OU junior, Abby Huckelbury has navigated her way through school using her faith in God and her determination to be a photojournalist. Huckelbury admitted that while it hasn’t always been easy, she knows that it will be worth it one day when she is able to tell stories through her photos.
Take me through a day in the life of Abby, do you stick to certain schedules or does each day look different?
Well, each day is sort of different. I mean my classes are always the same but my day really just depends on who I hang out with.
Explain to me a little bit about who you are today.
This is kinda a hard question! I think I’m someone who is extremely loyal and trustworthy. I feel like I’m bragging on myself (laughs) I’m also super honest, which is both good and bad because being honest can make me confrontational. Like I’m not afraid to say something if something is bothering me you know? I don’t know if you’ve ever done the enneagram test but I’m an 8, which is like the “challenger” or whatever so. Umm, so I know this can sound like “cheesy” or like “ya okay,” but I honestly find my identity in Christ. Like my faith is something that is really important to me in my life, and so I really try to remind myself to be christlike and like reflect God’s love towards people.
What events in your life lead you to become a journalism major?
When I was around the age of 9 I asked for a “fancy camera” for Christmas, and that was kinda the first step into this whole endeavor. I just started taking pictures everywhere, like around the neighborhood and like holidays with my family. Then I joined the yearbook staff in middle school and high school and I just really found my passion for photography and I’ve just always known that that’s what I want to do in life is like photojournalism. Like throw me in the jungle with my camera and let me do my thing.
Has there ever been a time that you thought about changing your major? Why or why not?
I actually thought about changing schools at one point. I love OU but I never want to write, like I don’t like it and the only thing I wanna do is photography. I wanna tell stories with pictures, not words. So then I started to think like, do I need to go to an art school? But at the end of the day, the foundation of telling stories, even with pictures, is journalism so.
Is there anyone in the field of photojournalism that inspires you? What about them do you look up to?
I think Paul Nicklen is pretty cool. His pictures are always really inspiring. I guess I just look up to him because he’s so passionate. Like to him, photography is more of a tool for wildlife conservation and he works really hard to make sure his voice is heard.
Who is paul Nicklen, what kind of pictures does he take?
Paul is a wildlife photographer for National Geographic. He mainly shoots like polar bears and penguins and he does a lot of conservation work. Originally I think he was a marine biologist but then he found out that he could have a bigger impact on the world as a photographer.
What is something that inspires you for the future of journalism?
I think its really inspiring that with just one picture, or one story, you can impact and really make a difference in the world.
What do you hope to be doing in 5-10 years from now?
I want to be taking pictures and traveling the world. I’m so passionate about wildlife photography and like this big beautiful world that we live in and I just want to help document and preserve it while I still can. So ya, somewhere in a jungle with absolutely nothing but my camera and God’s creatures would be nice.