Exposure You Can't Buy

Exposure You Can't Buy


Patience, the ability to not give up on a difficult task, and to keep trying at something you want to accomplish are three keys to the Iowa 4-H Camera Corps program, sponsored annually by Nationwide Agribusiness. Since inception in 2004, this program has substantially grown with more than 100 youth applying to participate this year. Youth from across the Midwest have been involved in the program, including participants from Iowa, Missouri, Kansas, Wyoming, and Arkansas.

Visit the Iowa 4-H Camera Corps website

See the top 39 photos of 2010

2010 Iowa 4-H Camera Corps PhotoPatience, the ability to not give up on a difficult task, and to keep trying at something you want to accomplish are three keys to the Iowa 4-H Camera Corps program. Started in 2004, the first year focused on capturing Iowa State Fair-goers favorite things during the fair’s sesquicentennial. One hundred 4-H members from across Iowa were asked to photograph the events that were important or a “must-see” for fair visitors. The best images that were taken throughout the day were enlarged and then put on display for the rest of the fair. After the 2004 Iowa State Fair, all of the enlarged photos were donated to the Iowa Archives, where they still can be seen on display today.

This program has substantially grown since 2004. Youth from all around the Midwest have been involved in the Iowa 4-H Camera Corps, including youth from Missouri, Kansas, Wyoming, and Arkansas.

Each year’s theme for Camera Corps is different. In 2010, the theme was Iowa prairies. Members were asked to take photos of prairie settings at different times of the year, preferably in all four seasons, to see the changes in the same area throughout the year.

“For 2011, there are more than 100 applications from Iowa, Kansas and Arkansas. 64 of those youth have already submitted their photos of rural Iowa architecture.” Mitch Hoyer, 4-H Youth Program Specialist shared. “These youth will also be participating in various special challenges throughout the year including special submissions for doorways and main streets, as well as gathering and meeting places.”

Hoyer  reflects on this program, “[It] gives youth many opportunities to explore the world around them. There are interesting things everywhere, you just have to go find them.” 

During the summer, the youth involved in this program attend a seminar at Iowa State University, listen to speakers and go on tours related to that year’s theme. After the year of Camera Corps is over, well-known photographers, newspaper journalists, and staff critique each individual photo, give feedback to the members, and choose the top 12 pictures to be featured in the annual calendar of Nationwide Agribusiness, the sponsor of this program.

Tim Florer is a published photographer who has worked with Camera Corps since 2004.

“This program doesn’t just teach youth how to use a camera; it teaches them what life is really about. It teaches them how to slow down and look at the beauties in life. It also gives youth exposure to something new that you can’t just buy anywhere,” says Florer.
The Iowa 4-H Foundation is thankful to Nationwide Agribusiness for sponsoring this program since inception. “Nationwide’s continued support of this program allows Iowa’s youth to gain experiences with photography that might not otherwise be possible,” said Joe Leisz, executive director of the Iowa 4-H Foundation.

Learn more about Camera Corps, in this IPTV feature video

Find out more about the 2011 Iowa 4-H Camera Corps program

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