end of year

2014 Wrap Up

2014 was quite the adventure. I went to the Olympics, and added two new countries to my list in the process. I completely totaled my first car. I spent spring break 2014 with some amazing people. Some have left. Some became a bigger part of my life. I successfully raised some fish from eggs through adulthood. (Pretty proud of that one.) I spent an excruciating amount of time at Indiana fairs. Actually, I spent every day of the Indiana State Fair in a tiny trailer with 20ish other young journalists. I even stalked the State Fair queen for two days. I photographed almost all of Ball State’s home football games. I’ve gathered some of my favorite images from the year, with some of the most important things I learned from them. Student enjoys fall sunset

There’s nothing wrong with cell phones. The best camera in this case was an IPhone, considering it was with me. I also realized I want to carry a DSLR more often.

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Midterms are excruciating when it’s 30 degrees and raining in an area that already doesn’t vote much.

Zombies takeover Ball State during food drive

Moment over makeup. I was waiting for the people with more impressive costume to show up when I spotted this really sweet hug between a grandmother and her grandson.

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My self portrait work needs help. That’s a sad Rembrandt. Also, I should take more notes about failed lighting schemes. I tend to struggle to remember what went wrong. That’s valuable, I suppose.

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You really, really have to go with the flow when blue meanie looking Russian band members almost roll you over at the Olympic Park. This was also a lesson in how much I’m terrible at self editing. I didn’t start loving this photo until three different masters of photography plucked it out.

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Rodeos apparently have sort of a nice color palette? Sports shot this year included rodeo, cheerleading, band competition, football, and poi. They were all a blast.

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Consider every angle. Always look for something new.

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Light. Light. Light. Light. Light. Light. Light. Light.

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Knowing the game is as valuable as knowing the camera.

I’m glad I can look back at this blog and realize the mistakes I’ve made and things I’ve learned in the past year. It’s enjoyable to see the holes in my work and be able to make a plan for the upcoming year.

I’m gearing up to do some more serious video in 2015 and I hope to do some documentary type work.  In March, it’s pretty certain I’ll be heading to Cuba to do some photography. I’m currently adding content to a website that will be launching. I’ll be working to improve my brand, as well as my lighting skills. I’m really excited to get started! Thank you for being on the journey.

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Looking Forward

A firefighter works to put out the blaze on the corner of 119th Street and Sheridan Ave. in Whiting, Ind., Sunday, January 20, 2013. The blaze was fought by fire crews from Whiting, Hammond and East Chicago for more than four hours. Apartments and a dress shop were destroyed, but no one was injured.

A firefighter works to put out the blaze on the corner of 119th Street and Sheridan Ave. in Whiting, Ind., Sunday, January 20, 2013. The blaze was fought by fire crews from Whiting, Hammond and East Chicago for more than four hours. Apartments and a dress shop were destroyed, but no one was injured.

When I started sorting through my photos for 2013 to choose my favorites, I was really concerned that I didn’t shoot anywhere near as much as I should have this year. I was correct! I am not happy with how little I shot this year. Despite being really disappointed with myself, I’ve got a fire under me to shoot more in 2014. I intend to shoot just for myself more often, and get back into shooting for the Daily News. After spending a few weeks at home, I’m ready to get back to work! When I get back, I will be taking the position of multimedia editor at the Ball State Daily News. It’s such an honor to be hired into this position, and I can’t wait to give it all I’ve got! I’m also going to be heading to the Olympics in Sochi, Russia, with BSU at the Games to shoot still photography. I’m already so proud of my team, and I know that we’re all going to come back with really strong work. With amazing opportunities ahead of me, I’m going to blow 2014 out of the water. Here are my favorite photos from this year.

I hate dragonflys. They're too big and noisy and all around creepy. This guy was really pretty and detailed, so I couldn't pass up the photo opportunity when he landed a few feet from me.

I hate dragonflys. They’re too big and noisy and all around creepy. This guy was really pretty and detailed, so I couldn’t pass up the photo opportunity when he landed a few feet from me.

Officer R. Trissel tells students how they are allowed to leave after the report of an armed assailant Nov. 15 at the Student Recreation and Wellness Center at Ball State University in Muncie Ind., November 10, 2013. No gunman was found, and no one was injured.

Officer R. Trissel tells students how they are allowed to leave after the report of an armed assailant Nov. 15 at the Student Recreation and Wellness Center at Ball State University in Muncie Ind., November 10, 2013. No gunman was found, and no one was injured.

A car drives through the rain on E. Riggin Road during a thunderstorm warning in Muncie, Ind. Sunday, November 17, 2013.

A car drives through the rain on E. Riggin Road during a thunderstorm warning in Muncie, Ind. Sunday, November 17, 2013.

A man walks his dog near the Hope Memorial Bridge in Cleveland, Ohio. Two statues at either end of the bridge represent progress in transportation.

A man walks his dog near the Hope Memorial Bridge in Cleveland, Ohio. Two statues at either end of the bridge represent progress in transportation.

