When Jacob Bucko was 15, he borrowed his grandfather’s DSLR camera. From that point, he knew he wanted to take photography seriously.
Now, the junior rower’s Instagram is dedicated to his photography, and his grandfather follows the account, too.
“I just started taking pictures on vacations and with friends,” Bucko, a communication studies major, said. “I realized that I enjoyed it, and people told me that my photos were good.”
His account is called “Chasing Apollo,” after the Greek god of the sun and truth.
“Photography is a lot about capturing light and chasing a story, and chasing that perfect image,” Bucko said. “So Apollo, being the Greek god of beauty, light, truth and everything supposedly good, kind of captured what I wanted to be chasing.”
Bucko began to explore videography while in high school and has a YouTube channel where he’s posted two videos of the men’s crew team.
He created a video of the team’s spring break training trip in South Carolina earlier this year. He took aerial footage with a drone belonging to sophomore rower Cayden Musso.
Bucko also takes footage of the team’s practices.
“We have a symbiotic relationship,” Coach Brian Perkins said. “He sends me all the footage he takes, which we use for coaching purposes, and when I take video, I give him all my roll of film to work with and sort of create something with.”
Scott Gratson, the director of the communication studies program, is a mentor to Bucko.
“I don’t think he gets how conceptual he can be,” Gratson said. “I don’t think he gives himself enough credit for being able to explore some very, very complex issues. And I’m glad that he’s becoming more open with his thoughts on those. I think he’s growing into concepts. And that’s wonderful for me to see as a teacher.”
Though Bucko can make money from his craft, he won’t consider it a career.
“I definitely don’t want to sell my life to a career of always finding the next job,” Bucko said.
He has been taking advertising classes and had an internship with Global Hospitality Services in London last summer.
Bucko pursues beauty in more than just a still image or digital production. As an aesthete, he wants to have a “beautiful life.”
“A beautiful life means having people you love around you and actively trying to do what you love, and actively trying to serve others,” Bucko said.