People of Whitewater: Craig Schreiner

Alena Purpero, Lifestyle Editor

When it comes to the work of photographer Craig Schreiner, words can’t express the sense of community and passion in his work.

Schreiner, University of Wisconsin-Whitewater photographer, exerts his talent and passion to create photos so students can later revisit cherished memories.

“I never envisioned myself working for a university. I have a journalism background. I worked for a few newspapers,” Schreiner said. “I heard about this job from a friend of mine that I worked at the newspaper with, she said that this job was opening up and that I should check into it so I did.”

Aside from his job at UW-Whitewater, Schreiner helps aspiring photographers advance their skills by teaching a photojournalism class at Madison Area Technical College.

Schreiner in the Marketing and Media Relations department at UW-W. His desire to capture authentic moments between students and other members of the Whitewater community stems from his interest in history, discovered early on in high school.

“I got attracted to the storytelling power of photography early on … I was interested in current events, I was interested in history,” Schreiner said. “The picture can be a powerful thing.”

Monumental photos in history inspired Schreiner to pursue photography. “Historical moments like the civil rights movement, Vietnam War, 9/11 and other big historic events, those were big pictures to be made and some of them really affected the course of events and I was really impressed by that” Schreiner said.

Schreiner uses his talent to take a narrative form of genuine art.

“When you look at a lot of publications from universities, you see people pretending to do stuff. That’s not really the way we work here and I’m thankful for that,” Schreiner said.

The process of capturing students’ achievements and liveliness is his goal.

“Some things I just enjoy because they are personally rewarding to do,” Schreiner said. “I don’t see myself as a good portrait photographer, but I love the vibe and energy of the students getting their photo taken for being hired before graduation.”

The energy Schreiner puts into his ambition to document student’s triumph stems from
his family.

“I’ve been married for more than 30 years and have three sons,” Schreiner said. “I see my sons in the faces of students here.”

Originally from Northern Illinois, Schreiner’s wife brought him to Wisconsin.

“She was still in school at Madison getting her education degree. We dated for two years and decide to get married and I had the flexibility to move so I came to Wisconsin and we got married in 1985.”

Schreiner’s key motivation to bring out his best work through his job is his respect for UW-Whitewater.

“Through my photography I try to do justice to the creativity, the caring, the work that goes on here at UW-Whitewater by all of the students, staff and faculty everyday” Schreiner said.

His ambition to portray student triumphs and the positive energy he sees on the campus of UW-Whitewater fuels his passion for
his work. smaller