Friday, April 14, 2017

Samples From My Photojournalism Class

This spring I have been enrolled in a Photojournalism class. As a student pursuing a MJD major, you're required to take either Photojournalism or Digital Film. I plan on taking both, but right now I am only taking Photojournalism. Throughout the semester I have been working on tons of projects for the class. Here are some of my favorite pictures with a little bit of the story behind them!

For our first assignment we were asked to go off campus and take portraits of at least 10 people we didn't know. I took this photo of Dammy Mustapha in the Downtown Mall.
Some of my friends play in a men's league hockey team. Before doing varsity sporting events, I wanted to test out my use of action shots on the game! Pictured her is David Clemmer, class of 2018.
I later went to a Nordic Ski Race at the Trapp Family Lodge and took pictures for the St. Mike's team. This picture is of Liam Schmelzle, class of 2019.

One of our assignments was to capture honest emotion and interaction. I chose this picture of my three best friends playing in the snow on our first big snowfall day. I used the picture for the interaction piece. (Left to right, Sarah Rodgers '19, Gabby Ratte '19, Kristen Stec '19)

This picture of Lance Reynolds, class of 2019, was used for the honest emotion part of the assignment. 

My roommate Kristen wanted to try out the camera so on the day of a snowstorm we walked around campus to capture the true beauty. (This picture is of me!)

More cute snowy campus pictures!

Last one, I swear!

For one of the assignments we were randomly selected a partner in the class and we needed to photograph them throughout the week in order to capture a day in the life. I chose not to use one of the photos of my classmate, but here is one that she took of me.

This assignment was to work on environmental portraits, meaning a picture of someone in an environment that shows who they are. Here is a photo of Sarah Rodgers '19, a student studying Environmental Studies. 

Elly Moore '19 plays the trombone in the school's band and the church band. 
Here's another picture of Elly! Our professor really encourages us to try new things with our projects so I tried a couple of different angles when photographing Elly. To me, the hardest part of this assignment was telling people how to pose and where to look. 

One last Environmental portrait. Here is my friend, Ethan Brookner '20 hammocking (a very popular hobby at SMC) on our first warm day this week!

For the sports project I photographed one of the men's lacrosse games. This picture is from their game last week at SMC against Assumption. 

For our end of the semester project we must create either a picture story or an audio slideshow of a social issue or an interesting person. Although I am not finished with this project yet, my plan is to make an audio slideshow about Helen Parent, my grandma, who has been voted Vermont's best maple cook four different times. She's amazing and she lives off of the annual maple festival in Saint Albans, Vermont! (I promised I wouldn't share what she is making until after the cooking contest is done, sorry!)
I hope you enjoyed checking out some of my projects! If you have any questions or would like to stay up to date on what's going on in my life, feel free to email me or follow me on social media!

Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Monday, March 27, 2017

Spring Break: A Time to Serve Others

During the fall semester I filled out an application, got an interview, and was accepted to do a service trip through MOVE's extended service trips here at SMC. I spent the last couple of weeks leading up to spring break preparing for a service trip to McCreary County, Kentucky to help renovate the houses of people in need through the Christian Appalachian Project's Workfest. I know this sounds just as cliche as you'd expect, but this was easily the most rewarding experience of my life.
We hopped off the plane in Lexington and immediately couldn't resist taking a picture with Big Lex. Kentucky is the horse capital of the world!

I started spring break by flying with my group of eight students, one student leader (Bri Jones), and one staff leader (Deacon Michael) to Lexington, Kentucky.

From there we rented two cars and stayed overnight in a hotel. The next day we took off to Workfest's camp base where we would eat, sleep, and partake in devotion for the remainder of the week. Our trip took a little twist when the car that I was riding in, a Toyota Camry, was rear ended by an 18-wheeler on the highway. DON'T WORRY, everybody was safe without a drop of blood to be found. The car however, was totaled. Between this event, and getting lost in the very rural parts of Kentucky, we finally arrived at Workfest, only seven hours later then planned. Although we had a rough start, we all absolutely loved this trip!

The way Workfest was set up, was they split up the nine different colleges that were there into different groups. In my group, the brown group, I was the only member from Saint Michael's College. This was the group that I worked with daily to renovate the house we were working on.
Throughout the week, I met some truly amazing people, crew leaders that work and volunteer for CAP, students from other colleges that came to volunteer, and the family that we were helping. I learned how to take apart and build a porch, redo siding on a house, put together a roof, and most of all, use a hammer better than I ever thought I would in my life.

Mahatma Ghandi once said, "The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others." At the end of the week, the volunteers at Workfest showed us this quote and it truly resonated with me. Over the past year I have been struggling with depression. Now I'm not saying that going on a service trip will help somebody control their depression, but taking a break from your own life and the things that you feel are upsetting you, to help others change their lives, might be a good place to begin.
On our last day everyone in the group signed our names and wrote little messages on the bottom of one of the steps of the porch before we nailed it in!

