Photography is competitive. It’s an art, and like all creative industries, someone else always has a better idea or images to show off. Still, that isn’t to say that you cannot prepare yourself to become a more intersting prospect to employers. A college degree will help open doors, but for a photographer, it’s more about how skillful you can be with the tools and creativity you have.
Some individuals might take online schooling to give them an edge; others decide on building their skills by snapping pictures of random objects. No matter if you choose schooling or self-taught experiences, some tips will give you a leg up while others will be a just a waste of time.
Most photographs get by on just a high school diploma and raw talent, but remember, more education translates to better pay. Not only will you earn more, but earning a higher education degree will expose you to techniques and build skills you may not have known before. You’ll learn how to manipulate pictures. New editing techniques. You can even become part of a respected institution certified to prepare for a career in photography.
Education may not be a requirement, but with so much competition, it gives you a leg up. Just imagine you’re interviewing for a position as a photographer. You have only a high school diploma; your competition has a 4-year degree. Both of you possess wonderful portfolios, but because of the 4-year degree, the employer decides to select your competition for the job. It may not seem necessary, but earning a degree from an accredited university does give you a major advantage.
Build a Portfolio
You might be able to render photos that inspire, capture emotion or even tell a story, but if you cannot render proof of your skills, it’s pointless. You must build a portfolio. Take your best snapshots and save them for a professional portfolio. Retouch pictures using Photoshop. Use different lenses to capture the same picture. Change the lighting. Whatever you do, make sure the best work you wish to display looks flawless.
Remember, a portfolio just shows off your pictures. This is the time to showcase your best work, including photographs you may have taken while competing your online photography degree. Some include them in a binder. Others have digital portfolios. However you do it, make a portfolio and include your best work.
Education and portfolio work wonders in helping you secure your dream job as a photographer, but you need experience. An internship will equip you with hands-on training to understand the complexities of the industry. You’ll have deadlines. Work with professional photographers. Manage information and even help build a portfolio and set of skills you can use to showcase to employers.
An internship also gives you the chance to work for a professional agency and display to employers that, yes, you can perform this job and some of the challenging tasks that may come with it. However, many internships require individuals to be enrolled in an accredited university.