Photospread

Behind Her Lens

Bailey Coombes ’22 received her first camera at age 7. Now a marketing major at Texas A&M, she is working toward becoming a Geographic photographer.

    Written by Clare Fusselman ’21
  • Oct. 1, 2020
    2 min read

To Bailey Coombes ’22, photography is more than a hobby. It’s about seeing the world through different lenses—literally. 

Hailing from the small town of Medina, Texas, Coombes credits her ambition and strong desire to learn to the close-knit community that raised her. Her high school’s small size allowed her to be heavily involved in many activities, such as serving as its yearbook photographer and president of the National Honor Society before graduating as valedictorian. Coombes’ list of accomplishments did not stop there. Now a sophomore at Texas A&M University, she is an Endowed Opportunity Award scholar. “This scholarship, along with other opportunities being an Aggie has presented me, proves I made the right choice in attending Texas A&M,” Coombes said.

Coombes was gifted her first camera at age 7 and hasn’t put it down since. Despite an early and instant love of photography, she always felt there was more to the craft to explore. During a 2015 medical mission trip to Belize, Coombes was exposed to the idea of using photography to tell untold stories.

“After my trip to Belize, I was inspired to use a camera so that people can see the world from a different perspective,” Coombes explained. “For me, photography is now an outlet to make a difference and bring overlooked issues of our world, such as climate change and poverty, to light in a very real way.”

As a marketing major minoring in art, Coombes hopes to apply the skills she learns from her degree to her future as a photographer. In addition to being a dedicated student, she takes every opportunity to enhance her portfolio and make an impact on the campus community. Coombes serves as the public relations executive for Cali, a women’s leadership organization, and works as a social media student worker at the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum.

“Though it can be difficult balancing school, work and organizations, my passion for photography and design make it all worth it,” she added.

Upon graduating, Coombes plans to pursue a career that combines her passion for photography with her skills in graphic design to eventually achieve her dream job as a photographer with National Geographic. “My Belize mission trip was a preview of what I was meant to do with my future,” Coombes concluded. “I want a future telling impactful stories with my camera.” 

Make a Difference: Scholarships help Aggies achieve their dreams. You can create a scholarship for aspiring students using a five-year pledge or company matching programs. To learn more, contact Marcy Ullmann ’86 at mullmann@txamfoundation.com or (979) 845-6383.

Check out some of Bailey's photos from Belize:

You can see the rest of Bailey Coombes' work at missbphotography.myportfolio.com.