Last updateFri, 19 Jun 2020 7pm


Looking Through the Other Side of the Lens

Meet Jim Reme and Blaze Nowara, the University Photographers

Other SideDeep in the basement of Wilson Hall is the University’s “best kept secret on campus”…the Copy Center. But buried within the Copy Center, hidden in their kitchen area, is the University’s dedicated Photography Department. Jim Reme, the University Photographer, has been taking pictures on campus for 17 years, but his passion for photography started a long time before that.

“My father was a photographer,” said Reme, “So I’ve been doing photography since I was about eight-years-old.” The Belmar native attended Fairfield University as a marketing major. “I didn’t need to take a course in photography,” said Reme, “I knew most of what I’d learn.”

Before working at Monmouth, Reme used to own a photography studio in Spring Lake, worked as a photographer for the Asbury Park Press, and was a photographer for the NFL for 23 seasons. In 1994, when Reme began working at Monmouth, he was still doing photography on Sundays for the NFL. Luckily for him, the crazy schedule of photographing Monmouth football on Saturdays and then the NFL on Sundays helped prepare him for the packed schedule he usually has while on campus.

The Photography Department is responsible for pictures in University promotional literature and publications, news releases, web pages and any other printed material. While Reme might be a talented and dedicated photographer to the University, he is certainly no Houdini. With the help of Blaze Nowara, Assistant Photographer, Reme is able to capture every “photography requested” event on campus.

“The fall is very difficult,” said Nowara, a graduate of James Madison University. “There are a lot of athletics on the weekends and events. When the academic events coincide with the athletic events it gets very busy.” On a particularly long day for Reme, his day on campus begins at 6:30 am and he anticipates on leaving campus around 10:00 pm.

“This morning we were doing head shots,” said Reme. “Tonight we’re shooting some stuff in the Hawk TV studio, an event over in the MAC, and then we’re doing something really kind of different tonight. We’re shooting a group picture of all the athletes for the athletic department.” While Reme will be safe on the ground, Nowara will have the pleasure of boarding a cherry picker to photograph the over 490 student athletes on the soccer field.

Nowara, who has been working for the Photography Department for three years, is not only the Assistant Photographer, but a student in the University’s Corporate and Public Communications Graduate Program. Currently, Nowara is creating a short film for the graduate programs capstone project about Alternatives to Violence, a non-profit organization. The organization, which Nowara has been volunteering at for over a year, works to reduce levels of violence found in our society by introducing people to peaceful ways of resolving conflicts.

Nowara is also currently working on a website that documents his eight-day trip with his sister to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa. allows adventure enthusiasts to check out pictures and videos of his trip, reflect on their own past adventures climbing and “prepare for the big trip.”

Between the sports games, concerts at the MAC, and cherry pickers, it seems like it would be hard for Reme and Nowara to pick what their favorite part of the job is, but the answer comes easy to both of them. “I like the diversity of the job,” said Nowara, “The work is always different every day. I really enjoy shooting concerts at the MAC. I think I like Alice In Chains the best… the energy of the crowd, the colors, the lights, the band.”

“We both fought over the Backstreet Boys,” added Nowara, “but Jim won that one.” Reme reflected back on some of his favorite events that he shot on campus. “I photographed this guy named Chris Rock that did a performance here, and then the year after that he was on Saturday Night Live,” said Reme. “Governor Christie has been here a couple times, so I have photographed him and then you think like, ‘holy cow he could be President,” said Reme, laughing.

Reme got a little something more out of the University than just cool photo opportunities. “I met my wife here,” said Reme, “I just got married like three weeks ago.” Reme had known his now wife, Jamie Mitchell, Adjunct English professor, for years while working at the University. “She’s really terrific,” Reme adds in, “You should take her course.”

So the next time you see Reme or Nowara with their cameras around campus, be sure to flash them a big smile.

PHOTO COURTESY of Monmouth University Photography

Contact Information

The Outlook
Jules L. Plangere Jr. Center for Communication
and Instructional Technology (CCIT)
Room 260, 2nd floor

The Outlook
Monmouth University
400 Cedar Ave, West Long Branch, New Jersey

Phone: (732) 571-3481 | Fax: (732) 263-5151