always, thanks for stopping by. Have a joyful, creative, blessing filled day!
Live creatively!

PS. To see previous 10 on 10 posts, click here.


For all photos in this post, Canon 60D was used with Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 and Canon 50mm f/1.4 lenses. For more information on equipment I use regularly, visit my “What’s In My Bag” post. Please leave any questions or comments below – I love hearing from you!