I work at Children’s Relief International, a non-profit based in Rockwall, Texas. We partner with national leaders (many of whom are DTS grads) to take the light of Christ to those in deep poverty. Like many non-profits, the employees wear many hats, but I serve mainly as the staff photojournalist. I travel throughout the year to visit our national leaders around the world and help tell the stories of how God works through their ministries.
My title might read “photojournalist,” but my time in the media arts department at DTS taught me to view my role differently. The people I photograph and interview confide in me with their stories and I seek to craft them in a way that respects and honors each person. It’s not about the photographs and it’s not about the stories. It is about the people. This is how we love people well.
When I think of my days at DTS, I remember Arts Week, Eikon meetings, Creativity Cafe, and conversations with Dr. Sandra Glahn in her office. DTS prepared me to teach truth and love well. They helped me articulate how the role of art and worship impacts my work as an artist. I remember sitting in Dr. Burns’s anthropology class and diving into discussions about human dignity. I learned that all people are created in the image of God, whether we are Christians or not. So how does this impact me as a photographer? It changes everything. I don’t want to take photos that demean or ignite pity. Instead, I strive to take photographs that honor those in need. My desire is to show the beauty of God within all of God’s creation. As storytellers, our team here at CRI has a great responsibility to tell the stories entrusted to us with respect and honor.