100 Days of Russia-Ukraine War

In the first few months of the war photo editors edited daily galleries of the Russia-Ukraine War. Assistant director of photography Nicole Gutierrez and I went through hundreds of past photos of the war from the Associated Press and edited photos into a longform web presentation aimed at capturing the impact of the war in Ukraine. We aimed to include the most newsworthy moments, the new daily life in Ukraine, and the varying impacts of the war.

Photo editing and web design by Michelle Gutierrez and Nicole Gutierrez.
Page design by Heeral Patel.
Photos and story by the Associated Press.

LINK: This story was published in the Columbia Missourian in June 2022.

From Fierce Rivalry to Friendship

The two schools of Norborne and Hardin-Central used to be fierce rivals in football. This created a wedge between the communities. Football united the respective towns against one another but it was also what ultimately led to the friendship between the towns.  
I managed and edited this collaborative project with Nicole Gutierrez originally starting with an idea for a micro-doc and then evolving into a two-month-long multimedia package. The story highlighted two small towns and how a small 8-man football team brought the two communities together. It showed that a sport can be a unifier on any scale and the difference it can make to a community. 
I used organizational and time management skills when scheduling visual journalists on their trips to the towns and when bringing in new team members as we decided to add different elements such as drone footage and graphics. Additionally, I advised them throughout the process, edited and toned the final photos, and collaborated with the designer.  

Micro-doc produced and edited by Paola Rodriguez and Tom Kavanaugh.
Photo editing by Michelle Gutierrez, Nicole Gutierrez, and Margo Wagner (Assistant Director of Photography).
Photography by Zach Linhares, Ciara McCaskill, Kayln Laire, and Bradford Siwak.
Videography by Zach Linhares, Hunter Pendleton, and Bradford Siwak.
Reporting by Emma Eaton. 
Graphics by Ben Scott, Ben Miglore, Shannon Belt and Khue Nyguen. 
Page design by Sara Marquardt.

           Missouri Press Association: Multimedia Reporting First Place Award 

Homelessness Coverage    

The Columbia Missourian created a homelessness beat to cover an important issue in the community. I helped kickstart the photo side of the coverage by bringing on photographers and other photo editors to the beat, coordinating photographers, and producing visual-focused projects. The stories and photos that have come out of this beat have and will make a lasting impact on those who experience homelessness and the community as a whole. My contribution to this beat paved the way for future visual-centered projects and coverage of homelessness. Below are stories I produced for the beat.
   As the leaves fall: Sharon Crain faces homelessness...

As the leaves fall: Sharon Crain faces homelessness with perseverance, community support

This was a long-term photo story that shows the daily life and point of view of someone experiencing homelessness in Columbia, Mo. Fellow photo editors, the photographer, and I had long discussions about whether the subject was mentally well enough to consent to being photographed and why this was an important story to tell. The homeless community is often misunderstood and overlooked and this story informs readers of the type of challenges the community faces and reminds people of the people behind the issue.

Produced by Michelle Gutierrez, Nicole Gutierrez and Irynka Hromotska.
Edited by Margo Wagner.
Photos and story by Zach Linhares.

LINK: This story was published in the Columbia Missourian in Dec. 2021.
   Operation Safe Winter provides winter clothing for...

Operation Safe Winter provides winter clothing for homeless population

This was a daily story covering an event that provides donations to people experiencing homelessness. I assigned two photographers on the beat to photograph the event and make connections and contacts.

Produced by Michelle Gutierrez and Nicole Gutierrez.
Edited by Irynka Hromotska.
Photos by Owen Ziliak and Zach Linhares.
Story by Mae Bruce.

LINK: This story was published in the Columbia Missourian in Nov. 2021.

Friday Night Sights

 Friday Night Sights is a visual series covering high school football in Mid-Missouri. It focuses on the atmosphere; the fans, the volunteers, the players on the sidelines, the relationships, and the excitement, disappointment, suspense, and thrill of the game off the field.

I worked with 55 volunteer photojournalists and assigned between nine and 11 of them to up to five football games each week. I worked with inexperienced photographers and edited several of them each night ending with a final edit for the night overall. Throughout the semester I was able to guide the volunteers and watch them grow as photographers.

I led this series with Nicole Gutierrez and worked with photo editors Paola Rodriguez, Tom Kavanaugh, and Hudson Heidger under the direction of Assistant Director of Photography Margo Wagner.

LINK: View the recap of this coverage at the Columbia Missourian

Page designs by Sara Marquardt and Shulei Jiang.

Michelle Gutierrez

Michelle Gutierrez is a visual journalist primarily working as a photo editor.
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