The golden gate bridge in a bed of clouds with the San Fransisco city in the back. “Like the bridge, joy will push through other feelings and pop out above everything else. Joy holds strong when it comes to life while also putting everything else in a better light then before it came in,” Nate Johnstone wrote. “Joy puts a perspective on things that allows us to view life in a better and happier manner. Like the red of the bridge, it reflects to others around and spreads out into the rest of the world.”
From the Amalfi Coast to the California Coast, Channels readers share photographs of their joy
The Channels Engagement Project | Fall 2022
November 14, 2022
This semester, The Channels invited readers to submit a photo of what brings them joy. Our goal was to include images that involve our readers and showcase a visual layout with captions.
The sunset outside of Lacey Peter’s house. “They are always different and beautiful. This is a fall sunset and they are my personal favorites,” Peters wrote.
The sunset on Oct. 3 at City College. “It was just so pretty I had to take a picture,” Rebekah Miller wrote.
The sunset on April 26 at Mesa Lane beach in Santa Barbara, Calif. “I remember I was happy when I took it, also I like watching sunsets and surfing,” Sebastian Thilly wrote.
Birds flying out of a highway 101 bridge north of Goleta, Calif. “Golden hour in the fall along the central coast is a special kind of beautiful and the casual adventure of parking off the side of the freeway and stepping into a piece of California history provides an immediate mental escape,” Kyle Hernandez wrote. “Oftentimes it comes with a shift in perspective to reset and appreciate the pieces of life that often become monotonous.”
Alexia Ruiz’s 14-year- old family dog Rocco, at a field near her house where he enjoys running according to Ruiz. “He’s the sweetest boy and we’re so lucky to have him,” Ruiz wrote.
Laura Schilling’s kittens, Princess Cici and Mr. Pants cuddled together in October in San Jose, Calif. “The sweetest little creatures, snuggling together,” Schilling wrote. “I’m so lucky to have them in my life.”
2-year-old Milo, Maya Panizzoni’s lion head dwarf bunny. Milo was the Easter bunny on Sunday, April 17.
Tippy, an 8-year-old Yorkshire Terrier in the middle of playing fetch at Marco Anthony Zell’s front yard. Zell describes Tippy as a licensed emotional support dog who does his job and beyond. “Despite having two surgeries (ACL Reconstruction and Meniscectomy) on my left knee in less than a year, Tippy has brought nothing but joy and happiness to my family and I,” Zell wrote. “I went from being depressed and struggling mentally and physically to receiving unconditional love from a Yorkshire terrier.”
2-year-old Goose enjoying the waves with his owner Shalana Erlich at Ocean Beach, San Diego, Calif. “I love my dog Goose more than anything in this entire world,” Erlich wrote. “If joy were to take a physical form I believe it would manifest in the shape of my golden boy.”
Amanda Jacobs’ one-and-a-half year old black pug Louie brings her all the joy in the world. In this photo he is dressed up with his lei and ready to party. “He is my best friend and a little chaos gremlin,” Jacobs wrote.
Mama Cocobear and her baby Kodeebear smiling at their owner Lyn Paulos in October. “These are my loves, my children, my sanity,” Paulos wrote. “After a very difficult pandemic isolation they have offered pure love only a dog can give.”
Dennis Gagnon’s in-law’s dogs, Cosmo and Stardust Engelhart. “They were asked ‘Who wants to go for a walk?’ Cosmo responded by jumping up, with all four feet off the ground,”Gagnon wrote.
Sofi, Spencer Sherman’s golden retriever back when she was a puppy. “Whenever I see Sofi, my heart opens completely. She is such a perfect expression of what it means to love and be loved,” Sherman wrote. “The fact that two species that are so different can understand, cooperate, and embrace one another simply blows my mind. She licks my nose, and I have no mind left at all, only overflowing love.”
Natali Clark-Ruiz and her cat Bruce Wayne on Oct. 22 at her home in Santa Barbara, Calif. “He brings me joy because he wakes me up with kisses in the morning,” Clark-Ruiz wrote.
Jaci Ventura’s six-month-old puppy Bella in April. “She’s my best friend and anytime I see her I have a huge smile on my face,” Ventura wrote. “She knows when I feel down. Overall, she’s my best friend.”
A woman petting Luna outside of the Isla Vista Market in Goleta, Calif. “Animals are little balls of joy, no matter the breed or type of animal. I have never had my own pet, so coming in contact with other people’s animals sends a little spike of serotonin throughout my body, especially when they seem as happy as this dog does. While it is always quite fun to pet the cat or dog you see on the street or meet at someone’s home, animals also represent a part of nature that humans can’t really relate to,” Alena Mauhs wrote. “Nature is a very healing aspect of this world, and immersing yourself as much as you can will bring you to see that. Animals and pets also have this ability in a less immersive sense, but more of a comforting one. Even if they don’t know you, like the dog in the picture, they will still give you love.”
