Life Lessons From Valencia
Samantha Feld - COMMENTARY
sfeld857@uwsp.edu

Thank you for letting Valencia (my camera) and me invade your personal space for three years— for allowing me to document the protests, walk-outs, rallies, parties and concerts. Thank you for sharing your stories with me. I’ve never learned so much, and my heart will forever glow for you Stevens Point. Here are some lessons I have learned from photojournalism:

1. Be Fearless and Always Dig Deeper

Photojournalism has taught me to be fearless. If I see a picture I want I have to go after it. I will climb up, stand on top, get in crazy yoga positions; I will always get closer to get the shot I want. I have learned that it is okay to be human. We all have stories to share and you can learn so about each other by letting go of our own fears being open to hearing each other’s stories.

2. Be Patient

There are times when you need to step back and let the story unfold. Patience is incredibly important in photojournalism. If you aren’t patient, then you are anxiously awaiting this story to unfold that you have created in your mind rather than stepping back and really ‘seeing’ the story that is actually unfolding in front of you. Photojournalism has taught me that all I want, and all I need, is already happening right in front of you, you just need to show up and capture it all.

3. Be Okay With Being Vulnerable

Photojournalism has taught me so much about the power of vulnerability, and its role in telling a good visual story. If I was asking you to be open and share your whole story with me as I photographed you, then I needed to be courageous and share my whole story with you- wholeheartedly because that is the only route to creating the most genuine story.