Again, if you have any questions or would like to keep up with my life on a more frequent basis, feel free to email me or follow me on social media!

Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Friday, February 24, 2017

My Typical Day: Spring 2017 Edition

What does a typical day for Natalie Jackson, a sophomore, MJD major look like????

8:30am: Rise & Shine!
Today I woke up at 8:30 so that I had enough time to wake up, get dressed and get ready for my day before I headed over to Alliot for breakfast. What's my go-to breakfast option? Most days I get plain oatmeal with brown sugar and a chopped up banana. Depending on what kind of tater tots there are, you can always catch those on the side of my plate too.

9:45am-12:05pm: "I go to college to get more knowledge."
This semester, I have two classes each day. On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, I have Photojournalism in a Digital Age and Fourth Semester Spanish. On Tuesday and Thursday I have Social Media and Managerial Accounting.

12:05pm: "I wanna see you workout" -J. Cole
Directly after my classes are finished, I head back to my room to change and then I go to gym. Depending on the day I'll run outside, or just head over to the gym to go on the treadmill and/or lift weights. If I'm feeling very enthusiastic, I will run six miles (this rarely happens), but most of the time I stick to a solid three miles.

1:20pm: My favorite exercise is a cross between a lunge and a crunch. I call it Lunch.
As soon as I'm done working out, I take my sweaty self over to Alliot with hopes of smoothies and zucchini fries for my second meal of the day. I meet one of roommates and we normally sit in the dining hall people watching for a while.

2:15pm: The part of the day that we all dread the most.... homework, staring out the window, and crossing things off of my to-do list.
From 2:15 until dinner time, I sit at my desk, slowly, reluctantly, doing my homework. Although I really don't like doing homework, I find it better to do it during the day and get it over with, so that I can do whatever I want to do with my free time after dinner. Most recently I have also been working on a couple of different applications. As an MJD major, it is required to study abroad, so I have been working on the Fall 2017 application. I am also looking for a summer internship, so I've been busy applying to many jobs too!

5:30pm: Hands down my favorite part of every day.
I LOVE DINNER. Not because of the food, but because of the time I spend with my friends. All 11 of us squeeze around a circle table in Alliot and talk about our days. Always so eager to share the hilarious things that happened to us throughout the day, or discuss our plans for the evening or weekends, our table is always filled with chatter and laughter. I live for dinner time. To me, dinner time is the moment I look around and realize how thankful I am to have such a great group of friends like the ones I have.

6:45pm: Netflix and Chill? Intramural Soccer?
After dinner I had back to my humble abode with my roommates. Normally we spend time talking, or I catch up on some Netflix while they finish up their homework. On occasion I will have an intramural game or a meeting for something I'm involved in (extended service trip, founder's society, social ambassadors, group projects, etc.).

8:00pm: Cash us watching the Bachelor, howbow dat.
By 8pm everybody is ready to watch tv. Our personal favorite these days is The Bachelor. My friends and I (boys included) gather around our common room in Quad Commons to eat popcorn and live off of the drama Corrine and Nick supply.

11:00pm: Lights out!
I try to be in bed by 11 every night. I really rely on beauty sleep and most of the time I get sick if I don't get enough of it. Some nights I will write a list of the things I need to do for the next day and have it set out on my desk to accomplish.

I hope you enjoyed hearing about my average day as a college student! Feel free to email me with questions or check out my social media sites to see the highlights!

Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Back at It

We're finally back at school! Although a month vacation from the stress of school work was much needed, I am very happy to be back at school with my roommates and friends!
One struggle for me when I go home is not having a daily routine, so I'm very glad to be back to the schedule of waking up, going to class, doing homework, working out, dinner, and free time (aka Netflix and chill).

Over break I was so happy to see all of my family and friends from home, including all of my siblings who came home for the holidays. One of my sisters flew from California, one from North Carolina, and my brother came up from school in Rhode Island.

What were the highlights of my winter break?

My siblings and I were all able to be together for the first time since our cousin's wedding in July!

My Dad "rented" a dog for my siblings and I to love over the holidays since we're all avid dog lovers and our own passed away 2 years ago. Unfortunately, Lola (an 11 month old Leonburger) had to go back after 3 days because my brother was allergic to her. :(

My friends from high school and I were able to meet up!

Another one of my cousin's go married and had their wedding and reception in Charlotte, Vermont!

My mom, dad, grandma, and I went to Aruba for a week! I actually missed the first day of classes back because I was traveling (Oops!).
I got to snorkel as my birthday gift from my Grandma! (My birthday is coming up this Sunday, January 22nd! Eeeep!)

