Behind the scenes: Keeping up with student photographers

by Irina Malyugina, Photo Editor

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This year, the news side of the journalism program altered the way newcomers are taught photography skills, adding more hands-on exercises and a couple of days dedicated exclusively to Humans of Harker portrait practice. Peer behind the scenes in how student journalists train.

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Camera in hand, Mark Hu (9) laughs at another student’s antics while Visual Editor Nina Gee (11) peeks out from underneath one of the benches in the Rothschild Performing Art Center (RPAC) lobby.

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Junior Nerine Uyanik takes a photo of the photographer. Though the exercises were aimed at cubs (journalistic jargon for first-year journalists), returners were also encouraged to refine their skills by participating.

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Mark holds a diffuser during a demonstration. Each class engaged in one to three days of learning how to take Humans of Harker portraits.

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Global editor Arushi Saxena (10) photographs her cub, Irene Yuan (9). Cubs and their returners took portraits of each other as part of the exercise.

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Opinion Editor Srinath Somasundaram (10) and STEM Editor Arya Maheshwari (10) hug while freshman Nicole Tian practices. The students split up into big groups with cubs and returners together and wandered the campus as they practiced.

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Nicole Tian (9) trains her focus on an upperclassman. The exercise was designed to make cubs this year more comfortable with taking portraits for Humans of Harker, a project in which the journalism program features each and every senior in their own online profile.

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Nina poses for a student while lying down under a bench. Some students came up with innovative settings and poses for their subjects.

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Cubs Mark and Catherine Feng (9), News Editor Eric Fang (11) and Global Columnist Michael Eng (10) review a photo with reporter Anna Vazhaeparambil (10). Throughout the lessons, returners and cubs helped each other improve their knowledge of the camera.

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Nicole prepares to take a photo of some other student journalists playing catch during a demonstration. Another day of photo lessons was dedicated to teaching cubs and returners how to take photos of sports.

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Arya calls to Srinath as he prepares to throw him a football during the demonstration. Students practiced taking photos of football, basketball, soccer, and baseball.

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Arushi’s camera bag and shoes rest on Davis Field, where the activity took place, while she plays catch with Anna Vazhaeparambil. During this exercise, most of the returners played sports while the cubs took photos of them.

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Eric holds out a hand to catch a football passed to him by Michael. Students rotated between multiple stations, each dedicated to a sport.

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Smiling for the camera, Anna throws a baseball to Arushi at the baseball station.

Irina Malyugina
Arushi  catches the baseball thrown by Anna. The primary focus of this exercise was to teach cubs and returners to time their shots properly and to use the correct settings for sports photography.

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Football in hand, director of journalism Ellen Austin summarizes the day’s lessons for the class before they head back to the classroom. After the photo lessons, the cubs took an assessment to test their knowledge of photography dubbed The Flight Test between Oct. 29 and Sept. 9.