This website uses cookies. By using the site you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy.

8 minute read

Getting to Know Our Students of Storytelling Winners Part 1

Our Students of Storytelling program is in full swing, and our winners are actively creating some compelling content. See below to learn a bit more about our student winners!

Tiffiany Peters

College/University – Southwestern Oregon Community College
Age – 34

1 – How did you first get interested in photography?

I have been interested in photography since I was in my teens, but I only ever had a point-and-shoot style camera. It wasn’t until 2017 that I took my first photography class at SWOCC that I started to understand and truly fall in love with photography. While taking the class I would borrow the school’s camera gear, and that’s when I started creating images that were looking more like photos to be proud of and less like a snap shot. My husband gifted me my first DSLR camera as an anniversary present in 2018 and I’ve been hooked ever since. I love seeing the images in my head come to life in my camera and then being able to share the photos with others.

2 – What’s your favorite type of photography to shoot? (street, landscape, portrait, etc.) Why?

This is a hard one for me. I feel like I’m getting into this photography game late so I want to try it all. I want to find what style piques my passion most. I’m still trying to find my niche and find what speaks to me. I have currently been working on food and portrait photography and it has been a blast. I love seeing people’s reactions when I show them the photos I have created with them or their products. As my skills increase I would like try more wildlife photography.

3 – What do you find most challenging about photography?

I think what I find the most challenging right now is knowing which shutter speed and aperture to start out in during a shoot. It takes me several shots to find the right set up. Sometimes the shot is gone before I get the image I want. That’s probably why I try to stick to shoots with less action shots and more stills at the moment.

4 – What’s your favorite image you’ve shot, and why?

My favorite image is actually the very first image I edited for my Re-humanizing the Homeless project. It was one of those shots that as the action started happening naturally I could mentally see what the final image would look like. It is the image that made an idea turn into a reality and gave me a new level of respect for this craft. It is also the first image that I have taken, to really move me and create different emotions while looking at it.

5 – What are you hoping to take away from Students of Storytelling?

What I’m hoping to take away from this project is first and foremost the experience. Creating images and stories that will be viewed on a much larger scale than I’m used to is still very surreal for me, but I feel completely honored to be able to. Second, I’m hoping that my images ignite feeling deep within the viewer. I also hope they find it in their heart to not judge those living on the streets, because we do not know the demons or struggles these people may have that led to their situation. And third, I’m looking forward to learning from the Fujifilm team and other Students of Storytelling while participating in this project. I look forward to seeing the images/videos everyone will be sharing and the stories that will be told.

Bonus question- Is there anything else you’d like Fujifilm fans to know about you or your photography?

Photography is very therapeutic for me. I love days that I can spend shooting and just capture moments in time. I really enjoy seeing the progress I’ve made since receiving my first DSLR and knowing I have so much more to learn. I would love to be a full time photographer and be able to provide for my family by creating beautiful images people would proudly display in their homes or businesses.

View Profile


 

Marcos Contreras

College/University – Mt. San Antonio College
Age – 18

1 – How did you first get interested in photography?

I first became interested in photography the summer entering my senior year of high school. My family and I would take weekend trips to local nature spots and I found myself not only wanting to capture the beautiful landscapes, but also these memories I was making with my family. I began to understand how photography was such a beautiful and powerful art that gives us the ability to tell a story and preserve memories that would last beyond our time and because of that I decided that this was something that I want to do for the rest of my life.  

2 – What’s your favorite type of photography to shoot? (street, landscape, portrait, etc.) Why?

Landscapes will always be my first love but I definitely enjoy shooting portraits. I enjoy shooting portraits because of how much feeling and emotion can be portrayed through a single image. To me, shooting portraits is about capturing the unique features and beauty of each person and in doing so we showcase the beauty of humanity. I have also enjoyed getting to know people as we go through the shooting process and also seeing how my photography has grown through each shoot. 

3 – What do you find most challenging about photography?

What I find most challenging about photography is creating with intention. It is very easy for me to just take lots of pictures that have the basic elements for a good photo, but they do not have much meaning behind them. I am working on slowing down, taking my time to visualize the composition, and capturing moments that create a feeling in the viewer. I am challenging myself to develop the skill of creating with the intention of captivating my audience and leading them to ask questions, sparking curiosity.

4 – What’s your favorite image you’ve shot, and why?

I just recently shot my favorite image which is a portrait of my father from one of our family hikes up in the San Gabriel Mountains. This has become my favorite image because I was able to capture a moment where my father is able to relax and enjoy himself after a long week of hard work. His facial expression not only tells me that it is a nice sunny day but that he is enjoying being out in nature with his family. My father never had many pictures of him taken and I am grateful to have captured this moment to remember him by.

5 – What are you hoping to take away from Students of Storytelling?

First off, I would like to say that I am so thankful and honored to be a part of this group of amazing artists. From this experience I hope to learn as much as I can about how to be a better storyteller and to understand what makes a good storyteller so that in the future, I can continue to share the stories of those who go unnoticed. I also hope to build relationships with these other great photographers and learn from them. In doing so I aim to broaden my perspective on the world and become aware of experiences besides my own. Lastly, I hope to learn more about photography and improve my skills so that I can continue to produce great work and share what I have learned with others.  

Bonus question – Is there anything else you’d like Fujifilm fans to know about you or your photography?

I love photography because it isn’t just a hobby for me, it is an art form that has given me opportunities to grow as an individual, build relationships with others, and share my perspective on the world. I am grateful to have this opportunity and I hope to convey that through my work.

View Profile


 

Josh Lee

College/University – Syracuse University
Age – 19

1 – How did you first get interested in photography?

I was in Paris during a summer vacation and had the opportunity to go to a photography exhibition. I was astonished that photos could be considered as fine art. This versatility of photography made it seem like a perfect medium to express my perspective of the world, so I decided to give it a try. 

2 – What’s your favorite type of photography to shoot? (street, landscape, portrait, etc.) Why?

I love street photography first because I just love the raw situations that take place in a city. I still have a lot to learn, but it always gives me an adrenaline rush going to shoot in the city. Also, portrait photography was always a passion of mine because I always felt challenged when photographing people, and I love interacting with different people for the portraits. 

3 – What do you find most challenging about photography?

I think the most challenging thing about photography is to find your own shooting style and separating yourself from others. Everyone can take nice quality photos by buying a nice camera but finding the stories and framing the composition makes each photographer unique. This originality is the hardest part of photography for me. 

4 – What’s your favorite image you’ve shot, and why?

My favorite image that I shot was this shot of a skateboarder I met on campus at Syracuse. It was one of the first times that I just asked somebody on the street for a portrait, and it came out as I expected. It’s a very simple shot, but I love the story I have behind it. 

5 – What are you hoping to take away from Students of Storytelling?

From this project, I hope that I can make connections with people from various creative fields and truly learn how to properly tell a story. As a storyteller, I really want to share stories of creators from every field to show what they are like behind their products. 

Bonus question – Is there anything else you’d like Fujifilm fans to know about you or your photography?

I’m so stoked to learn and create during this special opportunity, and I hope everyone enjoys watching our journeys unfold!

View Profile


 

VISIT STUDENTS OF STORYTELLING