Student Spotlight: Senior Jared “Bobi” Knox related his photography to other artistic avenues

Jared “Bobi” Knox is a senior at University of Iowa studying photography. He discusses the several artistic outlets he is interested in, as well as what inspires his work. Knox also touches on his plans for the future regarding his photography.


Jared “Bobi” Knox shoots a picture near the railroad tracks of Iowa City on Saturday, Sept. 27, 2021.

Olivia Augustine, Arts Reporter

For most, photographs are a casual part of everyday life, but University of Iowa senior Jared “Bobi” Knox knows how a passion for photography can turn that into something truly special.

Knox said he always has a camera on him, ready to capture the next great memory or take the newest best shot.

The photography student has been taking photographs for five years and specializes in color, black and white images, and different types of film cameras.

Knox said he was first drawn to photography in high school when developing a friendship with his art teacher. At the time, he wanted to study nutrition science, but the interest didn’t last.

As a first-year, Knox declared a cinema major, and then, finally, switched to a photography major.

“I just really fell in love with still images, and just the power and the story they can convey, and I think I realized that my sophomore year of college,” Knox said.

Knox’s commitment to photography does not limit him to one artistic avenue. His interests extend to drawing and video work — short films especially. Knox also takes some graphic design classes, he said.

“I didn’t need some big production studio, or I didn’t need to move anywhere or have anything specific. All I needed was my camera and I could have an honest artistic voice,” Knox said. “I think once I understood that, I just really threw myself into photography.”

He said he compares shooting photography to film, focusing on what he thinks will make a good photo in the moment. Instead, he takes pictures based on the coloring and lighting.

Knox’s bedroom is covered in photographs. Some are his own, but many come from other photography and designs that inspire his own work. Knox said some things he finds especially inspiring in his work are fashion and music.

The layout and design of i-D magazine and Uniqlo are two of Knox’s favorite inspirations when it comes to fashion magazine design.

As a senior, Knox will soon graduate and enter the workforce. He said he’ll need a lot of experience for the types of careers he is most interested in, so he is setting his sights for 15 years out and focusing now on how he’s going to do to get there.

Eventually, Knox said he would be interested in working in the production of cartoons, possibly working with the writers to create the big picture. Officially, Knox would be a managing editor or an arts director.

Knox said his video work and photography work are similar, in that they both strive to represent people as who they are as human beings — not just who they are for the camera pointed at them.

“I would say my work is personal — it’s representative of both the way I see a person or a subject of any kind,” Knox said. “But it’s also somewhat a documentary in a way that subjects exist in a space that they occupy.”