Julie Smith

Smith weather effects
One thing about having to come up with multiple photographs every day is to work the weather into them. I have always found the more the inclement the weather, the more interesting the photographs. Postal or delivery drivers in a heavy snow still performing their duties or plow drivers pushing snow and clearing roads, for me it’s a way to get a person doing their job, no matter the circumstances. Recently, a still lingering rain left the streets wet when the sun broke through a cloud bank, shining brightly off of the pavement, a leaving the lower cloud bank in the shadows causing a very dramatic look. The driver of the truck pulled over in front of me and I quickly stopped and ran in the street (as I’m prone to do) to get him as he delivered a package. I quickly asked his name and upon return to his truck, he was on his way. Over the years I’ve been known to say that I’d rather be lucky than good but preparation and lighting knowledge prepare me for sudden and fast-moving opportunities so that if I only have a very limited number of shots to quickly frame the photo and guesstimate the exposure, I can be close enough to get a quality and usable photo. And then sometimes it all comes together and you look at the image and just go “wow, that’s cool”.
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Julie Smith, born and raised in Jefferson City and grew up less than 10 miles from the current Jefferson City News Tribune office, a place where she has spent 30-plus years covering community events, activities, and life. Smith first became interested in photography when she worked on her high school’s yearbook staff. She bought a Kodak 110 Instamatic from JC Penney in Jefferson City unaware that she was beginning a lifelong journey. After high school graduation, her interest in photography was reignited when she received a Yashica 35mm Rangefinder and taught herself technical and compositional skills by trial and error. In 1982, she started work at Wright Camera Shop in Jefferson City, where she built a relationship with the News Tribune chief photographer, a role she would later take on. In 1989 she started at the News Tribune part-time and was hired full-time a couple months later. In December 2021, Smith will celebrate her 32nd anniversary with the paper, where she has received numerous prestigious awards and recognition, including being nominated for the Zonta Yellow Rose Woman of Achievement, the W.E. Hussman Employee of the Year Award for WEHCO Media’s Palmer Division of newspapers, Jefferson City’s Chamber of Commerce Exceptional Employee of the Year award, and a parade for “Julie Smith Day.”