ABBY KEENAN

We've decided to start a new series called "the friendly ghost" where will be interviewing our friends, our mentors, our heroes & you guys! And the first feature couldn't be better. This week, I sent over some questions to my good friend, Abby Keenan.

Abby has been my friend for a few years now. The type of friend who you're not really sure how or why or when you became friends all you know is one day you were friends and that's all that mattered. Abby moved to LA riiiight about the same time I left. I was so bummed because I was looking forward to this for months. Having another friend there. I think she was bummed too because she didn't have a ton of friends out there either. 

But this is why I love Abby. She went out to LA all on her own and within weeks had finessed her way into her dream job, taking photos for the LAKERS. Yep. That's right. The Lakers. And she did it all on her own too. I remember her telling stories of sneaking into media areas or just pretending like she was supposed to be there, until months later, she secured a real job.
If you don't believe me, check out her Instagram @akeenster. You'll see her rubbing elbows with Lebron, sideline chilling with Kimye, and her beautiful tributes to Los Angeles & Kobe Bryant as she was up close and personal with the city as they mourned such a heavy loss. 
But Abby's insanely cool job is the least cool thing about her. She's talented beyond words, she's always in the know on whats dope no matter if its music, movies, or whatever shoe is "in" right now.
 
My favorite thing about her though is that she is the "canyon drive" type of friend. The friend who doesn't care how long it's been since you've seen them, or how long you've even known them. She's the type of friend to pick you up on a rainy day and take you to get ice cream.
the best type of friend.
Here are Abby's answers to my questions:
1. When have you been the most afraid?
I feel like I was the most afraid the third week I moved to LA. I was pretty settled in my apartment alone and realized I had just graduated from college and moved to another state with absolutely no job. I knew pretty much knew no one and had one “option” for a job that I didn’t even know existed. I didn’t really even have a real potential meeting with the one option at the Lakers I was hoping for. Luckily the fear didn’t last too long but it felt completely bottomless.
2. When were you most proud of yourself?
I think I was most proud of myself when I completed my final capstone project for college. It is a collective portfolio of all the stories behind all the photos I’ve taken. I am hoping to release it soon :) I feel like it really reflects my story and all the little stories in between the photos that mean so much to me. I also never felt like I was ever going to finish school.
 
3. How do you handle comparing yourself to others on social media?
Comparing is very easy to do but I feel like I have always felt that social media is more inspiring than negative. When I feel myself getting negative on myself I quickly figure out which people or people I follow may make me feel that way and quickly realize I need to be happy for them. Plus I love diversity and seeing all the quirks and random things people are into. The more I see that the more I am inspired to be more myself and not a copy and paste.
 
4. Go-to karaoke song?
easy.
Torn-Natalie Imbruglia when I am with the girls
Can't Tell Me Nothing- Kanye when I am w the crew
 
5. Who are some women who inspire you and why?
My mother, my sisters, my grandmother, 
Maddie Wunderli and her mom Diane
Ashley Sobtka and her mom Stephanie
Anne Parkes Armistead, Julia & Erika Mahterian, Madi Du Pre, Addison Lamb, Carlee Holmoe, Mckall Willis, Kacey Musgraves, Vivian Meyer, Rihanna, Oprah, Billie Eilish, Hailey Balwin, Cara Van Brocklin, Kylie, Kendall, Kim, 
 
6. Do you have a "mantra" or a favorite quote that you live by?
My two favorites are:
“To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift” - Steve Prefontaine
 
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” - Aristotle
 
7.  What was your go-to outfit in Elementary School? Junior High? High School? Elementary school: didn’t wear jeans till 7th grade so soccer shorts with sliders under and a Gap orange hoodie w vans w pink frogs all over them (only because my mom wouldn’t buy me the lace-up knee-high converse)
Middle school: Bad flared jeans, discounted Hollister tee but mostly the stolen Nike Barcelona hoodie from my older sisters closet
High school: what did I not try. Mostly bad missed matched boutique items paired with black skinnies and white high top converse-shoe game hadn’t kicked in yet. J crews pull was too strong as well.
 
8. Give us a 'hot take" or an unpopular opinion
Hot take: I don’t love Christmas. The religious mean and symbolism is beautiful don’t get me wrong but every year I grow to dislike it more. I don’t know if it has to do w Utah’s obsession with it or the start of the cold season. The music I can’t stand I even start to count down the days till it is done. The summer is where I thrive and the Fourth of July is a true day of joy and celebration in my eyes. My love for Valentine's day is truly unmatched but that’s for another day.
 
9.Describe a perfect day
Wow, a perfect day. Start with a long run on the beach with my dad and then having a good breakfast burrito w the nephews and niece. A good nap followed by a late large lunch of a big crunchy sandwich filled w salt and vinegar chips and a Dr. Pepper ten. After lunch its a drive up the canyon on a late June day. Perfect music queued up and the four best friends anyone could want in the back. A quick small picnic/campfire up American Fork canyon between AF (American Fork) and Provo in this magical spot I’ll never forget I went to with mads and Ashley. Dinner is my mom's homemade mashed potatoes w her famous cranberry chicken followed by her Chocolate lasagna -cool whip, Oreos and chocolate pudding. I watch La La Land with a cute boy and fall asleep. The end.
 
10. If you could have your own Billboard that says anything you want, what would it say?
A billboard what a great question.
 
“Put your phone down, be present for once in your life. You’re welcome.”
 
11. Who makes you laugh the hardest?
 My brother and cousin Eric. Their impressions make me cry on the floor.
 
12. What is the feeling you miss? 
I miss the perspective of high school sometimes. I was one to always be wanting to be older and done but there were plenty of days and nights where I truly could not see past Friday night and I kind of miss that. It’s a bubble effect mindset but it’s what made things dramatic and I miss that. I miss little planned events being all that would occupy my boy crazy mind. I was a hard worker but loved that I could never see my photography going where it is today. I love and miss the naiveness. There are too many worries and stresses that are 6 months on the radar, a year down the road and so on. I miss being stressed about a paper due in a week.
 
13. What is your favorite thing about yourself?
 My favorite thing about myself is that I truly cannot feel anything halfway. In every way, I feel something 110% or nothing at all. I can’t fake feel anything and I can’t pretend I don’t feel for something when I am very passionate about it. I don’t know where the compassion comes from but I am beyond grateful I have it for I feel it makes me a better friend, daughter, and companion.
- AK