Julia Hopkins '19
Studio Art major Julia Hopkins ’19 cites her love of telling visual stories, and how photography allows her to engage with the world and connect to people, as her inspirations. Professor Karl Baden characterizes her as “the hardest working woman in the photography biz here at BC,” and Julia’s resume attests to her energy and passion for her vocation.
Julia came to BC intending to study STEM subjects, but after joining The Heights as a staff photographer during her first semester soon rose to become Head Photography Editor for the BC newspaper, a position she held for over two years.
With her interest in photography kindled, Julia took her first photography class at BC the spring semester of her freshman year – Photography 1 with Professor Baden. Julia credits Professor Baden with changing how she thought about photography – as an art form rather than simply a visual document – and with encouraging his students to study the history of photography as a means of informing their own work. In this and subsequent classes with both Professor Baden and Professor Greer Muldowney, Julia learned and improved her photography-related skills.
Julia acknowledges the personal nature of the Art Department’s Studio Art program as a major factor in her development as a photographer, artist, and person. “The intimacy of the program allows you to find long-lasting friends and mentors in the insanely talented teachers. It allows you to be surrounded by people that care about who you are and where you are going and believe in you to keep going. It immerses you in an environment where you have the chance to learn from some of the top professionals in Boston and the world.”
Both Professor Baden and Professor Muldowney have become mentors to Julia. She recounts how Professor Baden has been “a constant force in encouraging me to keep taking courses and taking photographs and has supported me as a person as well through this whole journey academically and emotionally in choosing to become a photographer.” On his part, Professor Baden lauds Julia’s “energy, enthusiasm and generous nature,” observing “she seems to live and breathe the medium.” He praises her “sharp eye and sharp mind -- two of the essential qualities of being a good photographer” as well as her strong will and determination.
Julia describes how Professor Muldowney “brought the prospect of entering the art world down to earth from the nebulous and intangible shelf it was previously on in my mind” by encouraging her students to visit local galleries, go to artist talks, volunteer at events, and even to submit work to juried shows, “open[ing] our minds to the practicality of the aspiration to have our own work exhibited someday.” Professor Muldowney notes that Julia “is interested in both art and documentary photography and her practice engages in social and personal issues quite seamlessly.” She characterizes Julia as a “good citizen” in our department, extolling her willingness to help others on their large-scale projects and working in the darkroom.
Julia’s work as a photographer extends beyond our department to the BC community and beyond. She has photographed freelance for numerous campus clubs and media outlets, as well as BC publications such as the Boston College Chronicle and Boston College Magazine. Over the past two summers, she interned at Boston Magazine and the as the head photographer for the Chatham Anglers, a Cape Cod Baseball League team (see photo above left).
Check out more of Julia’s work on her Instagram page.