Ohio University

Lack of face-to-face interaction has not stopped the Society of Photographic Illustrators

Published: October 8, 2020 Author: Olivia Mayernik

The world has transitioned into being a virtual place and has left many organizations with the task of trying to keep their members engaged while not being in person. A major part of the college experience is to be present on campus so when that shifted, organizations on campus had to adapt as well.

The Society of Photographic Illustrators (SPI) is an organization on the Athens Campus that has done an excellent job engaging members through the current virtual world. SPI is a smaller organization with around ten members, but they still make an impact in students’ lives.

SPI is continuing to host weekly Zoom calls to encourage its members to be creative. One way they are doing this is by having weekly challenges. One challenge was to take 24 unique photos while standing in the same spot, which they then share at their weekly meetings.

 “We wanted to keep this organization full of creativity and make it a fun experience for our members,” SPI president Akira Jakkson said. “By doing weekly challenges it keeps things exciting and helps keep our members engaged while still having the creative aspect to the organization that could have easily gotten lost virtually.”

Jakkson sunfower
Another one of Jakkson's photos from the 24 unique photos while standing in the same spot challenge.

In addition to the weekly challenges SPI often has guest speakers, typically professors, who have a background in photography. SPI has achieved the goal of still being a relevant organization while maintaining members’ creativity, which is so important to their identity.

The Society of Photographic Illustrators has worked hard to keep their members engaged during this period of virtual learning. Instead of being complacent, they have risen above and have given their members a great experience virtually.

Eli King SPI photos
Three out of the 24 photos SPI student Eli King captured for the unique photos in the same spot challenge.