Being a professional photographer may seem like the ideal career option if you love taking pictures, but what opportunities are out there and how much are you like to earn? Here is a quick guide to help you decide if it is really the right job for you.
To succeed you will need a mixture of both creative and technical skills. Social skills are also important, as you are likely to have to work with a wide range of different people, and you will need to be able to communicate effectively to get the results you want.
Photography is not just about snapping pictures. You will need to accomplish a whole range of other tasks, from using lighting equipment and scoping out good locations to preparing studios and editing pictures for publication.
Types of Photography Careers
The available options are endless. You could choose to go into journalism or go down a corporate or commercial route. You could decide to become a wedding photographer in Hampshire (or anywhere else in the world) or opt to specialise in portrait, documentary or fashion work.
What Can You Earn?
Most photographers are freelancers, and so salaries vary hugely depending the project size and the photographer’s level of skills. On average, you could expect to earn between around £100 to £150 a day in a photographic assistant role or £50,000 plus if you become a successful full-time photographer. Hit the higher echelons of celebrity, portrait or fashion, and the financial rewards could be much, much higher.
Whilst not strictly necessary, qualifications can give you the broad range of skills needed to forge a successful career. They can also set you apart from the competition if you decide to go for a staff job. If you applied for a position at Lemon Tree Hampshire Wedding Photographer, for example, and were being compared to a candidate with an equally impressive portfolio and level of experience, qualifications could help you secure the job. There is a wide range of courses on offer, both part-time and full-time, including BTEC HNDs, City & Guilds certificates and degrees.
Sources of Information
The British Institute of Professional Photography (BIPP) offers its own highly respected Professional Qualifying Examination (PQE) and also runs a mentoring system for new photographers. Find more information on the BIPP website at bipp.com. If you are considering a career in journalism, you may need a qualification from the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ). The available training choices can be found on its website at nctj.com.
Is It the Career for You?
The photographic industry can provide a massive range of career options and can be a great choice for people with a passion for taking photographs. It is important to remember, however, that it can be far from a glamorous profession. Even the highest-paid professionals can spend hours waiting for their subject to arrive (not getting paid while they wait) or handling media scrums that would make heavyweight boxers think twice before getting stuck in.