I went home to Baltimore last weekend for a quick break from Boston and to shoot the Goucher College Alumni Weekend festivities.
I really enjoyed my time home, and it was good to catch up with old friends, professors, and other various Goucher types. I was also happy to shoot something other than baseball for the first time in several weeks.
I got to shoot yesterday’s tennis match between Goucher College and Virginia Wesleyan University.
One word: Cold.
I was lucky enough to get a call to shoot photographs at last week’s Board of Trustees dinner with the Senior Class at Goucher College. I’ve attended several of similar events myself, and I’ve photographed many more.
They’re always enjoyable, and always bring together an interesting mix of people from different parts of the Goucher world.
I was there as a photographer for the cocktail party and for some award presentations after dinner, but as per ritual whenever time allows, I wandered off and shot a bit on my own. That probably wasn’t the best idea, as I was so sick that I don’t even think I could see what I was shooting. It was day three of some awful virus.
That’s why I like this one better black and white, dark, and nondescript. It’s kind of how my Dayquil/Nyquil/Advil filled brain was functioning at the time.
The start of 2012 has been very busy for me, so it’s been awhile since I’ve been on the blog. I haven’t been shooting as much as I’d like of late, as I’ve been preoccupied settling all the details for my upcoming move to Boston (more to come soon).
That’s why it felt great to shoot this concert with Violinist Yeou-Cheng Ma and Pianist Lisa Weiss (read: mom) two nights ago. This isn’t a prize winner here, but I felt the need to post and get the blog back up and running.
I shot the Goucher College Opera Workshop’s performance of “The Mikado” or “The Town Of Titipu” last night. Throughout my years at Goucher, I photographed plenty of these performances, but this was the first that I’ve shot since graduating.
It was nice to be back, and as I watched and made pictures, I kept thinking about those four years. Had I been shooting this last year, I would have gone straight to the library or the newspaper office after it was over for a late night/early morning full of work. It’s quite a difference a year makes.
This production was full of opportunities for great pictures. I haven’t shot anything that was this visually exciting in awhile, so this was a nice jolt of energy that my shooting has needed of late.
For current Goucher Students in the thick of the end of semester work, I strongly suggest you take a two hour study break tonight and go watch ‘The Mikado.’ I trust you’ll leave feeling refreshed and energized.
I love shooting sports, but basketball is among my least favorites. There’s something about dark, yellowy lit gymnasiums that just doesn’t do it for me.
At its roots, it’s not as pure of a game as other sports are. Often the only thing you see through your lens are clusters of bodies falling on top of one another, or, if you’re shooting from the baseline, bodies falling on top of you. Visually, I prefer sports with simple, clean lines and great light. You’ll get a sense of what I mean if you click here or here.
For me, those are refreshing to look at after the types of events I’ve been covering lately.
Regardless, I shoot basketball when I need to, and I can make some good images when I do. I covered the opening round of the annual Pride of Maryland tournament at Goucher last Tuesday, and I liked these two as a pair. They show the uglier side of basketball.
This is about as exciting a photograph one can make at a networking event. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to the discussions held and the questions raised while I was shooting, but visually, it was as ordinary looking as it gets.
Sometimes that’s just how it is, and it’s important for me to keep in mind that I’m not going to make amazing pictures at every assignment I shoot. As long as I get quality images of what’s needed, then I’ve done my job. Such was the case from this event.
If anything, it’s a good piece of PR for Goucher.
I shot the swim meet at Goucher College this weekend. Here’s one I liked. It’s tough for me to get into shooting swimming, but that’s likely just because the light in Goucher’s pool is abysmal.
I’d be curious to see what shooting is like in, say, an Olympic pool.
I must have missed it the first time I went through my images from last Saturday’s soccer game at Goucher College, but I caught this quick moment after a second glance through today.
Sorry, Baum, for posting this, but apart from the fact that it’s you in the photo, it stands on its own as a nice shot. Oy, no pun intended there.
I shot the Goucher Men’s and Women’s tennis match last Friday for the Goucher Athletics department. It was nice to be back on my home turf, see people I haven’t seen in awhile, and test out my new 70-200mm f/2.8 lens, which I’m still getting used to.
Here’s one that I thought was interesting.
Alas, yet another post about rain.
It seems like rain has unintentionally been a theme for me over the past few months. This post is about a celebratory occasion, though, so it’s far less dreary than some of the other rain posts.
It didn’t stop raining for the entire week leading up to graduation. In fact, it seemed like the rain fell hardest precisely at the times when family and friends arrived en masse for the various ceremonies and recognitions. But even with the constant downpours, the festive mood remained intact, and come graduation time, the rain had lifted.
The week was jam packed, each day filled with one event or party after another. In fact, I was so exhausted by the end of the week that I nearly fell asleep during the graduation ceremony itself.
I have the feeling I wasn’t the only one.
Congratulations and good luck to the Goucher College Class of 2011!
This will be my final “Reflections on Four Years at Goucher College” post. I’ll stop boring you.
This photograph represents the countless hours and, particularly throughout my Junior and Senior year, regular all-nighters spent working in the library. It started with the Julia Rogers library and the infamous “Walk of Shame” – the long walk across campus at 3:30 in the morning in the cold winter rain after finalizing a twenty-page paper.
