Cafe culture at DU

This story began as a profile of Bean Tree Coffee, a new café in the DU community, which opened its doors on University Blvd. the first week of February this year. However, when I approached the manager, John Suh, to interview him on his business, he informed me that this would be the third interview he will have done for a student. Obviously, my story was old news.

I took a new spin on the old idea and decided to open it up to café and coffee culture at DU in general. I did this by interviewing students on why they went to cafes, what they liked in a good café, what were some of their favorites nearby, etc. I also asked them about their taste in coffee, naturally.

In the end, I wanted to know: Why are cafes so popular on college campuses? Is coffee culture becoming more sophisticated, or at least prevalent in America? Why do people love coffee so much? I used DU as a microcosm of society to answer these questions. I hope they came through in my interviews and photographs.

One Response to Cafe culture at DU

  • Brenda Velasquez
    Brenda Velasquez says:

    Emily, this slideshow is so intriguing! First off, the introduction really hooked me with its starting buzzing noise, the sound of pouring coffee and the ambient noises.
    You captured great variety in your shots! You shot photos from an overhead perspective or from a slanted view (like the first coffee cup). You took photos of people in their homes, or on a ski trip, or even study abroad photos!
    The inclusion of your voice in the interviews actually added a conversational appeal to your presentation, which is highly appropriate considering your topic: cafes, and the fact that people gather at cafes not only to enjoy coffee but to converse (as you demonstrated in your interview with the non-coffee drinker). And so, your movement away from convention worked very well.
    Also,you employed several new techniques: your presentation is composed of both color and black-and-white photos; you pay close attention to the framing of your subjects; you capture a lot of emotion in your subjects (sometimes romantic, sometimes relaxed, or joyful.)through composition; and you made text more interesting by spelling each word one letter at a time, making the presentation more energized.
    I loved the voice of the first man you interviewed, the enthusiast; his tempo is so fast, you can tell he’s on caffeine and your photos are correspondingly fast-paced to keep up with him!This pace also keeps the audience more alert to catch everything he’s saying.
    Lastly, you addressed a central idea revolving around coffee-mainly that getting a cup of coffee has become more than just a method of staying awake through the busy day; it’s a practice where friends and family gather together to talk and spend time together. This type of cultural analysis gave much depth to your story.
    Wonderful job.

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