Leopard Look: Amelia Flinchbaugh


Andrew Hager

Senior Amelia Flinchbaugh was recognized as Jostens Photo Contest 2021 winner for outstanding photography. She serves as co-editor-in-chief on the 2021 Leopard yearbook.

Amelia Flinchbaugh was introduced to photography from a young age and won a top placement in the Jostens Photo Contest.

At A Glance: 

Favorite song: “If I Died” by Alex Boniello

Favorite Photographer: Harry Holland

Favorite Movie: “The Last Mimzy”

Dig A Little Deeper:

The Red Ledger: How long have you been interested in photography?

Amelia Flinchbaugh: I don’t think there was ever a time I really started to be interested in photography. I always enjoyed taking pictures on my phone, and occasionally on my mom’s Canon Rebel T2I DSLR, but it wasn’t until I joined the yearbook in seventh grade that I really learned and got into it.

TRL: How were you introduced to photography?

AF: I have a lot of journalism and photography ties in my family, as well as a lot of artistic people, so photography was always something I knew about and was around. Yearbook really got me into being behind the camera and enjoying capturing a single moment. I never took a photography class or anything so all I know is either from a yearbook or self taught.

TRL: Who are some people who have inspired you?

AF: I think my biggest inspiration is my uncle who is really big into photography, but I also had someone on my mom’s side of the family who shot for National Geographic. I also really just enjoy seeing other pictures from the photographers at Lovejoy, and in other yearbooks as inspiration for when I go out and shoot.

TRL: How were you introduced to Jostens Photo Contest?

AF: I heard about the photo contest in middle school during the yearbook since Jostens is our publisher. I never submitted anything back then but always thought about it. Mrs. Pollard [yearbook adviser] shared the information with the yearbook staff again my sophomore year, but I still wasn’t too confident in my photography to submit it. It wasn’t until last year, my junior year, that I really felt good about submitting my work for the contest. I didn’t win anything, but it was really fun. I decided to do it again this year and ended up getting an honorable mention.

TRL: What inspired your photo for the contest?

AF: I didn’t have any direct inspiration for my photo I submitted in the contest. I was just hanging out with my sister late at night at the school, and thought I should take some photos. I needed a photo event for a social media grade in the yearbook. It was really cool how she made a lantern out of her phone, and a seltzer bottle, so I snapped a couple photos with Night Sight on my Google Pixel 3 phone.

TRL: If you could look back to your younger self and give her a piece of advice what would it be?

AF: If I could give my younger self advice, I would probably tell her to “go for it” and not worry so much about how other people will judge and receive it. I really regret not taking some opportunities I was given because I was too afraid of what might happen.

TRL: Do you hope to make a career out of photography?

AF: At the moment, I am not planning on making a career out of photography. I really love it, but I have more of a passion for design. I am going to Syracuse University, and I was admitted into Newhouse School of Public Communications for Graphic Design. Graphic design is part of the visual communications department with photography, so photography is kind of my back up if it doesn’t work out with design. I have definitely thought about doing photography as a career though and for sure plan on continuing with it as a hobby.

TRL: Where can we find more of your photos?

AF: I have a photography Instagram @flinchyphotos. I don’t post on it as much as I wish I did, but whenever I get some good shots I try to post them there.

TRL: Is there anything else you would like to share? 

AF: I really never expected to win anything in the photo contest because I only submitted one photo this year. Last year, I did months of picking out photos and getting model releases signed and submitted four photos that I had taken with a DSLR camera and did not receive any recognition. This year, I submitted a photo I had taken on my phone ,and submitted [it] last minute and was in disbelief when I received the email.