Introduction to Photography

These are some of my favorite shots. I took all of these photos in the spring of 2017. This was my first time trying to take pictures in an aesthetic and creative way, with different techniques in mind.



Laramie’s oldest standing bar debuts expansion

September 12, 2017

Contact Jason Tays

Buckhorn Bar & Parlor


LARAMIE- The Buckhorn Bar has been in business since 1900, but after five months of construction, the bar held a grand opening for its New Parlor over the weekend.


The New Parlor is not just an add-on, but a fully functioning bar, independent from the other three in the downtown establishment.


“Previously we had some issues with ventilation, but this expansion features its own air system and allows the upstairs capacity to double to around 260 people,” Jason Tays, Buckhorn Bar & Parlor manager, said.


The New Parlor required an additional oak staircase to be built from scratch, creating a total of three separate entrances/exits. Exclusive to the innovation is a stage, the latest sound system technology, LED lighting and a large restroom.


“The grand opening went really well and I heard nothing but compliments,” Tays said. “Our operation ran smoothly and we are meeting our goals of improving our customer service and providing enjoyable entertainment for patrons.”


Marella Fox from Laramie agreed that she has a great night at the grand opening.


“I like how much more space there is upstairs now,” Fox said. “The music they were playing was awesome and I’m going to be making another visit in the near future.”


For the New Parlor, physical construction may be over but tweaks will be made throughout the semester.


“It is definitely a work in progress and will be continuously improved,” Tays said.


Some modifications will include colorful window lighting and an LED screen or projector.

The Buckhorn management also hopes to host several different live music acts that can use the brand-new stage.

The space may also be rented out for private occasions, outside of normal operating hours.


For those interested in checking it out, the New Parlor night club is now open every Thursday through Saturday, 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.


For inquiries or updates on upcoming events and specials, contact Tays at (307) 660-6740 or check .



Combining the multimedia production components- Blog 10, Final Project

Over the course of this semester, we have learned and practiced how to properly interview subjects, collect audio, take photos and hone our skills for online multimedia production. For this final project, it was our duty to combine all of our newfound knowledge to create an all-encompassing video. What better way to end this course than with video storytelling to sew it all together?

Annie and I partnered up once more (from the audio interview) because we worked so well together last time. Annie is a part of the women’s UW rugby team and she told me about their Rookie Rugby camp. I thought it was a great opportunity to shoot a promotional video story. The college rugby players help with the camp and assist in coaching.

Wyoming Rugby hosted their very first non-contact Rookie Rugby camp this November/December. You can browse their Facebook page here.


I had no previous video shooting or video editing experience, so I wasn’t sure how I was going to do with this project. I didn’t know what to expect and I figured we would have to try more than once to get the footage we were looking for.

I really enjoyed shooting this video. We used a small digital video camera to get a better quality than we would with our iPhones. For it being the first Rookie Rugby, the atmosphere at the camp was fun and informative. I had a great time watching the kids learn about rugby and their excitement to play. It quickly became obvious that teamwork is important to the coaches and players. I enjoyed getting in the action to record interesting footage.

There were quite a few technical difficulties when it came time to edit. Once we got everything running and understood the basics of Adobe Premiere, the video editing process came easy to us . After our stress passed over the technical issues, we were able to have a good time creating our video.

There wasn’t a lot that I didn’t enjoy about this assignment because it was a necessary learning process for us. I learned a lot about how to combine my skills and how to do basic editing with video, which turned out to have similarities with audio.

However, I can say I didn’t enjoy our encounter with technical difficulties. First, Adobe wasn’t cooperating and then we had problems figuring out how to transfer the video from our camera to the computer. It took about two hours to save our content. I learned that when dealing with so many different planes of technology, I have to plan extra time for unexpected events (in the case of computer crashes, long exporting or loss of content).

I was surprised that the kids didn’t mind being recorded. Some of them really liked it and opted for screen time. I was also surprised that the project overall wasn’t as difficult as it looked at first. We did record our footage on the last day of the camp and for this reason I wish we decided on our topic sooner. The camp was held three Saturdays before we shot our video. We could’ve had a better variety for the final outcome if we were able to go to the other camp days. Annie also mentioned that there were a lot more kids in attendance the previous week.

Of all the skills I learned in this course, I think I am least likely to use video in my career. I am not opposed to it and I am happy with how our video turned out, but I think it would take a lot more practice to use it in my career. Shooting and editing video is the most difficult since it combines several aspects of journalism. It is something that takes time to become good at. Hopefully I can learn more about video and will be up to the challenge in my future career.

