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Graduate Photography Jobs

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Helping you find a career in the Photography industry

As a photographer you could work anywhere and be responsible for immortalising some of the most beautiful or powerful moments in the world. Or you could be snapping some of the most special moments in people’s lives, like their wedding or birthday. Or maybe you’ll be a high-fashion photographer, getting the cover shot for a glamorous magazine.

There are an array of different areas of photography that you could go into and it’s a career choice that will allow you to truly pursue your interests and passions.
Most photographers will either be freelance or work in a studio. In a studio you may have the equipment provided for you, but as a freelancer you will need to have your own equipment.

You can be somewhat flexible with photography work although the income can also be very unstable. You’ll be paid hourly, or by the project, and very few photographers will have a salary.

You could work strange hours and will likely be required to travel between locations (unless you work within a studio).

Although photography can be about self-expression, you will also most likely have to work to a client brief, so being able to take direction whilst putting your own creative spin on an idea is often a delicate balance for photographers.

Skills & interests required for a career in Photography
Photographers must have a keen eye for detail and also have the technical knowledge to take a series of photographs with the right equipment and settings. Many photographers also develop their photo editing skills to polish their work.

As a freelance photographer you will be required to work with clients and deliver to their briefs. Therefore, you will need to have good communication skills and be able to build up a rapport with clients. In this field of work your reputation will spread quickly through word of mouth, so client satisfaction is very important.

You should also keep up to date with industry developments and new technologies as it could potentially offer new opportunities for your work both creatively and commercially.
- Attention to detail
- Conflict Resolution
- Creativity
- Patience
- Self-Confidence
Graduate schemes & other typical career progression routes in Photography
The career path you take in photography will purely depend upon your career goals.

For example, do you want to own your own photography studio? If so, you may start out as an assistant and slowly take on more experience and progress to a senior photographer. After you have some experience and money behind you, you could take the plunge to open your own studio.

Perhaps your goal is to be a successful freelance photographer, travelling the world to take photos for clients. For this, your focus will be more on building up an online following of your work on a platform such as Instagram, marketing yourself and your skills in local press or community groups, and building connections within the industry.

As you progress in your career, you may specialise in a specific kind of photography – for example weddings, animals, forensic or even underwater photography.
Tips for getting into the field
Get snapping! Take photos of things that inspire you, or that you want to photograph, and explore your interests.

Create your own website. Having an online body of work will be extremely helpful when pitching yourself to clients and will also allow you to build your own client base.
However, this can involve some initial investment and also require admin work to stay on top of. You might initially want to try joining a freelancer network to build some contacts and a client base.
How much can graduates earn in Photography?
According to the National Careers Service a starter salary for an assistant photographer is between £14,000-£18,000. A photographer with a lot of experience who has progressed to a senior creative manager can earn £50,000.
What qualifications do I need for a career in Photography?
There are not any formal requirements to be a photographer, and the best way for you to develop is to practice wherever you can and build up your professional portfolio.

There are many photography degrees available, which can be a great structured way to learn about the art and explore different styles of photography. Other subjects that could help you at A-level are art, media studies and design technology.

If you are a graduate who did not study photography (or a creative degree at all), you could consider doing a part-time or online courses in photography and photo editing to help fill in any technical gaps that you may have.

The most important things to have with photography are: 1) practical knowledge of your camera and how it works so that you can optimise the settings for your photos and 2) a good creative eye.
Read more about the Photography industry

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