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2016 PPP NemethStudent Spotlight

Major: Photography
Class Year: 2016
Hometown: Allison Park, Pa.
High School: North Allegheny High School
Campus Activities: National Press Photography Association

Expanding Horizons

Senior photography major Matt Nemeth, '16 defines himself as a visual learner. He is interested in the different ways communication can happen through images rather than words and how he will influence those communications as a professional photographer after graduation.

"When I started at Point Park, the common dream was to work at National Geographic and travel the world, but I realize that's not realistic at all. There is a popular, romanticized version of what a National Geographic photographer is - always traveling to exotic places, exploring beautiful forgotten landscapes, documenting violent revolutions or rare creatures. The reality is that some people do that sort of thing, but typically only a very select few. The industry is unforgivingly competitive and I've come to learn that it's not wise to put all your eggs into one basket. The lifestyle associated with that type of work is also not easy. They are constantly working, oftentimes far away from their families. I can be a real workaholic when it comes to my photography, but it takes a certain kind of person to spend long periods of time away from the world and the people they know."

Nowadays, Matt has redirected his approach to job searching. After graduation, Matt would like to work for a small magazine, newspaper or online publication where he would be able to cover environmental stories. "I recently landed a summer internship working for the web department at 90.5 WESA and I am looking forward to all of the opportunities that will come from that. I have an interest in history and the environment and I think there is plenty of material regarding those subjects in the Pittsburgh area. If the opportunity presents itself, I would never rule out traveling to a foreign place to photograph a story or freelancing for National Geographic and other great magazines. That is still something I would love to do in the future, it is just no longer my lone goal. Perhaps, I have expanded my horizons."

Taking The Fix to the Airwaves

Matt's interest in communication is not restricted to the lens of his camera. In 2015, he created and launched a weekly photography podcast called The Fix, that features a number of recurring co-hosts and covers a range of topics around photography. Matt originally came up with the concept for the show to help build interest in The Fix Magazine, which releases issues of its online publication quarterly.

"I thought if we had something steady and we were creating new content on a regular basis, we could hook people, bring them back and have them remember The Fix."

Listeners can expect to hear anything related to photography during the hour-long discussions, along with a segment at the beginning of each show that highlights photography related to current events and news. Matt works hard to bring different voices to the show and the audience. "I have had Point Park professors on the show, including Matt Adams, former Point Park photography professor and now assistant photo editor at National Geographic.

With the multitude of podcasts, news sources and media sites out there, Matt recognizes that there is a lot of competition for people's attention. He believes that the best way to keep people listening to the show is to generate a lot of interesting and unique content. The podcast has definitely helped to build interest in The Fix Magazine as well.

Looking Back to Learn

Matt's interest in history started in elementary school and has been growing ever since.

"Today, people take that sort of knowledge for granted because information is so readily available everywhere. It's not like the world began when you were born. There's a history to everything and I like learning about the things that have happened before."

Matt is most interested in the ancient history of civilizations and peoples. For Matt, the less that is known, the better, since the mystery and the hidden story are what grab his attention and move him to learn more.

More About: School of Communication, North Allegheny Senior High School