Students Take Yearbook Photos Into Their Own Hands

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Students Take Yearbook Photos Into Their Own Hands

Nhi Nguyen '19 taking a yearbook photo. Credit: Simon Kim.

Nhi Nguyen '19 taking a yearbook photo. Credit: Simon Kim.

Nhi Nguyen '19 taking a yearbook photo. Credit: Simon Kim.

Nhi Nguyen '19 taking a yearbook photo. Credit: Simon Kim.

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If you walked around the quad or the bridge recently, you may have noticed more than a few photography sessions. These weren’t for an assignment, but rather students taking their senior photos — and saving some cash at the same time.

Rather than pay for the professional shoots with April Eve Photography — the South Hadley-based photographer contracted to take senior photos — some students who’ve had experience in photography decided to take senior portraits for their friends.

Minh Le, a senior from Vietnam, offered to take senior portraits for many students. Even though Minh’s specialty is film making, everyone loves the pictures that he took.

“I have always loved photography and I’m pretty comfortable with a camera so I figured that taking a portrait for my friend wouldn’t be that difficult,” said Minh. As far as compensation, Minh joked, “They can always pay with Dunkin’.”

Minh never planned for his service to be so widely used.

“At first I was just talking to a friend and he was complaining about the cost of a session with a professional photographer, when he only needed one photo to submit for the yearbook,” explained Minh. “And I was like: ‘Let me do it for you bro,’ and that’s how it all started. Before I realized it, people started to come up to me and asked if I could take their photos and I simply just said yes.”

Chelsea Clark, the Editor-in-Chief of the Senior section for The Log, the yearbook, tried both the professional and the amateur route, and had a positive experience with a student photographer.

“I got my pictures taken twice by both a professional photographer and by my friend,” said Chelsea. “I ended up loving the ones she [the friend] took more. I had more freedom with what I did and where I took them, whereas back home he told me to stand by one tree and that was the location.”

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