Returning artist shares photojournalism stories

Alona Jenkins, Guest Writer

When people hear gunshots, their first reaction is to run in fear of their life. But for Wiley Price, award-winning photographer, a gunshot is just another great opportunity for a photo.

“I’m trying to figure out out who is shooting, so I can get a picture of this guy,” said Price.

Price came back to U. City on Feb. 22 as a participant of the Returning Artists Program sponsored by the University City Municipal Commission on Arts and Letters. He is a 1975 graduate who moved to U. City from a less fortunate neighborhood when he was in fourth grade. The move was a huge moment in his life, and he now takes much pride in his U City roots.

“It changed the entire pathway of my life, literally,” said Price.

Price now works for the St. Louis American Newspaper, a black newspaper based in the city of St. Louis. He shoots many different events that others may find frightening, such as protests, fires, and shootings. Although for Price, dangerous situations are the norm.

“Everyday I go to work, my life could be in danger and it probably is,” said Price.
In order to keep his personal safety, Price makes sure to stay conscious when he walks into a shoot.

“You stay awake [and] analyze the situation,” said Price.

Along with the danger of his job, Price shared his knowledge on the practical elements of photography with the students. He spoke on how to capture emotion in photos and shoot different events.

“School teaches you how to take a picture, but not everything else; you’re on your own,” said Price.

As a Returning Artist Program participant, Price saw the value in motivating the students and future artists.

“I try to be inspirational because I know my culture, and we need as many role models as we can get,” said Price.