Monday, October 27, 2008

Tough Decisions

If you paid attention to the news at the right time last Wednesday, you might have noticed for a brief moment that there was a shooting at WKU. Reports of armed gunmen and shots fired were flying around the national media. This sent our campus into chaos and frenzy as swat teams and media crews converged at Western. For a long while we all believed there were gunmen on campus, thankfully it turned out to be somewhat of a false alarm. It was finally sorted out and believed to be a fight between 20 or so people that happened at 2 locations, and although several people came forward claiming to have seen/ heard gunshots, none were confirmed. Although the national media soon found that it wasnt jucy enough for the, it was still big news for our campus because of some of the events that happened while our school was on lockdown. The most significant being several students were detained at gunpoint in what could be described as overkill. When one girl said to a cop while he arrested her friend "You cant do that" he said, "If you want to be a part of this, ill make you part of this, and threw her on the ground" Thats our front page photo. It was a difficult decision after considering all of the great images, but the above layouts is how it ran in our paper. We chose the photo for the front because it best illustrated that confusion and chaos of the day. It also portrayed an event that hardly anyone on campus witnessed, and we felt was important. Overall our photographers did a great job and got the most story telling images possible. It was great practice for me as well because i found out just how stressful this job can be, but also how rewarding. And no one had to get shot.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Finally got to shoot a picture

This semester i have taken the job as photo editor for WKU's paper, the College Heights Herald. It all happened last minute, but has so far been an awesome experience. I have already learned stuff that i didn't expect to learn. Just the nature of editing hundreds of images a week is bound to help your photography in the long run, i hope. I will say one thing, spending all of my time watching my staff take great pictures, and not having the time to take any myself, has made me more eager than ever to pick up my camera. I did find some time this past saturday to shoot a feature at the football game Western played against Murray state.

I saw this group of young kids hanging outside of the rest of the crowd as everyone else passed by. They were so preoccupied with texting on their phones, that im not sure they knew there was a game going on. They were nice kids though.

Check out what were doing online at the Herald.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Where'd I park my horse?

This image is from a horse jumping competition. The interesting thing was that one of the courses was set up on top of a parking garage. Where else would you put all the horses but on the lower levels. I wonder if anyone forgot where they parked their horse.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

First few weeks

Here are some images from my first few weeks at the Knoxville News Sentinel, as well as one from a friends wedding i shot in Nashville. I'm gonna post a bunch of images, so i don't blame you if you only look at the first few and then get bored. I might. Please give me some feedback if you feel like it.

I hope that everyone else out there doing internships is doing awesome. Good luck this summer.

These first two are from a Llama sanctuary that i visited today on an assignment. Of course the assignment was scheduled to go at the same time as the reporter as opposed to by myself when something interesting was happening. I was pretty happy with what i got considering the circumstances, but not satisfied enough. So, i got it approved to go back tomorrow and thursday when they are going to try and catch a wild Llama and bring another to the sanctuary. They were a pretty awesome family and im hoping to get some good images as well as audio from it.

Again with the scheduling. When i read the assignment it said that at 1:30 these kids from this science camp would be presenting the projects they had worked on all week to their parents. It didnt sound to visual so i showed up an hour and a half early to try and photograph them actually working on their projects. I'm glad i did because the presentation i was supposed to photograph consisted of a bunch of people sitting in a gym. Im finally getting the hang of how these assignments work. At my last internship the scheduling was done differently, so it took some figuring out.

Just a simple feature to run with a story about the public library, they never ran the story. Oh well.

Bridal dresses style shoot. Its funny because the location that we shot this at was probably the tackies wedding place i have ever seen. It looked like a glorified funeral home. So four out of the seven shots were done in an abandoned, overgrown lot next to the location.

Jenny putting on makeup getting ready for the big moment. An amazing couple and the wedding was a joy to photograph. I had a blast guys, thanks.

Monday, May 26, 2008


For the last two years i have missed my Mom's birthday as well as most other holidays and special occasions. So this year instead of taking another internship in new city in a new state, i made the decision to come back to my hometown of Knoxville, Tn and spend the summer with my family. It was a really hard decision, and i wasnt sure it was the right one for quite a while. I think it was so ingrained into my heard that if i didnt get an internship somehow i would be failing. It took some time to realize that doing something different might be what i need. I guess i ll know at the end of the summer. I wont be taking a break completely from photography though. I was offered the newly created summer intern position at the Knoxville News Sentinel after a friend of mine, Joe Howell left to get married and start his freelance career in Nashville. So, i am looking forward to spending a great summer with my family and catching up on some moments that i might have been missing. Like this one. Happy birthday Mom.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Hold em'

Texas that is...

