Southern Japan is a long way from his hometown of Hoquiam, Washington, but Adam McCambridge couldn’t be any happier with where he is. The Digital Cinematography student is an audio/video production assistant at the United States Marine Corps Air Station in Iwakuni. He’s a civilian employed by the Marine Corps Community Services (MCCS), but prior to that he was an active-duty Marine stationed on the same base.
“[As a civilian] I began interning at the marketing office on the base,” says Adam, who’s been interested in Japanese culture since his family hosted a foreign exchange student when he was younger. He joined the Marines after high school and jumped at the opportunity to be stationed in Japan. “One day the Marketing Manager mentioned to me that there was a position opening up in the video department. I gave it a try and I fell in love with video production and editing. It took my interest in photography to the next level.”
It was this growing interest in photography and video production that inspired Adam to enroll in Full Sail’s online Digital Cinematography program. Today, he juggles his coursework with his daily job duties, which include updating the base’s local narrowcast network and creating promotional spots for events and services around the station. He spends some time in front of the camera too, as the host of Ikimasho (Japanese for “let’s go”), a small travel show that airs on base and showcases local attractions and activities.
Some of Adam’s photography was also recently discovered by Japanese television show Nani Kore Chin Hyakkei, a variety program that highlights unique and interesting things that people find around Japan. (Adam compares it a little bit to America’s Funniest Home Videos.) He’s working with producers now to have a couple of his shots air on the show.
“I just recently went out with the TV crew to shoot the segments,” says Adam. “One of the shots is a Japanese Sakura tree that has bamboo growing out of its trunk, and the other is a rock that looks like a rice ball that is teetering off the edge of a cliff. The director told me that the first segment should be airing on the show soon.”
Adam’s plan is to continue to work on the base and finish up school, and while he’s open to other adventures and opportunities in the future, he’s content for now in Japan.
“I fell in love with the culture and the country,” says Adam. “Everything about Japan appeals to me, from the people and the customs to the food and the art. It’s been 10 years and I still haven’t seen and done everything I want to see.”