About Me

My name is Caitlyn Leary and I am a third year Visual Communications major and Graphic Design minor at the University of South Carolina. I’m from Charlottesville, Va and talk about it entirely too much. I love anything design or art related, although I can’t say that I was very artistically gifted. My love for design came not from my inherent artistic ability, but rather my curious nature as a child. When I was 13 I had the chicken pox and was forced to stay home from school for a week. To pass the time, as any adolescent girl does, I began to teach myself Adobe Photoshop and HTML.

While those came easy to me, photography unfortunately has not. ISO, F-stop, and shutter speeds haunt me in my dreams. My first experience with photography was with my internship in the Fall of 2012. I was working with the University of South Carolina Athletic Department and one of my duties was to take photos during the home football games. I was given a press pass and access to almost everywhere in Williams-Brice Stadium. The goal was to capture the experience of a Carolina fan, from the tailgating before to the atmosphere in the stadium to the excitement outside the stadium after a big win. The goal of this assignment was not necessarily to take the best quality photos, but to capture a feeling. This was one of my favorite internship duties, I loved the sports atmosphere and being able to interact with people and this sparked my interest in sports marketing (although I later decided on a graphic design minor instead).  After gaining some experience with a DSLR camera, I thought I was ready for my introduction to photovisual course. I was wrong. My first photography class was, in short, a disaster. I had no clue as to what I was doing and any decent photograph I managed to take was pure luck. Now I am in an advanced photovisual course and this blog is dedicated to my learning of what true photography is in a world where everyone with a smartphone and Instagram thinks they’re a photographer.

Currently I am working with my roommate’s Nikon D5200 DSLR camera. So far the camera seems to be intuitive and user-friendly. The LCD monitor displays information about the picture (ISO, aperture, etc.) using images, which is much easier for me to understand than raw numbers. For example, when you change the aperture, an icon of the aperture gets larger or smaller depending on the setting. As a visual person, this is immensely helpful for me to grasp the difference between f/8 and f/22. Once I practice with the camera enough I will hopefully have a better understanding of the camera settings and will no longer rely on the icons, but for now they are a beneficial learning tool.

I am a Taurus to a tee, bull-headed and stubborn, which can me into trouble at times. Chipotle and Chick-fil-a are my two major food groups. I fall asleep during movies, but love a good TV show or book. I’m a cat AND dog person, but are allergic to both. I tend to ramble.

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