Starting Out As A Photography Major
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Student Life

Starting Out As A Photography Major

You miss all the shots you don't take (not referring to basketball)

Starting Out As A Photography Major
Sarah Lee

This semester, I made some big moves I didn't think I would choose. Halfway through the semester, I knew I made the right choice.

If you told me a year ago, I'd be a photojournalism major, I wouldn't believe you. The support and encouragement from my classmates and instructors made it easier to present my work. I would not have gotten any of these connections without making the choice to switch.

It was overwhelming when I walked into my first formal photography class.

I was handed a pre-exam. While I was barely writing down answers, my only friend at the time was flying through. I had no idea what an "f-stop" or Lightroom is (I do now though). Trying to stay optimistic, I reminded myself that the whole point of college was to learn. I wouldn't be in college if I already knew everything. Most of my classmates have their own camera, but I didn't. Like what photography major doesn't have their own camera? One who switched into it last semester.

My friends and professor reassured me that it was okay to be a beginner.

My lovely TA made sure all of us had the same chance to learn in the class by securing cameras for photo exercises during class. I luckily have amazing friends who let me borrow their cameras too. A good friend of mine studies film at Syracuse and let me borrow his camera. He said, "You can borrow my camera as long as you're my on-set photographer." Giving me his prized possession and an opportunity to practice made me hopeful.

Photography opened me up to meeting new people and building existing relationships.

I knew nobody else but my friend when I walked onto his set. After spending a few hours with them, they are some of the coolest people I met. Even though they all knew each other previously, they were kind and welcoming. They were happy to see the photos I took too. Being present and playing around with a camera introduced me to people who I would not have met otherwise.

Personal Photo

Being surrounded by creative classmates helped me reach out to people who would fit my idea of the photo. I was able to take photos of my dance showcase and reached out to one of them for a one-on-one photoshoot over the weekend. My classmates used me in their projects and I never felt more like a superstar. Dance means the world to me and I always kept it to myself and photo brought out how much I love it.

Combining what friends' and teachers' advice, there are no consequences for whatever you try. College gives students the resources and tool to build skills. Whatever you're passionate about, it is completely, 100% following. As a college student, there are no consequences for making the wrong decision. I came across an Instagram story that made me think about the big decisions I made. You won't get what you want without stating it at the very least.

My classmates turned into friends and they gave me the courage to put my work out there even though I'm just starting. Photography can get competitive, but all I have is support. For more photo samples, please check out my photo Instagram: @sarahhlee.jpg

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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