I spend way too much time looking over the Journalism and Public Relations Curriculum Guides. I am a huge planner and have already tried to plan which COM classes I am taking when between now and my senior year.
This semester was the first semester I could take major specific COM courses so I was thrilled to jump right in, starting with the major core requirements. I am currently taking two of the core journalism requirements, Fundamentals of Journalism (JO 250) and Visual Journalism (JO 303).
I have to admit, I initially wasn’t thrilled that I had to take Visual Journalism and thinking about the class made me extremely anxious. I got so caught up in the fact that I had very limited experience with a camera, I didn’t take the time to realize that is why this class is a requirement. We all have to learn somewhere! It easily became my favorite class of the semester.
The first time I checked a camera out from Field Production Services, I felt out of my element. I didn’t even know if I reserved the right kind of camera. (I did.) During the walk back to my apartment, I dreaded the idea of having to take the camera out and actually use it for my first assignment. But, I ended up having a great time! Having one on one time with the camera outside of the classroom gave me the opportunity to play around with the camera and get comfortable with it.
I know how to take a variety of great pictures now and how to use Photoshop! I definitely wouldn’t have been able to learn this on my own, so I owe all my new skills to Visual Journalism! Now, my class is beginning to shoot video and we will also learn how to use video editing software.
I know a lot of COM students, especially Film and Television students (shoutout to almost all my friends,) already know how to work a camera and how to edit photos and videos so they don’t understand the little victories that come with taking Visual Journalism and learning how to take a great picture. These little victories were so satisfying, I hope everyone has the opportunity to experience and love the little victories like I do!
Now with my new found interest in photo and video, I can not only incorporate these elements into my work to tell dynamic stories, but also to take pictures and videos for my own enjoyment. So, if you are not looking forward to taking a core requirement, remember there is a reason the course is a requirement and it will undoubtedly help you grow as a student and an up-and-coming professional in your field.