End of the Year

An audience member is sprayed with paint at the Life in Color event held at Worthen Arena on Saturday.  Life in Color is a concert event that included two Dj's and paint canons that drenched the audience.

An audience member is sprayed with paint at the Life in Color event held at Worthen Arena on Saturday. Life in Color is a concert event that included two Dj’s and paint canons that drenched the audience.

Confession time. I accidently left my entire camera bag in the back of a stranger’s car during an all day shoot. I needed to shoot in two different locations, so I grabbed a ride with a volunteer who’d be going between them. The bag included all of my lenses, my wallet containing about $60 dollars cash, my debit card, and my license, and all of my other gear including an external flash and my extra battery. Ouch. Lesson learned. I can say that I will never do it again. Things I will also never do again include having two dead batteries, leaving for a shoot without a memory card, forgetting to clear a card before my next shoot, and taking a dead laptop out of my room to edit. You have to make mistakes to learn your lessons and I’m quite good at mistakes. I’m glad for these experiences because I’m much better at remembering to charge batteries, clear cards, charge my laptop and always grabbing my bag when exiting strangers cars.

The sun shines through a decaying wall in City Methodist Church in Gary, Indiana. The church was left abandoned about 40 years ago, and nature is taking the structure over.

The sun shines through a decaying wall in City Methodist Church in Gary, Indiana. The church was left abandoned about 40 years ago, and nature is taking the structure over.

In the last year, I’ve improved rather quickly and easily. I’ve learned more efficient ways to handle photos when I’m done shooting, how to shoot lightning and fireworks and to approach a variety of situations. I’ve developed an eye for light and I’ve gotten much better at quickly adjusting my camera for whatever I’m looking at.

I’ve discovered how important it is to be proficient in different aspects of journalism. I’ve learned how to capture quality audio, how to edit it, and how to add it to an effective slideshow. I’ve created audio stories that included an introduction, interviews and a wrap up of the story. I will begin a video class next semester in which I will learn how to shoot quality video and how to edit it. I’ve gotten experience in writing for the Daily News, and I hope to continue practicing journalistic writing.

I began volunteering as a photographer for the Daily News at the beginning of my first semester of college, and I will be hired on for the next half of the school year. I’m very excited to begin working at Ball State’s Newspaper. Everyone who works there has been incredibly supportive and it’s a fantastic place to practice my crafts and make mistakes.

The moon rises above Union Station in Washington DC in Feb. 2012.

The moon rises above Union Station in Washington DC on Feb. 5, 2012.

I’ve developed a passion for creating really great captions. I like gathering the information and learning about people and events in the process. It’s fun to talk to people and understand them in the context of what I’m shooting. I’m glad that I enjoy something that is essential to my photos destined for the newspaper.

I’m very excited for 2013 and I’m very hopeful about the doors it will open for me. Everything seems to be going very well for me at this point and I have every reason to be very optimistic about the future! Here are my favorite photos from 2012, and I hope to have many more at the end of 2013!

Fireworks explode on Navy Pier on July 4, 2012. Spectators enjoyed picnics before the start of the show.

Fireworks explode on Navy Pier on July 4, 2012. Spectators enjoyed picnics before the start of the show.

The Aerostars Formation Aerobatic Team performs in the Gary Southshore Air Show on Friday, July 6, 2012 at Marquette Beach in Gary, Indiana.

The Aerostars Formation Aerobatic Team performs in the Gary Southshore Air Show on Friday, July 6, 2012 at Marquette Beach in Gary, Indiana.

The sun sets behind Indiana wind turbines on Sept 3, 2012. This is the backdrop to my drive to and from Ball State University.

The sun sets behind Indiana wind turbines on Sept 3, 2012. This is the backdrop of my drive to and from Ball State University.

Lightning strikes just outside of my window on July 6, 2012. For this image I used three books in my window as a tripod.

Lightning strikes just outside of my window on July 6, 2012. For this image I used three books in my window as a tripod.

The Beneficence Statue on the campus of Ball State University stands with one arm extended towards the Muncie community. She is nicknamed "Benny" on campus.

The Beneficence Statue on the campus of Ball State University stands with one arm extended towards the Muncie community. She is nicknamed “Benny” on campus.

Northeast Pacific Sea Nettles on display at Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, Illinois. The "Jellies" exhibit includes twelve different species of Jelly Fish.

Northeast Pacific Sea Nettles on display at Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, Illinois. The “Jellies” exhibit includes twelve different species of Jelly Fish.

A grasshopper clings to the fifth floor window of the Lafollette Dorm complex at Ball State Unversity on Aug. 21, 2012.

A grasshopper clings to the fifth floor window of the Lafollette Dorm complex at Ball State Unversity on Aug. 21, 2012.

Cloud Gate reflects light during an instillation called "Luminous Field" on Feb. 12, 2012.

Cloud Gate reflects light during an instillation called “Luminous Field” on Feb. 12, 2012.

Dancers perform in Aubergine Trails choreographed by Rachael Brown during the Senior Choreography Showcase at Ball State University.

Dancers perform in Aubergine Trails choreographed by Rachael Brown during the Senior Choreography Showcase at Ball State University.