A group of locals get together at the back of a bar to play a game of poker.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

something new to look at

I really cant stand checking someones blog on a regular basis and seeing the same old photo staring back at me every time. Which is exactly what i'm guilty of. So, here is a an update.

I recently finished the Appalachian Cultural project in Whitesburg, Ky. and so i thought i would post a couple of my favorite portraits from my time there. It took place in Eastern Kentucky and i cant say enough about the people and the culture there. The landscape has a mystique to it that is almost addicting. It is refreshing to be in a town that feels alive, and has a pulse. To meet real people facing real problems everyday. It was truly a sobering experience. I know that one day i want to return there on my own for one reason or another.

Check out the Website to see the rest of the workshop

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Shake Rag Reed

The first story topic for the picture stories class this semester was community/religious leader. After about four days of non stop searching and calling places to find a story i grew a little anxious and decided to just wander around until i stumbled somewhere. I was driving around and i started to think of the kind of standards that a community encompasses. We tend to think of communities as towns, cities or even large groups of people. But a restaurant is a community, right? Well i thought so too so i wondered into a little diner called "Shake Rag Restaurant" The area of shake rag is a historic district in Bowling Green that is predominately African America that saw its peak during the civil rights movement, but is now mostly quite. I thought that whoever owns the only restaurant in this community must be a leader, so i walked in and met Reed, the owner. I spent a couple of days with him at his restaurant, but the real fun came wheni went to church with him. (Oh, did i mention he's a preacher). As you can probably guess, this white boy from the suburbs had never been to an all black southern Baptist Church before. ( I was raised Presbyterian and there is a reason they call them the "frozen chosen") But it was awesome. They really fill the church with song and spirit like i had never seen before. Being in there, it was hard not to feel the spirit a little too.

Anyways, here is a picture i liked of Reed teaching Sunday school class. He didn't preach this Sunday.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Old soul

I posted a portrait of James back in November, and i think i like this one more. Give me some feedback.

Monday, February 11, 2008


Late last week several tornadoes tore through the south and northern Tennessee/ southern Kentucky were hit pretty hard. Being that it was basically in our back yard, myself and a group of students set out to cover the destruction. I have to admit i have never been involved with anything of this magnitude before, or seen anything quite so powerful and i wasn't quite sure what to expect. I wasn't sure if we would be able to get access or if we would be kicked out. And even if we did get access, what would the community think of us showing up with cameras and audio equipment? Were we telling peoples stories, or just shooting for ourselves? I wrestled with this for a long time and decided to go anyway. We went to Lafayette, Tenn since it was said to be hit the hardest, and it looked more like a scene from Iraq than it did a quite rural town. Houses were wiped off their foundations and forests were bent over like hay, i had never seen anything like it and as i saw this i realized that no television broadcast could possible do it justice, it actually looked like Hell. As i got out of the car and walked down the street with my camera i had no idea what the people cleaning up the debris of their destroyed homes would think of me. As i walked past the first house, i waived to a man cleaning up some children's toys, and made the decision to keep walking. But then he yelled up to the road "Looks like it just polished her right off." He was referring to the fact that his home had been completely removed from its foundation as it God took a giant pencil eraser and wiped it clean. I took this as my opportunity to listen to his story and introduce myself. Without asking any questions or explaining anything he told me to take pictures of anything i wanted. I did. And I listened to him tell me about how he and his wife narrowly missed being crushed by the floor of their home. He told my he was waiting on his family to some over and bring some things. Figuring there would be some good moments, i asked if i could wait too, he said i could. The whole time i was there the family asked questions about me and school and photography. They offered me water and when a FEMA truck brought pizza by they practically tried to make us eat some saying that " you boys are working hard and need some food." After all they had been through, they thought WE were the ones working hard. Overall i stayed with his family for a couple of hours until it got dark, and the town was put on curfew. After it all was over i felt as though we were completely right about going down there. And even though i spent more time talking and listening than i did taking pictures i learned that not even a tornado can destroy southern hospitality.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Winter Break

Alright, I know what your thinking, but I didn't put my camera down over the winter break completely. I shot a few hockey pictures for the Knoxville News Sentinel, but my favorite image came from Christmas morning when i set up some lights and did a few portraits at my grandparents house. I will be updating much more frequently from now on so please keep checking back!

Grandma and Grandpa on Christmas