Photojournalism is the art of communicating news through the lens of the camera. We have all seen a photo that stops us in our tracks, it evokes an intense emotional reaction of joy, anger, inspiration, or sorrow. It sometimes makes people look at the image and wonder how they even got that shot, or some even wonder why they chose to take that picture. Student photographers at Scott Middle School are learning the responsibility they have can enhance news stories and publications, and can tell a story without ever speaking a word.
"Photography is so important. It is it's own intelligence," said Victoria Lowe, SMS digital technology teacher. "We work hard to understand the power that can come from being in the right place at the right time with a camera. Photographers have the ability to literally freeze a moment in time."
For these students, the simple fact of enjoying looking at pictures made them consider becoming a photographer.
“I always loved taking pictures of vacations or of my family members. My friends and I love to be able to look back at pictures and be able to think of when I took them and how I felt when I took them. They just bring a lot of emotion and happiness to me,” said eighth grade first-year student photographer Kennedy Follis.
While learning the ins and outs of the camera, Lowe guides her students through ethical questions. She challenges them to take in a scene without disturbing it and look for the best angle, with the best composition to tell the story.
“Photography is being able to capture the moment. I think the coolest thing is when I take a picture and it's that certain moment, the right moment. You can feel the emotion and everything that was going on right there. You can always look back and remember everything about that time. I find it really cool capturing something that’s not going to happen again,” said eighth grade photography editor Keeley McNeil.
Lowe teaches her photographers to understand the importance of the task they have taken on. It may be that some would say that it’s just taking pictures for a yearbook. But they see it as the archiving of a piece of history that will never come again.
“I know that the photography that they are doing has an amazing message behind it, which makes it more powerful,” Lowe says.
The future is bright for these talented young photographers. They are looking at career options that allow them the opportunity to continue their love of capturing images on film.
“It makes me feel like I'm doing something important like capturing that one specific moment in time and like freezing it. I'm the person who did that. I did it,” said eighth grade lead photographer Preslee Palmer.
SMS student photographers Preslee Palmer, Keeley McNeil and Kennedy Follis work hard to know their equipment and understand the importance of the task they have to provide photos for the yearbook.
Scott Middle School cheerleaders have fun and enjoy cheering for the football players during a game at Piner Middle School in Sherman. Photo by Preslee Palmer
Working the sidelines at games for all sports is an important part of the coverage for a yearbook photographer. Football games become a good place to learn about “following the action”. Photo by Kennedy Follis
Young SMS photographers focus on the proper way to hold their camera while shooting an event. Respect and care for the equipment is one of the first lessons taught.
Photo by Keeley McNeil