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Member Spotlight: Jack Tatham

Updated: Sep 4, 2023

Sophomore Jack Tatham's Summer Experience at the Ohio State Fair

This past summer, I had the opportunity to intern at the Ohio State Fair for 12 days. I worked as a staff photographer to capture assigned events and beautiful moments throughout the fairgrounds. One minute, I would be taking photos on the Ferris wheel, and the next, I would be running to photograph the birth of a baby cow.

As rewarding as this experience was, it was not light work. My days would start at 9 in the morning, and I was dismissed at 9 p.m. However, I would stay until two the following day because I wanted to do as much work as possible.

While working, I would travel with my heavy backpack full of photo equipment in 90-degree heat and sunlight. It was a necessity to stay hydrated and build up an endurance. After creating engaging images of countless events during the fair’s hours, I would look through my near-full SD card, make selects, and upload a couple thousand RAW files to a hard drive. By this time of night, I was always hungry, dehydrated, and tired, but seeing the photos I took throughout the day was a reward.

The super moon glowing orange above the Ferris wheel at the Ohio

State Fair on July 31, 2023.

Even though being a photographer for the Ohio State Fair had challenges, my hard work paid off. My supervisor, Daniel Owen, recognized my work ethic and would give me exceptional photo opportunities. Daniel Owen is a VISCOM alum photojournalist who is based in Romania. Throughout my internship, he taught me abundant information and techniques that allowed me to improve my performance over 12 days.

I obtained more practice, skill, and knowledge and made meaningful connections that continue to build my network as an aspiring photojournalist. Overall, my experience as a staff photographer for the Ohio State Fair was challenging but 100 percent worth it.

A cow gives birth on the opening day of the Ohio State Fair on July 26, 2023.

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