P.S. I am sad that (due to the technical difficulties) other students in this class next year might not be able to do this final project. I think it was an awesome way to tie up the semester and is a great test to our skills/knowledge.


Captured by Kiana- Vanessa’s senior session

After the photojouralism assignment (blog 5), I felt really inspired. I saw the world in a different way once I had the camera in my hands. Seeing the same old surroundings in a new light motivated me to take more pictures. The perfect opportunity for me to practice came along when my cousin, Vanessa, asked me to shoot her senior pictures. I went out with my sister’s camera -on an extremely windy day- and this is what we ended up with…well a few. I would love any type of feedback!


Tweeting everyday encounters is a mindless action for most. It’s easy and fun to immediately tweet a thought, quote, joke or song lyric. When I learned that our 9th blog post was to live-tweet an event, it suddenly didn’t seem so easy.

It’s much more intimidating and difficult to send out thoughtful tweets that are in third person, interesting, accurate and informative. Using hashtags is easy and fun, but pulling quotes from two interviews while making it work in 140 characters or less seemed questionable. Needless to say, I was nervous for this assignment.

I am familiar with Twitter and have had one since I was a freshman in high school. I always liked it better than Facebook because it was less complicated. And, well, my mom didn’t have Twitter.

I decided to report on an event called Porn Dies at 7220 with guest speaker Jenna Divis. I initially wanted to live tweet a different speech called My Grandfather Would Have Shot Me. I ended up being way too invested in the event that I forgot to tweet! From that I learned that I needed to choose something a little less intriguing to me. I learned about Porn Dies from the Facebook events feature, as well as a flyer in the union. I thought it sounded interesting and newsworthy because it was the first event for the brand new organization on campus.

Porn Dies at 7220 is a group of people whose mission is to spread awareness about the effects of porn addiction and its correlation to sexual abuse.

The official flyer posted for Porn Dies at 7220 on Dec. 1


The whole ordeal ended up being easier than I initially thought. It was still challenging, though. I felt impolite because of the fact that it looked like I was texting during Jenna Divis’ speech. I sat in the back corner to try to avoid being a distraction.

This isn’t an event I would have normally attended, so it was educational for me. Divis taught the audience that porn addiction is a serious issue; it is alive and thriving. She opened up and shared her personal story in an effort to prevent it from happening in the future. It was emotional to hear her view on porn (as a victim of sexual assault) and she provided many surprising statistics.


I enjoyed attending the event with a mission in mind, which made me more attentive. It was difficult to tweet certain quotes when Divis was speaking fast. I didn’t know how long the speech would be, so it was also hard to organize a beginning, middle and end to my series of tweets. I struggled with putting it together to make sense for my “followers” or for someone who was not there. It was very easy to hit the 10-tweet requirement.

In conclusion, live-tweeting an event is interesting and a bit of a gamble because its like you’re leading yourself down stairs in the dark. You don’t know what’s going to happen, but you just go with it and try your best.

I can definitely see myself using social media in my future career. I realized I can use social media now, to build my own brand and use it for a reference when applying for a job.I learned a lot from this assignment, mostly how to use Twitter from a journalistic standpoint. In a social media management, I definitely think Twitter would be the most difficult platform to use. It might not be obvious, but several strategies are involved when you’re tweeting with a purpose.

Critique of social media management, Coca-Cola vs. Pepsi

The purpose of this assignment is to explore the way these companies use and manage their social media accounts. By assessing the strategies used by big companies on social media, we can make conclusions about their brand and social management.

I chose to critique the social media accounts of Coca-Cola and Pepsi for a few reasons. For one, I love both of their products and I’m not particularly biased towards either. Some people are die-hard for one or the other (my grandma might as well be the poster child for Pepsi). Two, I knew that these companies have a worldwide presence, which would give me a lot to analyze and evaluate. Coke and Pepsi have always been in major competition, so that added an edge as well. I wanted to take it upon myself to see what techniques they each use online.


I can start off by saying that each company was very easy to find on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn. I’m unsure if Coke or Pepsi have Snapchat accounts. I couldn’t find a verified account for either one. If they do have a Snapchat, the accessibility  of the accounts is compromised and time consuming. I became slightly frustrated that it wasn’t as easy to find them on Snapchat as it was on the other platforms.

As I took the time to explore the different accounts for each company, I noticed some similarities right away. Both companies post consistently and frequently on their social media accounts. It appears that they each try to make at least one post a day. I saw that both companies replied to negative and positive feedback with their fans/customers on Facebook and Twitter. Coke and Pepsi barely use GIFS or hashtags. I also noticed that both brands were more active around the holidays, attempting to get their audience excited about upcoming festivities. Pinterest and LinkedIn were very similar.

