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Junior Anthony Lupi is pur­suing a career in pho­tog­raphy.
Courtesy | Anthony Lupi

Feet shuffle, fans roar, and a man in Hillsdale blue-and-white leaps for an impressive dunk — Hillsdale is up two points, and the crowd goes wild. In the excited uproar, everyone missed a small ‘click’ from under the basket. 

Junior Anthony Lupi says the moment was “the most surreal feeling.” As a pho­tog­rapher for the sports and mar­keting depart­ments, he could not have been in a better place at a better time. He checks his camera roll, and there it is. His perfect shot cap­tured the perfect shot. 

At this time last year Lupi would not have told you that he was going to be a usual sight on the side­lines of any sports game or large school event, camera in hand. He hadn’t yet dis­covered pho­tog­raphy, which he now describes as one of the few things he’s most pas­sionate about. 

He first began pho­tog­raphy last Feb­ruary, bor­rowing a camera from a friend and fellow Alpha Tau Omega brother while in Tempi, Arizona. 

“It was just a hobby that I was sort of inter­ested in, and I ended up buying that camera from him,” Lupi said. 

The hobby had grown into a passion by the time he arrived back on campus in the fall, and he sought out more oppor­tu­nities to practice his new talent. He started shooting games for the Hillsdale men’s soccer team, which is largely made up of his ATO brothers. He also did practice pho­to­shoots with friends for fun. When he heard the mar­keting department had an opening for a pho­tog­rapher, he seized the oppor­tunity to get a job in his new­found area of interest. 

Fast forward to spring 2021 and he’s making his talent prof­itable by working for both the mar­keting and sports depart­ments, shooting events from bas­ketball games to a forum with former Sec­retary of Edu­cation Betsy DeVos.

He’s now even exploring the pos­si­bility of intern­ships and a career, which he largely credits to his friend junior Stephen Edelblut, who encouraged him to con­sider his new­found interest as a profession.

 “He made me under­stand that it’s actually a viable career path,” Lupi said. 

Edelblut describes his friend as someone who excels when he has a purpose, and who goes all out once he sets his mind to something. 

“I knew that if he had a target to run at, he would do a really good job, and obvi­ously he has because he’s killing it right now,” says Edelblut. 

Lupi’s mar­keting boss Andrea Weir also sees his passion for pho­tog­raphy, saying he is always excited to take on events, pri­or­i­tizing his avail­ability to the mar­keting office. 

“He usually just says yes, and then asks me what it is,” said Weir, laughing. 

Lupi is busy jug­gling a Hillsdale homework load, a political economy major, man­aging ATO’s public rela­tions, and leading the ATO Bible Study. Bal­ancing all these duties is hard, he says, but still fea­sible because he finds meaning in what he does. 

“Every­thing that I do is very ful­filling.” he says, “I think that’s the most important part of it.”

For Lupi, who is not oth­erwise par­tic­u­larly artistic, pho­tog­raphy is a cre­ative outlet that ener­gizes him and actually helps him recharge from other activ­ities. While he enjoys taking pic­tures on the job, he also loves to take photos for friends and gen­erally doing it for fun. 

Finding ful­fillment in his work is what keeps him going, but he also thinks it’s very important to make time to just be with friends, and says exercise and good sleep are key to main­taining equilibrium. 

Will any­thing come out of this hobby-turned-student-job? Maybe, Lupi says. 

Lupi says he’s been in contact with several alumni who have helped him scope out a variety of intern­ships and posi­tions in sports pho­tog­raphy. He’s seri­ously con­sid­ering applying to pho­to­graph NFL training camps this summer, and has been in contact with alumna MaryKate Drews, who takes photos  for many major sports teams in Chicago, including the Chicago Bears.

Lupi says his con­tin­u­ation of this pursuit is simple.

 “I love doing sports pho­tog­raphy. It’s one of the very few things I would say that I’m pas­sionate about.”