Our new-look magazine is a showcase for visual storytelling.
When I was a photography student in the School of Art in the early 1990s, fine art photography really wasn’t my thing. I much preferred photojournalism. Ever since I can remember, I’ve been most impressed by the ability to create an image that could communicate without the need for many (if any) words, an image that could grab you by the throat, make your heart skip a beat, or freeze you in your tracks.
Visual storytelling has been a crucial component of our university’s magazine, first as Columns, and especially since our makeover in September into University of Washington Magazine. One of the most significant features of this new design, as I’m sure you noticed, is that it provides more opportunities to do the type of visual storytelling this university deserves.
Having more places and more ways to tell stories with storytelling imagery translates a more powerful, intimate way to connect with our readers. Yes, you already know a lot about this place as an alum or friend of the UW. But this place is always on the cutting edge of serving the greater good, be it in the arts or humanities or exploring the heavens or health care. I am continually blown away by what goes on here, and I am equally driven by the desire to tell those stories in the most eye-opening ways possible.
As someone with a degree in visual arts, I believe photography (and other imagery, for that matter) wield perhaps the most power to reach our hearts and souls. Just think of the most memorable images you have seen, and how they made you feel. That’s what we aim for here. But I am also a word guy, as I have a degree in journalism, and I know how a well-crafted story can cause the same reactions. Some of the pieces that have appeared in this magazine over the years still make my heart beat faster. But deep down, I believe it’s the visuals that hit us on a visceral level. That, after all, is our goal here at the magazine: to produce content that resonates with you, makes you think, and makes you proud to be connected to the UW.