And I was able to watch the sunset in Aruba :)
I hope everyone had a wonderful and safe break! Now let's get back in the school grind and take the chaos (and cold weather) with a smile! :)

Feel free to follow me on social media for more updates!

Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

The Final Stretch

These past few weeks from Thanksgiving break to Winter break are always the most stressful for college students. I worked on two final projects, one group project, one group essay, one individual essay, and I still have two finals to go!
Here are just a few of the keepsakes from the moments that have helped me take my mind off of homework and finals for a little bit (in order to keep myself sane).

My friend's dog, Bubba, came to visit and clearly I've never been happier. Dogs are the best way to ease your mind. Bubba is a 120 pound Bernese Mountain Dog!

My friend Molly absolutely crushed the Ugly Christmas Sweater competition with her Darth Vader sweater and matching mug!
I took a trip downtown to buy some Christmas presents and study at a local coffee shop, Uncommon Grounds. Of course when I'm in the neighborhood I always indulge in a cupcake from My Little Cupcake. This one is flavored Cinnamon Toast Crunch!
Finals week definitely stresses me out, but I'm thankful for these great things that keep me plugging away. Now, because this song has been stuck in my mind for literally a week, here's a gif of it accurately representing how I feel during my study sessions.

Keep plugging away and feel free to follow me on social media or email me with any questions you have!

Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Monday, November 28, 2016

11/21-11/27: Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. Obviously, I love to indulge on delicious foods all day long, but I'm also so happy to be around friends and family for a week. This Thanksgiving break my friend from school, Liam, stayed at my house with my family. Since he's from Minnesota it isn't always easy to go home over short breaks. Luckily (or maybe unluckily since my town is boring with not much to do) we were able to host him for the holiday.
This Thanksgiving I am thankful for a lot of things.
1. My brother got a job for after he graduates from college in May.
2. My family is all healthy.
3. I was able to see my cousins dogs.
4. My other cousin's kid has begun to walk. He's growing up so fast!
5. My mom made me TONS of delicious food while I was home.
6. I was able to savor a great breakfast from my favorite restaurant, The Dairy Center.
7. Everyone had safe and happy trips to and from home on the holidays.

As part of Random Acts of Kindness at SMC, my friends and I wrote what we're thankful for. I'm thankful for my mom's taco salad and my philosophy tutor, Mike Ruble.
One of my guilty pleasures? My Little Cupcake. Pictured here is me stuffing my face with their apple cider donut flavor!
I love seeing my friends from high school when I go home for break. Here's my friend Sarah and I!
Here's Liam and I still smiling after a week spent together playing card games with my family, watching movies, eating turkey, and doing a 1000 piece puzzle!
For your weekly dog picture, here is me with my roommate's dog, Jack! Jackypoo is a great dog and I'm so jealous she got to spend her break with him in Carmel, NY.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and time off of work! To stay tuned on my life or to have your questions answered, feel free to message me and follow me on social media!
Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski

Monday, November 14, 2016

11/7-11/13: Poverty

This week's theme is poverty. I had two nights of service trip orientation to prepare all the students going on extended service trips. I was accepted to go on a service trip to Kentucky over spring break! The first night of orientation was about poverty. A professor at the school who came from Iran talked to us about his childhood and how he came from nothing and worked his way up to where he is now, here. The next night we discussed the differences in cultures with a professor in the anthropology department. After attending both nights, I have realized how grateful and thankful I am for the way I was raised and the resources I had growing up.

Here are some snapchats from the rest of my week!

My roommate Kristen and I took a stroll down Church Street in Burlington and went on a nice dinner date to American Flatbread!
My team, Volleyciraptors, for the Volleyball for Veterans fundraiser! We had so much fun even though we lost all three of our games!
As a Vermonter, it is a necessity to bring Vermont Maple Syrup to brunch every weekend! Nothing is better than Vermont's gold.
On Saturday I was a lunch host for the first time at our second Sample St. Mike's fall open house! I love talking to families about St. Mike's because I can go on and on talking about this school! :)
Volleyball season is over. I'm proud of the team and happy for my amazing roommate on being named one of the captains for next year! Even though they had some tough losses, it was a great season to watch!
The weather has been so nice lately that my friends and I were able to do our homework outside! I'm loving the 62 degree weather in November. Here's my gorgeous friend, Kara!
Unfortunately, I didn't see a dog this week, but here is an older picture of my childhood dog! My family had Shelby for 11 years before we had to put her down my senior year of high school. She was the best dog ever! We aren't certain what kind of dog she was, but we think she was a mix of a golden retriever and a black lab.

For more stories and to see what I'm up to on a daily basis, feel free to contact me or follow me on social media!

Snapchat: natalierj
Instagram: @natjackski
Twitter: @natjackski