James Ty Murray standing with a field of cows. This photo brings him joy because “I love cows!” he wrote.
The Associated Student Government Board for the 2022-23 school year in Montecito, Calif. Back row from left to right: Nate Kajani, Lexa Welch, Emelie Beckman, Jonny Salmeron, Raphaela Griffith, Chernor Diallo and Joey Burns. Front row from left to right: Carys Goldsmith, Andrianina Rajosera, Emma Safahi, Divya Ramesh, Evie Pazos Ramirez, Elizabeth Wilemer, Paige White and Nick Hernandez. Not pictured, Robert Roysner. “This is the first time the ASG has had a full board in a number of years. We’re a vast melting pot of all kinds of ethnicities, nationalities, beliefs, interests, and personalities,” Ramesh wrote. “Besides being a team working together to represent SBCC students, we are also a group of friends – you can often find us getting up to our usual antics in the Student Senate Room!” (jimmy)
Members of the Phi Theta Kappa chapter, from left to right Asiana Weddington, Carys Goldsmith, Emelie Beckman, Maya Brundage, Nadia Shahbaz, Emili Sasaki, Jan Kamillo Kreitzberg and Giorgi Isakadze on Oct. 26 at the West Campus Meadows selling Halloween candy grams. “It was a beautiful sunny day in front of the campus lawn, we were chatting to passing students and amongst ourselves, and there was plenty of candy involved,” Terry Tang wrote. “Honestly, what more could anyone ask for? Slick matching t-shirts?!”
Laura, Tom, and Betsy Woyach, Holly Dennison (center) and Carter Woyach embracing each other for a family photo in the fall 2021 on a beach in Santa Barbara, Calif. Living in two countries, eight cities, and many houses, the Woyach family has a strong bond. After six months of planning a family photoshoot, Laura Woyach explains that her husband is the only one missing from the photo due to recovering from an illness but the family has always been a team regardless. “This is my squad, my peeps, they happen to also be my family,” Laura wrote. “We are lucky enough to still all stay together and get to live in beautiful Santa Barbara.”
Kevon Johnson, Jeremy Zatar, and Jaci Ventura at the beach on August 6, 2021. Kevon explains that his friends bring him the most joy. “They’ve helped me out with so much in my life and I couldn’t thank god enough for placing these two thriving individuals into my life,” Johnson wrote. “It’s crazy how far we’ve come together. Just feels like yesterday we were in high school, time flies in so many aspects but I know I have these two for life!”
Jake Miller, Stefano Peluso, and Tristan Morales sitting at the cafeteria in the middle of a bible study. “I love showing people the truth about my lord and savior Jesus Christ, who died on the cross for the forgiveness of the world’s sins,” Miller wrote.
From left, Carmen Murphy, Keely Becker, Bianca Ascencio, Ashley Hernandez and Kaitlyn Enbody on Sept. 2021 ready for a Jonas Brothers concert in St. Louis, Missouri. “This was a memorable trip because it combined my twitter besties and my home besties – instantly clicking,” Ascencio wrote.
Dylan Lyke and her friends, from left to right: Kevin Dahlbeck, Keoni Ruiz, Noah Murphy, Yarrow Hogan and Raph Lambrakis-Haddad, eating their barbeque meal on Sept. 3 at his house in Isla Vista, Calif. “My boyfriend and our friend Antonio bought some really good burgers and made some special seasoning and cooked for all of us! This was extra special because my roommate Yarrow and I were finally able to have our friends over at our new place since the years before we didn’t have the space,”Lyke wrote. “The sunset was also amazing that day!”
The AJ 125 justice studies class taught by Professor Silvina Minero on Nov. 2 in room WCC 306. “This picture shows the students and the hard work they’ve done so far throughout the semester,” Minero wrote. “We love collaborative learning!”
Ashton Hughes, Jake Miller, Brian Mwangi and Tristan Morales in October at a church in Anaheim, Calif. “Studying the Bible and baptizing people brings me joy,” Hughes wrote.
Aiden Kress’s moment of pure joy was when he finally got to take a moment and escape a tough week with his friends Jack Tiffin, Ryan Lindberd, and Joe Vlietsra to Lizards Mouth in Santa Barbara, Calif. “The hike up to Lizards Mouth gave me a much-needed release. Jumping around on boulders, discovering caves, and climbing up small features cleared my mind of the past week,” Kress wrote. “The view from the top was amazing when I finally made it up to Lizard’s mouth rock with my friends. As we took a break at the top to chat, I took this photo.”
