Photography graduate Sara Anderson shares how an experiential learning opportunity has enhanced her time at BYU
Even from the road and through the car window, you could tell she had a process and knew what she was doing. It was planned. It was habit. This woman, with her orange basket full of freshly washed clothes and a handful of pins, was carefully hanging up each article of clothing to sit in the sun and let the wind do its job. The blue of the sky, the green grass, and the muted tones of her clothes all came together and I knew immediately we needed to pull over and capture this sweet, simple moment. We were on our way to another iconic location to photograph some landscapes, but I couldn’t let this quiet moment happening en route pass me by.
I hurried to get my camera and BYU photography professor Paul Adams put the car into park. Brinnan — another photo student on the trip — and I walked over to the kind woman and asked if we could take a few photos. With a laugh, she responded yes and carried on with her chore. We talked about the wind and clean clothes, about habits and family. In talking with her, I felt an honesty and kindness that still touches me. She loved her small chore and the routine it brought her, and I feel blessed that I could capture a small part of it while on my field study this summer.
I had the opportunity to travel through the islands of Northern Scotland and the Faroe Islands with six other students and three professors as part of a field study. Each of us worked on a project while we were abroad. Mine focused on creating portraits of the local people, talking with them and learning about what makes their heritage rich and lively. Through the process of meeting people, talking with them for a moment about their lives and capturing a portrait, I made connections with and learned from various people. This study abroad provided a unique opportunity to learn about people and myself, something I could not have experienced in the classroom.
The publication of student articles allows the College of Fine Arts and Communications to highlight the experiential learning opportunities and behind-the-scenes experiences of students and faculty and tell stories with a unique voice and point of view. Submit your story at cfac.byu.edu.