21st Century Careers: Photographer

By Nia Williams ('22) and NahI Imran ('22)


Photo courtesy of Wix

A photographer’s job is to tell a story in a single picture. But before someone approaches the path to becoming a photographer, they may wish to go to college.


Many individuals study photography for four years in a college to get their Bachelors degree. It also depends on what type of field in photography someone wants to do.


There are many colleges and schools available to become a professional photographer like Tisch School of Arts (NYU), Yale University- School of Arts, Syracuse University and many more.


Observing and practicing will make a better photographer at the end. It’s also possible to sign up for a photography program and get a certificate.It looks good on resumes, just like having a bachelor's degree.


Freelance photographer Ms. Marcy Harrell said, ”Yes, absolutely I wasn't professionally trained at first but I did take a 3-month power training course through Lors Photography and other than that I just picked up some books and a camera and really immersed myself in it.”

Photographers have many responsibilities like marketing and advertising services to attract clients, archive and manage imagery, use photo-enhancing software and etc. The working hours are about 40 hours per week. Photography is also about making sure the subject feels comfortable with having their picture taken,and is having fun while doing it.


Ms. Harrell said, ”Every photographer has there own personality but some skills that would be of value are definitely patience and making people comfortable you do have to have a certain level of charisma.”


A photographer’s salary depends on many important factors such as education, certification, skills, and the number of years they spent on this profession. In the United States a photographer make about $50,122 to $71,279 but it depends on the job. An average photographer makes $38,660 and a the median salary is $34,070. The photographer’s who are in the lower 10 percent get paid under $19,110 and those who are in the higher 10 percent get paid over $76,220.


According to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics the job outlook for a photographer is about an 8 percent decline through 2026 because the prices have dropped for digital cameras and amateurs started taking more interest in photography.

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