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College Photographer of the Year

In September of 2020 I started as CPOY's Social Media coordinator. In this position I worked to find and create a consistent visual presentation on the competition's various platforms. I used knowledge I had gained from past research into social media strategies as well as from my experience working on the Social Media and Outreach desk for the Columbia Missourian to create a consistent grid presentation and establish a brand voice. This process was a trial and error period in that before my appointment winning images weren't posted and the social platforms weren't utilized to their fullest. I started adding white backgrounds to the winning images that were posted to differentiate them from the behind the scenes and infographic posts.

The following year I started a new position as a Coordinator, actually running the competition. I stayed in contact with Madi Winfield and Liv Paggiarino, who took over as Social Media Coordinators, and with Kate Trabalka in 2022 to continue developing guidelines and how the competition could utilize different features on social media, mainly Instagram. Through these years we started upping engagement through Instagram stories, using Reels and adding more images from the weirdos that work behind the scenes.
Pictures of the Year

In January 2021 I started working as Social Media Coordinator for Pictures of the Year. Unlike with CPOY, there was already an established image of how media was presented on the different platforms. I looked through past years at what was done and developed some changes to better present the images recognized in the competition. I switched image backgrounds from white to black, created grids to introduce judges and changed the social award template. In addition to this I worked on creating a way to handle conflict in respectful and transparent statements when it was unavoidable.

As with CPOY I became a coordinator for the competition but stayed involved in the development of social media. I communicated with Kate Trabalka and later Olivia Holler on changes and ways that the POY social accounts could improve. While there were small changes through both of their times as Social Media Coordinator, the biggest one was an addressing and conscious change when presenting and posting awards to not use congratulatory language on sensitive and hard news images and stories. In 2024 I continued as a consultant for the POY social media account and worked with Bailey Stover on developing new templates for the Instagram and discussing ethics and how to reduce harm when presenting images with sensitive content.
Wall Street Journal

I worked with Naomi Klinge, Jordan Meier and Zhuoxiu Xing in 2020 for the Wall Street Journal Audience and Development Team on researching and developing social media strategies for journalists. The research targeted a Gen Z and young Millennial audience and looked at the success of various social media influencers to create a guide for ways journalists could utilize social media to spread information.
Social Media
Social Media

Elizabeth Underwood | Photographer & Editor

Elizabeth Underwood is a photographer and editor in Buffalo, WY. Her work focuses on the intersection of sports and community. She is available for assignment.
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