Becoming a Photographer
Becoming a professional photographer
Becoming a professional photographer puts one in a postion where the competition is tough to say the least. There are many photographic enthusiasts who consider themselves photographers and who advertise as such, but who really don't possess the credentials or experience to call themselves a "professional". To earn a living at their craft, professional photographers must possess a full knowledge of their equipment, the medium they are working in, whether it be film or digital, and experience in dealing with people. Any amateur can take a regular photo, but it takes talent to bring out the best in a person or a situation.
Education is important in photography. Photography is an art form but the importance of learning how to properly use the tools and to get the most out of a subject cannot be overlooked. Knowledge of film and digital cameras, chemicals, outdoor versus indoor lighting, compostion and a multitude of other factors all come into play in the photographer's job. Experience is also part of education and is also quite important. Through experience the photgrapher becomes familiar with his medium and the tools used to convey the images that he or she hopes will last though the years as a representaion of the best of his or her work. The photographer also learns how to work with people and, if he or she so chooses, with nature. Landscape, weather and animal photography all require a certain amount of expertise not only for the best resulting shot but for safety as well.
Any person can become a professional film photographer or a professional digital photographer by taking the time to learn. Colleges have classes and there is online coursework through which one can participate in discussions and complete assignments. Also, one can work as an assistant to a photographer and learn quite a few things as well. Hands on experience is always a good educator, and if one is apprenticed to a competant photographer one can see first hand how to succeed.
There are also, besides traditional coursework certification, certification available from programs given through different photography organizations throughout the world. These programs can elevate a photgrapher's chances of getting good, high paying work. They require portfolio representation as well as continuing education and testing for re-certification every few years to prove the knowledge necessary to be called "professional". When a photgrapher can say he or she belongs to a certain accredited organization, it raises the bar for higher pay rate and desirability for his or her talent. There are many photography jobs that can be had and many avenues to travel when one is a professional photographer. Putting the effort in and by really getting to know one's medium can make the difference between being an amateur photographer and being a well paid professional with a photography business.