The middle of the road at Sequoia National park on Oct. 28. “I love being in the nature, I love doing and exploring things with my friends, I love adventuring and in general I love being physically active,” Klara Tigges wrote. “Moreover, one can not see where this road is leading to. This is supposed to show that I am discovering new things which is what I love to do in life and it is what I am doing right now while living as an international student for one semester abroad, here in Santa Barbara. I am on an unknown road right not knowing where it is going to lead me in life while I enjoy my life discovering a new country, culture, nature and society.”
The sky on a foggy morning in December 2021 in Montecito, Calif. “Taking walks along Channel Drive in Montecito on foggy mornings are what bring me joy,” Clara Bakus wrote.
Prairie Creek State Park, in Humboldt County, Calif. on Jan. 2. “Hiking among the redwoods along the California Coast is like walking back through time,” AJ Skiles wrote.
Vanessa Santillan and Nick Hernandez on Oct. 27 at the campus bookstore dressed up in their Halloween costumes. “I had a great time running around campus as a slice of bacon and seeing all of my friends get their faces painted,” Hernandez wrote.
Ivy Scott embracing her mother Ara Salazar after graduating from high school on June 10, 2021, at Palisades Charter High School in Los Angeles, Calif. “Graduating is usually something that doesn’t happen in my family, being a first generation student in high school and college was a first experience for me and my family,” Scott wrote. “The reason I chose this picture was to represent the joy and happiness me and my mother felt once I graduated high school and accomplished something that had never occurred in my family.”
Ryan Painter and Jake Gildred smiling as they find their balance on a boat on July 25 in Capri, Italy. “My best friend and I took our first solo trip to Italy this summer,” Painter wrote. “We stayed on the Amalfi Coast and I felt surrounded by so much adventure, freedom, and love.”
Garrett Lemken and his girlfriend Jenna McMahon. “She brings me joy and happiness being with her everyday. She’s always wonderful and is amazing to be around,” Lemken wrote.
Raquel, 4-hours-old Adelina and Jonathan Hernandez on July 13, in their first family photo together. “I gave birth to a beautiful healthy baby girl at home under the supervision of a world renowned breech provider, Dr. Stuart Fischbein and his amazing team. I had my doulas, best friend, my husband and children there to support me through it all,” Raquel wrote. “The experience has been life changing. My story has been shared throughout the birth community all over the world, because what happened in my living room defied a system that said a VBA3C couldn’t be done, and definitely not breech.”
A BeReal of Joe Martin and LTA Aquivo Lowen-Diaz on Oct. 31 at the Metro Entertainment in Santa Barbara, Calif. Martin had just finished playing a card game called Magic the Gathering. “He’s [Lowen-Diaz] kinda a MTG master,” Martin wrote. “Some even call him ‘Masterquivo’.”
Carson Mercier and Quinton Pressley on Nov. 7 at Timbers Roadhouse in Goleta, Calif. “He makes the world go round and he is a cool dude,” Pressley wrote. “Enough said, flyest journalists in the Santa Barbara County.”
Sally Ghizzoni, 65 and her cousin Jennifer Wallace, 64, after a game of Frisbee golf at the Evergreen Open Space Disk Golf course in Goleta, Calif.
Manhattan Wood standing with his skis at 5:30 a.m. at the Cascade Mountain Range in Oregon. “There is nothing like an alpine sunrise, crisp air, and the view of a lifetime,” Wood wrote.
Patrick Blankenship, playing baseball at McCaslin Park in Carol Stream, Illinois. ”I love playing baseball and this is my main sport and I hope to be really good one day and make it to the MLB,” Blakenship wrote.
Elle Caughran mid-laugh waiting in line in a car at the border in Tecate, Calif. “I met this woman recently and her sense of freedom, openness, caring, and laughter made me feel elevated,” Thomas Brostrom wrote. “She does not seem to judge or make for any wrongs. Her open and very talkative nature brought hope and inspiration into my soul. She also makes me laugh!”
A selfie of Asiana Weddington in Goleta, Calif. Her joy is living life with passion and purpose rather than fear. “This photo represents stepping into my dreams, approaching challenges that terrify me, and letting go of fears of imperfection. I’ve come to realize that by not pursuing my passions, I’m neglecting my sense of purpose, and rejecting any possibility of growth,” Weddington wrote. “If I fail, I’ll simply fall right back to where I am now, but at least I’ll know I tried, and I’ll surely grow from it.”
