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Introducing Gillian Rea: Photojournalist, Branding Strategist, and Wedding Photographer

If we haven't met yet, my name is Gillian Rea (pronounced like Jillian Ray)... First of all, welcome to the BLOG. Let's jump right in!

My Background as a Creative

In my younger years, I was playing around with all kinds of mediums, from playdough and crayons, to real pottery clay and acrylics. When I wasn't practicing drawing flowers and faces, I was in every choir, ensemble, and musical theater you can think of! It wasn't until high school that I became obsessed with my friends' camera gear and editing software. By my junior year, I applied to become a photojournalist for my high school's competing online newspaper, The Feather Online. Our team trained like the pro's, and were expected to preform like professionals as well. We traveled the country, winning awards and making memories. My teachers, Kori Friesen (now Kori James) and Greg Stobbe invested their industry knowledge, time, and full support in me, and completely changed the course of my future from those two years!

Work and School Experience

After graduating from Fresno Christian, I moved to Arizona to pursue my bachelors at Grand Canyon University. By the end of my Freshman year, I accepted my 'dream job': I became one of four Creative Photographers for the GCU Marketing Department. My team and I were responsible for capturing every event on and off campus that was "GCU" related... Everything from basketball games (including some Suns games in the Talking Stick Arena), to every concert in the GCU arena that were open to the public, to product shots for the on-campus coffee shop and pizza company, and everything in between! The exposure and experience I earned from three years of this job were priceless...and the custom All Access Passes didn't hurt either...

Photo published by Taco Bell. Photo by Gillian Rea

While making connections as a photographer here, I was able to shoot for brands like Taco Bell, USTA, Little Taller Advertising Agency, Air1 Positive Hits, Phoenix Union, Habitat for Humanity, GCU, GCE, People's Church, Pelican's Snoballs, Chosen Yogurt, and many others. My work has been published by these accounts, and printed by most, which is a highlight in my career so far!

Lopes Way "Graduation" ceremony put on by Class of 2020. Photo by Gillian Rea

If by now you're thinking I went to school to study photography, think again... In the Spring of 2020, in the height of the COVID-19 outbreak, I graduated with a bachelors in Advertising and Public Relations with an Emphasis in Graphic Design, and a Minor in Communication. And I absolutely made my degree into a woven blanket.

Since spring of 2020, I worked as a medical courier, meaning I traveled across the Central Valley every day (most days started at 5am) and delivered random things, from eyeballs on ice, to blood samples, to important documents! I got to drive a large van, which scratched my itch of wanting to become a truck driver for awhile, but you never know what the future holds!

Today, in addition to my photo and design jobs, I work remotely as a Publishing Coordinator for an online publishing company. Our clients are well-known and high status, so I can't give out too much information, but I love that this jobs gives me the flexibility to travel and give full attention to my wedding and advertising photography career!

Let's Stay Connected

Now that you know my life story (or at least the career side), let's be friends! I'd love to learn about you, too. Come say hi on whichever of these platforms you use most:

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