Photographers

Photograph people, landscapes, merchandise, or other subjects, using digital or film cameras and equipment. May develop negatives or use computer software to produce finished images and prints. Includes scientific photographers, aerial photographers, and photojournalists.

Median Annual Wage: $30,490

Education: High school diploma or equivalent (28%); Associate's degree (20%); Less than high school diploma (16%)

Projected Growth: Slower than average (3% to 7%)

Related Job Titles: Photojournalist; Photographer; Newspaper Photographer; Advertising Photographer; Photo Editor; Sports Photographer; Commercial Photographer; Owner/Photographer; Portrait Photographer; Studio Owner

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Source: O*NET OnLine information for Photographers.

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  • Determine desired images and picture composition, selecting and adjusting subjects, equipment, and lighting to achieve desired effects.
  • Adjust apertures, shutter speeds, and camera focus based on a combination of factors such as lighting, field depth, subject motion, film type, and film speed.
  • Create artificial light, using flashes and reflectors.
  • Manipulate and enhance scanned or digital images to create desired effects, using computers and specialized software.
  • Transfer photographs to computers for editing, archiving, and electronic transmission.
  • Determine project goals, locations, and equipment needs by studying assignments and consulting with clients or advertising staff.
  • Review sets of photographs to select the best work.
  • Perform general office duties such as scheduling appointments, keeping books, and ordering supplies.
  • Estimate or measure light levels, distances, and numbers of exposures needed, using measuring devices and formulas.
  • Test equipment prior to use to ensure that it is in good working order.
  • Set up, mount, or install photographic equipment and cameras.
  • Select and assemble equipment and required background properties, according to subjects, materials, and conditions.
  • Take pictures of individuals, families, and small groups, either in studio or on location.
  • Direct activities of workers who are setting up photographic equipment.
  • Perform maintenance tasks necessary to keep equipment working properly.
  • Produce computer-readable, digital images from film, using flatbed scanners and photofinishing laboratories.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Photographers.

  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Instructing - Teaching others how to do something.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Photographers.

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