Grace Twedt and her bike at 8:50 a.m. on June 5 at the top of Foxen Canyon road in Santa Ynez, Calif. “I discover so much on my bike, my bike is freedom to me and it doesn’t matter where I am when I am on my bike, I am taken away by the beauty that surrounds me,” Twedt wrote
Josue Pule and his electric bike on Oct. 25 at City College in Santa Barbara, Calif. He uses this bike to get to school and back.
Emilia Acosta with a pumpkin face paint design on Oct. 31 in her home. “I love [to] take pictures of my daughter any chance I get especially if she has a design done by Mom,” Jose Acosta wrote.
LTA Eiko Kitao’s 4-months-old grandson Oliver Okpysh on Sept. 25 at his first Los Angeles Chargers game at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, Calif. According to Kitao, he is a third generation Chargers fan in her family.
Annette Holdman photographed a native of Isla Taquile, Peru on August 4 in Lake Titicaca, Peru. Holdman expressed her love for traveling, especially in Latin America. “For each country I visit I make a set of portraits of the people who live there,” Holdman wrote. “Looking at my photos takes me back to the wonderful places I’ve been and the fantastic people I’ve met.”
Benny Chaidez smiling in his Eagles jersey on Oct. 18 in front of the Philadelphia Eagles Stadium in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This was Chaidez’s first time going to the stadium and according to him it was one of the best joys of his life. “As much as I love seeing all my favorite teams play on the television, going to a game is a different level. Being at the game with more passionate fans brings joy like no other,” Chaidez wrote. “Every sports fan will definitely enjoy seeing their favorite team play, especially at the stadium!”
Michael Therrien in the middle of doing a backflip. “I’ve always liked pushing myself and my limits and tricking allows me to do this while also letting me explore my creative side,” Therrien wrote.
Matthew Reed ringing a big bell attached to the side of a building in August. This photo brings joy because “Everybody loves to ring bells,” Carly Gertsman wrote.
Claire Bellue (left), Jaqui Chaidez (middle) and Samantha Wilson (right) on a night out together in June at the Brooklyn Bridge in New York. Wilson and Chaidez went to visit their best friend in New York and asked a passing couple to photograph the three of them. “This trip symbolized our transition into adulthood while highlighting our continuous friendship, bond, and love for each other regardless of time and distance,” Wilson wrote.
Cars, bikes, and people zoom by on Oct. 6 on the busy streets of Dumbo, Brooklyn as Clarissa Perez stops to take a picture. Perez was on a trip celebrating her twentieth birthday. “I was in New York and greatly appreciated the time I got to spend there,” Perez wrote. “It was amazing because I got to see all of my friends that moved to New York and even meet some new ones!”
Matthew Reed on a road trip a couple summers ago in Moab, Utah.
James Tennant and Andrew Rocchio scuba diving at Anacapa Island on Oct. 2. “I love the freedom of being in the water and feeling like I’m a part of the marine world,” Zoe Valle wrote. “Just by looking at this simple image I took with my GoPro, it is able to calm me and remind me of what I love.”
In front of Pixar Pier on Sept. 24 at Disney California Adventure Park in Anaheim, Calif moments before the World of Color show started. “You can feel the anticipation radiating from the guests around you as everyone waits for the moment when the background music stops, the lights go out and the show begins,” Cody Segal wrote.
Wondercon convention at the Anaheim Convention center in Anaheim, Calif. “This yearly event where folks from all over the world share their love of art, comics, costuming, collecting, movie previews and meet your favorite entertainers, can share this appreciation in a non-judgmental environment,” Candee Gyll wrote. “There is an energy and a shared kindness and courtesy not easily found in other conventions.”
Jasper Ferguson’s pothos plant in his art studio on Oct. 29. “Sunlight brings me joy. Nature brings me joy. Noticing small, beautiful details, like water droplets, brings me joy,” Ferguson wrote. “This photograph captures all of those things in one photograph.
Maria Chaidez playing a quick game of Pokémon Go on Oct. 22 in front of her house in Santa Barbara, Calif. Chaidez first started playing the game on July 22, 2016 when the app first came out. “I love to get my daily freebies, complete all my fields, battle against other Pokemon and add new friends to trade gifts with,” Chaidez wrote. “If you know me, you know that Pokémon Go brings me joy.”
Brenno Ressa has worked as a tattoo artist for 15 years. He currently works at Slanging Ink tattoo in downtown Santa Barbara. The tattoo shown is one of Ressa’s clients. Ressa explained how he likes to help people feel comfortable in their own skin and wants for everyone to be happy with what they put on their body.
An abstract image of a flower. “There is something very satisfying about reminding myself/ourselves of the diversity in nature and the world that exists beyond our own perceptions,” Karin Stellwagen wrote.