CAREER TOPIC: PHOTOGRAPHY
Introduce students the career options of the art and design field.
Provided with multiple lectures, examples, study guides, guided practices and student resources, the students will be able to demonstrate an understanding of the art and design careers, by producing various portfolio based projects the demonstrate the skills and knowledge established by the Program Of Study, to a task completion rate of 80% or higher after 2 years in the program.
Program Of Study Requirements:
101 - Identify career paths within the vocational profession.
102- List occupational requirements.
103 - Demonstrate research and organizational skills.
009001 13.1.11 A. Relate careers to individual interests, abilities, and aptitudes.
009002 13.1.11 B. Analyze career options based on personal interests, abilities, aptitudes, achievements, and goals.
009003 13.1.11 C. Analyze how the changing roles of individuals in the workplace relate to new opportunities within career choices.
009024 13.3.11 D. Develop a personal budget based on career choice.
What Photographers Do
Photographers use their technical expertise, creativity, and composition skills to produce and preserve images that tell a story or record an event.
Duties of Photographers
- Photographers typically do the following:
- Market and advertise services to attract clients
- Analyze and plan the composition of photographs
- Use various photographic techniques and lighting equipment
- Capture subjects in commercial-quality photographs
- Enhance the subject's appearance with a natural or artificial light
- Use photo-enhancing software
- Maintain a digital portfolio to demonstrate their work
- Archive and manage imagery
Today, most photographers use digital cameras instead of the traditional film cameras. Digital cameras capture images electronically, so the photographer can edit the image on a computer. Images can be stored on portable memory devices, such as compact disks, memory cards, and flash drives. Once the raw image has been transferred to a computer, photographers can use processing software to crop or modify the image and enhance it through color correction and other specialized effects. Photographers who edit their own pictures use computers, high-quality printers, and editing software.
Some photographers use drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles, to capture shots. The drones are equipped with an integrated camera to capture 360° imagery of buildings, landscapes, scenery, or events.
Photographers who work for commercial clients often will present finalized photographs in a digital format to the client. Wedding and portrait photographers, who serve primarily noncommercial clients, frequently also provide framing services and present the photographs they capture in albums.
Many photographers are self-employed. Photographers who own and operate their own business have additional responsibilities. They must advertise, schedule appointments, set up and adjust equipment, purchase supplies, keep records, bill customers, pay bills, and—if they have employees—hire, train, and direct their workers.
In addition, some photographers teach photography classes or conduct workshops in schools or in their own studios.
The following are examples of types of photographers:
Portrait photographers take pictures of individuals or groups of people and usually work in their own studios. Photographers who specialize in weddings, religious ceremonies, or school photographs may work on location.
Commercial and industrial photographers take pictures of various subjects, such as buildings, models, merchandise, artifacts, and landscapes. These photographs, which frequently are taken on location, are used for a variety of purposes, including magazine covers and images to supplement analyses of engineering projects.
Aerial photographers travel in planes or helicopters to capture photographs of buildings and landscapes. They often use cameras with gyrostabilizers to counteract the movement of the aircraft and ensure high-quality images.
Scientific photographers focus on the accurate visual representation of subjects and therefore limit the use of image manipulation software to clarify an image. Scientific photographs record scientific or medical data or phenomena. Scientific photographers who take pictures of objects too small to be seen with the naked eye use microscopes to photograph their subjects.
News photographers, also called photojournalists, photograph people, places, and events for newspapers, journals, magazines, or television. In addition to taking still photos, photojournalists often work with digital video.
Fine-arts photographers sell their photographs as artwork. In addition to having technical knowledge of subjects such as lighting and the use of lenses, fine arts photographers need artistic talent and creativity. Most use traditional film instead of digital cameras.
Work Environment for Photographers
Photographers held about 147,300 jobs. The largest employers of photographers are as follows:
Self-employed workers - 68%
Photographic services - 18%
Broadcasting (except Internet) - 2%
Newspaper, periodical, book, and directory publishers - 2%
The work environment for photographers varies considerably with their specialty.
Portrait photographers may work in studios, but they also often travel to take photographs at a client's location, such as a school, a company office, or a private home.
News photographers and commercial photographers may travel locally or internationally. News photographers often work long, irregular hours in uncomfortable or even dangerous surroundings and must be available to work on short notice. For example, a news photographer may be sent to a war zone to capture images.
Aerial photographers often work in planes or helicopters.
Most photographers stand or walk for long periods while carrying heavy equipment.
Photographer Work Schedules
About 3 in 10 photographers work part-time. Hours often are flexible so that photographers can meet with current and potential clients or visit the sites where they will work. Demand for certain types of photographers may fluctuate with the season. For example, the demand for wedding photographers typically increases in the spring and summer.
How to Become a Photographer
Get the education you need: Find schools for Photographers near you!
Although postsecondary education is not required for portrait photographers, many take classes because employers usually seek applicants with a "good eye" and creativity, as well as a good technical understanding of photography. Photojournalists and industrial and scientific photographers often need a bachelor's degree.
Education for Photographers
Although postsecondary education is not required for most photographers, many take classes or earn a bachelor's degree in a related field because such an education can improve their skills and employment prospects.
Many universities, community and junior colleges, vocational-technical institutes, and private trade and technical schools offer classes in photography. Basic courses in photography cover equipment, processes, and techniques. Art schools may offer useful training in photographic design and composition.
Entry-level positions in photojournalism or in industrial or scientific photography generally require a college degree in photography or in a field related to the industry in which the photographer seeks employment. For example, classes in biology, medicine, or chemistry may be useful for scientific photographers.
Business, marketing, and accounting classes can be helpful for self-employed photographers.
Photographers have a talent or natural ability for taking good photos, and this talent is typically cultivated over years of practice. Photographers often start working as an assistant to a professional photographer, learning on the job. This work provides an opportunity to gain experience, build the photographers' portfolios, and gain exposure to prospective clients. In addition, photographers must be trained on how to use the picture-editing software.
For many artists, including photographers, developing a portfolio—a collection or archive of a photographer's or artist's work that demonstrates his or her styles and abilities—is essential. A portfolio is necessary because art directors, clients, and others often want to look at one when deciding whether to hire or contract with a particular photographer.
Important Qualities for Photographers
Artistic ability. Photographers capture their subjects in images, and they must evaluate the artistic quality of a photograph. Photographers need a "good eye": the ability to use colors, shadows, shades, light, and distance to compose good photographs.
Business skills. Photographers must plan marketing strategies, reach out to prospective clients, and anticipate seasonal employment.
Computer skills. Most photographers do their own postproduction work and must be familiar with photo-editing software. They also use computers to maintain a digital portfolio.
Customer-service skills. Photographers must understand the needs of their clients and propose solutions to any problems that arise.
Detail oriented. Photographers who do their own postproduction work must be careful not to overlook details and must be thorough when editing photographs. In addition, photographers accumulate many photographs and must maintain them in an orderly fashion.
Interpersonal skills. Photographers often photograph people. They must communicate and be flexible when working with clients in order to achieve the desired composition in a photograph.