Earth Day

I just wanted to say Happy Earth Day to everyone and share some images from my Earth Day adventures in the Flatirons in Boulder, C.O. Enjoy!

The Image Deconstructed Workshop

At the beginning of this weekend, I felt nervous, a little lost in my career path, and unsure where I should turn after graduation. Sunday afternoon, that all changed. This past weekend I was fortunate to attend The Image Deconstructed Workshop through an grant from RIT.  

Through portfolio reviews and time with peers, I was able to find my voice, which I’ve felt just out of my grasp for a few months.  I feel reenergized and confident, knowing my work is good enough and is important. I left Colorado sad to leave, but excited for the road ahead. 

On a more serious note, it was also exciting to see that there are others who see the ‘old ways’ of photojournalism and want them to change.  Too often, we are an industry that cuts each other down, self medicates with alcohol, and are unkind to young journalists in the name of “that’s how the industry is.”   While in school I’ve often thought about the direct contradiction from this attitude and how we are taught to treat the people with whom we work. We are told to respect and never cause harm, but are cut down by older generations with threats of the industry dying and negative words saying we aren’t good enough. 

People like Ross Taylor, the founder of TID, and those who attended the workshop gave me a renewed sense of hope that those attitudes are on their way out.  The genuine care and support show this weekend was unmatched.  Every person was supported, checked, and encouraged. During portfolio reviews, reviewers asked “What do you want to get out of this? What do you need to know?” rather than throwing back criticism with no clear path to move forward. When people said sexist words, they were checked, and then graciously apologized.  We had conversations about harassment and intimidation in the industry, typically at the hand of the older white men who are dominating many parts of the industry. And every question, thought, answer, was treated as a valid, important addition to the conversation or presentation. 

This is the type of community we need to be building in journalism- one that shows the same amount of respect and support to each other as we do to the people with whom we work, and I truly believe people like Ross and community building workshops, such as TID, are on their way to making that happen. 

Relay For Life 2018

This past Saturday was the my last RIT Relay For Life, an event hosted through RIT’s Colleges Against Cancer club in association with the American Cancer Society.  From 6 p.m. to 6 a.m., we laugh, cry, remember, hope, and fight back against a disease that doesn’t discriminate.  

Before RIT, I had never Relayed before, and I didn’t know what to expect. Was the whole night going to be sad and somber? Was it going to be full of medical jargon that I wouldn’t understand? Whatever I thought back then, I’m glad that my worries were unfounded and didn’t keep me from attending. I remember crying during each Remember Ceremony and feeling jolts of hope during the Fight Back Ceremony. I don’t know if I have many other nights in college comparable to the emotional rollercoaster, camaraderie, exhaustion, and hope that comes out of Relay.

There are few things that I think I will truly miss when I leave RIT- I feel ready to move on and happy with the time I’ve spent here- but this event holds a special place in my heart. I can’t wait to see the photos from next year’s Relay, and the new memories made. 

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