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Students of Storytelling
A contest to help storytellers create and share their stories.
Meet our storytellers!
A while back, we invited student image makers from across the US to submit an idea for a photography project that, if selected, we would help them share with the world. Since then, we’ve been inundated with fantastic ideas and we wanted to say a huge thanks to all who submitted a project for consideration. It’s been a tough job choosing from such a high standard of submissions, but below are the 30 lucky creators that are taking part!

Over the coming weeks, each of them will be telling their story to the world live online through their personal profile. So, take some time to discover the next generation of US storytellers and stay tuned to be inspired!
Meet the Mentors!
Our team of industry experts and talented creators will be offering professional guidance to our storytellers on their journey through the Students of Storytelling process


Industry Educators
Akili Ramsess
Following a distinguished career within the press photography industry in which she gained extensive experience and won numerous picture editing and multimedia awards, Akili became Executive Director of the National Press Photographers Association (NPPA) in April 2016. She is a photographer, editor, multimedia producer and avid motorcyclist, and is owner of Eye of Ramsess Media, LLC, based in Atlanta, Georgia.
Thomas Maddrey
Thomas is the founding partner and lead attorney for Maddrey PLLC, a boutique firm dedicated to art law and creative business law. His firm is focused on a number of groups including artists, entrepreneurs, collectors, galleries, museums, and other creative individuals and groups. He is counsel and author at the American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP), the premier photographer trade association.
Tony Corbell
From his beginnings in a small west Texas town, Tony has photographed or taught photographic classes in more than 20 countries and world capitals as well as in all 50 US states. A prolific writer, he has also written more than 150 articles in literally every major photographic magazine in the US, Japan, the UK, and China and is proud to have been acknowledged and included in more than 25 books.
Photographic Mentors
Alison Conklin
Alison has a true passion for weddings, food, fashion and design and when combined with her penchant for framing interesting people in magical moments, this forms the foundation on which her work builds. She wants her photographs to connect people with themselves and their lives in deeper ways. She loves color, joy, light, air, smiles, patterns, organized clutter, unexpected angles and potently genuine moments. But moments most of all because in the end, she believes it's the moments that matter.
Caroline Tran
Caroline is an internationally published wedding, portrait, and commercial photographer. Her work can be seen on the cover of books, magazines, and in numerous print publications. She creates high-quality content for creative, fitness, food, and personal brands and believes that the most satisfying part of her work is making connections and telling stories. Outside of creating images, she also speaks, mentors, and teaches, all while balancing being a mom to two young boys.
Laylah Barrayn
Laylah is a documentary photographer and occasional exhibition organizer. She is the co-author of the book MFON: Women Photographers of the African Diaspora, the first anthology in nearly 30 years that highlights photography produced by women of African descent. She is a frequent contributor to The New York Times and has been published in National Geographic, Vogue, NPR, and VOX, among other publications. Her work has also been exhibited both nationally and internationally.
Michael A. McCoy
As a Baltimore native and disabled veteran who has served two tours in Iraq, photography has been a critical therapeutic outlet for Michael. Since following his passion, Michael has built a strong reputation, having work featured in Time Magazine, The New York Times and The Washington Post, to name a few. He has had the honor of participating in the 2018 New York Portfolio Review and, in 2020 was nominated for the World Press Photo Foundation Masterclass.
Miles Witt Boyer
International wedding and portrait photographer and founder of The Photographic Collective and Miles Witt Boyer Photography, Miles’ keen eye for light and moment are matched with a passion for relationship and the human connection. He is nationally published, award winning, proud to possess a company portfolio showing work from nearly 40 states and countries all over the world, and feels like he is really just getting started.
Thank you to all the applicants who submitted an idea for consideration!


Be inspired
We are a community of storytellers, with our own stories to tell, and this is where they are told.
Find your voice
The Create Forever Workshops, with Muse Storytelling, are your chance to learn from some of the greatest storytellers in the world.
Tell your story
Your story is a part of us and we want to hear it. Come share it with us and participate in our community.