Halfway through the four years, the library moved to the Athenaeum, a much more convenient location. The workload increased however, and surviving on Snickers bars and Fritos from the vending machines in Julia Rogers changed to surviving on Caprese baguettes and Iced Athenaeum’s from Alice’s Restaraunt.
Those nights, and the lack of sleep in general, are elements of College that I won’t miss, but hard work pays off. I graduated Magna Cum Laude with honors in my Communications and Media Studies major and a minor in Spanish Language. I’m also a member of the Phi Beta Kappa and Chi Alpha Sigma academic and athletic honor societies. And, this year, I wrote a 76-page Senior honors thesis titled, “Sex, Censorship, and Student Journalism: What Two Newspaper Columns Reveal About the Student Press.”
What I will miss are the conversations and discussions that took place in classes, and I’m thankful to the professors who sparked my interest in so many different areas of study. It was always a joy listening to lectures about the changing landscape of journalism or the role of robots in science fiction films.
Finally, Goucher is unique in that professors become mentors and then subsequently become friends. I doubt there’s many other places where your Research Methods professor beats you 7-0 in basketball or your Spanish professor asks you to play tennis or your Communications professor buys you Chinese food. In my opinion, the prospect of forming these types of relationships is among the finest that Goucher has to offer.
My reflections about my time at Goucher College are not complete without some closing thoughts on The Quindecim, the institution that gave me a sense of purpose on campus and defined me professionally and personally.
After being voted Editor-In-Chief of the newspaper, I led an extensive revitalization of all aspects of the publication. These efforts transformed The Quindecim from an inconsistent and unprofessional newspaper to a reliable, recognizable, and revered institution on campus. You can read about what we set out to accomplish at the start of that process here.
We did a huge service to the Goucher community, one that unfortunately has been taken for granted and has gone largely unrewarded. You’ll get a sense of what I mean if you read here.
What I didn’t refer to much in those articles, though, is the impact The Q had on my life at Goucher, and subsequently, in the professional realm. I joined as a photographer at the start of my sophomore year, and despite quickly developed frustrations about the editorial leadership of the paper, I was shooting every day. I was now more than just a photography student in a class. I had deadlines to hit and events to cover. Knowing that my photographs would be seen by more than just one professor, I forced myself to do better work.
I was named Photography Editor soon after, and because Goucher is such a tight-knit community, I donned a “the kid with the camera at every event imaginable” type persona. It was this visibility that led to countless photo opportunities for the Office of Communications, The Quarterly, The Sports Information desk, the Dance and Music departments, Goucher Hillel, and other various student clubs. My newspaper portfolio was also good enough to land me my Photography internship with the Baltimore Orioles.
As I started reporting and writing more as well, my involvement grew and grew. Serving as Editor-In-Chief was the most grueling task of my college years, but was without a doubt also the most gratifying. I learned about ethics, tough decision making, working alongside others, organization, time management, attention to details, the risks of making mistakes, and recognition and lack of recognition for good work. These are lessons that reach far beyond a newsroom.
I view joining The Q as one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. As silly as it seems, those first photography assignments about bed bugs and campus housing shortages remain just as important to me as any assignment for a more well-known publication. Without those assignments, I never would have gotten to The Baltimore Sun or The New York Times. Those first photographs ignited a passion that I hope will turn into a career, and for that, I love The Q.
Some of the best experiences Goucher College made possible for me were ones that happened thousands of miles away. Given Goucher’s international sensibility and study abroad requirement, I had many opportunities for travel, both nationally and internationally.
To fulfill my requirement, I studied in Buenos Aires, Argentina in January 2010 for a four-week intensive Spanish language program. What a trip. Living with a wonderful host family during my stay there, I was immersed in Argentine culture and learned the value of living without some of the luxuries that are easy to take for granted back home. I also left with a group of close friends from around the United States.
In retrospect, I wish I had been able to go abroad for an entire semester. It would have been impossible to do without missing a tennis season, but had I stayed there for three or four months, I’m confident that I would have achieved fluency in Spanish. That still remains a goal of mine.
I also visited a good friend of mine in Germany, traveled to Poland and the Czech Republic, and participated in a Taglit-Birthright trip to Israel this past January.
Finally, tennis team Spring break training trips took me to Virginia, North Carolina, and California, and I had many shorter visits to other parts of the country throughout the past four years.
There’s always lots of discussion about Goucher’s abroad requirements. There are certainly challenges to working around 1,400 plus students’ travel plans. In my view, though, this is one of the best things Goucher has going for it.
These pictures are downright boring, but I enjoy posting them as a record of my different living situations during my four years at Goucher College.
My first year, I lived with a roommate in the Sondheim residency. It was by far the nicest room I had. In fact, it was arguably the nicest room on campus, complete with a full bathroom, air conditioning, and a spacious walk in closet.
I never meshed very well into the community of students living in Sondheim though, so I moved out the next year and was lucky enough to obtain a room for myself as a sophomore. I’m an independent person, so living alone doesn’t bother me at all, and Lewis 200 was my palace. I loved it so much that I booked it again for my junior year.
There’s no air conditioning and the building that the room is in is absolutely cruddy, but that room was legendary and was home to some of my best college memories.
Finally, I lived with three of my closest friends in an on-campus apartment during my senior year. We had a blast, minus the mice that started keeping us company at the end of this year.