It appears as though the main goal was marketing, which is fairly obvious. I think they could try to be more creative in a way that it doesn’t always feel like an ad. Even though it is obvious that marketing and engagement are the main strategies used in this situation, Pepsi and Coke still do a good job at using the elements from the article 8 Essential Elements of a Social Media Marketing Strategy. They could work on narrowing who they want their ideal customers to be because it seems as though the target market is broad.

Although these two companies were similar in many ways, I was also able to identify some differences. The first huge difference I noticed was that Coke has a much larger following on all platforms, except LinkedIn. For example, on Facebook Coke has around 99.6 million likes, while Pepsi has 35.8 million likes. This could be due to the fact that maybe people like Coke better, or maybe Pepsi’s current strategies are not meeting their audience needs. With that being said, Pepsi needs to step their game up. I think several concepts in this article could be taken into consideration for them. It would be a good idea for them to look at their competition and note the main differences to gain insight on what users like.

Both Coke and Pepsi respond to their audience, but Coke also responds in Spanish to their bilingual consumers! I thought that was pretty awesome. That definitely gave them a leg up on Pepsi. Furthermore, Pepsi responds frequently in a generic, impersonal way…many times it was identical to a previous response with a different customer. This caught my attention because our guest speakers Jessica and Charlie warned against this. They said that it is not satisfying enough for the customer when you respond like you are Siri. You must make it personal to avoid losing business.

Pepsi appeared to have some celebrity endorsements (atheletes, pop stars) on their pages. I didn’t come across a celeb appearance with Coke. Coke used more humor in their posts than Pepsi did. Anna Rader noted that her audience likes it when she is playful and humorous, yet remaining professional.

3 ways that Coke is using social media in an effective way:

  1. Coke engages with their audience on a more personal level. They ask fans what their favorite food to pair with Coke is.
  2. Coke uses many pictures and videos to catch their audience’s attention.
  3. Coke makes a good attempt at appealing to all walks of life.                                                 My advice to them would be to make more posts that aren’t just video (quotes, promotions, hashtags), add more emotion to the posts (inflict feelings), and to invent new products to keep people interested.

3 ways that Pepsi is using social media in an effective way:

  1. Involving celebrities so that fans feel they are familiar with the brand.
  2. Always promoting new or limited-time products and reinventing old ones (staying current and relevant) to avoid monotony.
  3. Being an advocate for career opportunities and encouraging fans to look into working for them.

My advice for Pepsi includes also adding more emotion to their posts, responding in a heartfelt way rather that impersonal (add Spanish to that) and working on some of the social media management tips to gain a more even following with their competitor.

Overall, I would say that Coca-Cola’s social management team is doing a bit better than Pepsi. I think it has a lot to do with customer interaction. Either way, I still love both!

*sounds of me cracking open a fresh can of soda*


Annie Todd audio profile, edited


This was my first time ever dealing with audio and editing audio. Overall, I think it was a positive learning experience! I gained a lot of knowledge throughout this assignment. I think the best way to learn to do something is to just do it. That’s how it was for me to use Audacity.

To be honest, I’m not the most tech-savvy person…I definitely learn something new every day and I’m becoming more familiar with it. I struggled with converting and downloading files and knowing where to save them. I took advantage of the class “work days”, which I think tremendously helped me. If I hadn’t gone and I tried to do it on my own, it would’ve been a disaster. Being able to ask questions and have someone walk me through it in person made it a lot easier.

Once I learned the different ways to edit an audio track, practicing was the second step. After cutting a few parts of the track, I decided building the track was more suited for a beginner. After playing with Audacity for a couple of hours, it came easy to me.

I also thanked myself for being proactive in the raw interview. I decided to ask questions in an order that went naturally with storytelling. I actually didn’t move the audio (chronologically speaking) and was able to build from left to right.

When it came time to export the project, I had a lot of trouble. It took us an hour to figure out why it wasn’t working. It was difficult to identify the issue and I had to download the “Lame” file twice. The only thing I would change is to make the exporting process easier and more usable for beginners.

Aside from the technological issues, I truly enjoyed this process and I am happy with the outcome. I was surprised since I didn’t expect to have as much fun as I did, and how it came naturally after the first try. I enjoyed interviewing someone I didn’t know because I learned from Annie and her story. The assignment had a personal feel to it because we each got to talk about something important to us. It was cool to have that chance to take Annie’s story and put my spin on it, helping her to share it with the world.

She certainly amplified my desire to study abroad!