I love studying journalism because it’s practical. My journalism classes can be intimidating, challenging, or exhilarating—but they always seem to practice what they preach: show not tell.
Last Friday’s class was no exception. BJ Jurivich, local photographer, came in to share his expertise in photography and specifically, photojournalism.
He’s owned a his own studio for over 28 years, has taken photographs extensively for The Kankakee Daily Journal, and now teaches photojournalism as an adjunct professor.
Jurivich’s passion for the field was as evident as his skill taking photographs, and he was eager to share that knowledge with us. He gave several great pieces of advice:
1. Photograph honestly. The most important element of a good photograph is integrity. A photograph that honestly shows the environment and context of an image has the ability to move people both emotionally and ethically.
2. If you don’t have pride for what you do, someone else will take your place. Over and over, Jurivich emphasized the importance of pride in your work as a journalist, whether that is as a reporter, photographer, writer, or editor. Pride, passion, and commitment keeps you going when the stories get tough, or the days are stressful.
3. Stay until the last play is made. He was talking specifically about sports photography, but the core of this advice is about commitment and work ethic. When you are committed, you will persist until you get the best source, image, or quote—things which make the difference between a good story and a great one.
Practical advice for a practical field. Honesty. Pride. Commitment. All summed up in one final word from Jurivich, “If you want to stay in the business, you have to always do your best.”