Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
04-27-2008, 12:35 PM   #1
New Member




Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: texas hill country
Posts: 16
photography as a job, suggestions?

I'm in high school and I'm looking into photography as a career choice. I was wondering if anyone would have any suggestions about how to get a start on that. Please post any insight u might have. P.S. I should mention I'm also home schooled.


Last edited by photofreak88; 04-27-2008 at 03:41 PM.
04-27-2008, 12:40 PM   #2
Veteran Member
simons-photography's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Northamptonshire - England
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 496
try to beat the other 50-100 applicants I got nowhere but then I'm not qualified or interested in fashion type stuff
04-27-2008, 01:36 PM   #3
New Member




Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: texas hill country
Posts: 16
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by simons-photography Quote
try to beat the other 50-100 applicants I got nowhere but then I'm not qualified or interested in fashion type stuff
wow arn't u just a ray of sunshine. lol well i am intrested in fashion so maybe i could try something there
04-27-2008, 01:38 PM   #4
Veteran Member
simons-photography's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Northamptonshire - England
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 496
I'm afraid its a competitive world

04-27-2008, 02:16 PM   #5
Ash
Community Manager
Loyal Site Supporter
Ash's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Toowoomba, Queensland
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 23,777
photofreak,

There are a lot of pros in this forum who could impart some of their wisdom from their careers, but you might do well to be a little more specific with your questions to get more of a discussion going.

One way to test your desire for photography (as a Pentaxian) is to answer the quiz on PENTAXIAN.com | The Community for PENTAX Users just for fun...
04-27-2008, 02:36 PM   #6
Veteran Member




Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Posts: 2,027
Hmmmm good question.

Take a look at Benjamin Kanarek Photographer ftvstudio.com featured member and see if you can figure out how he gets his shots. If you feel you can have a style and flair like Ben then go for fashion.

I shoot more lifestyle and do it semi-professionally right now so check out Photography 2.0 - Uconventional - Unrestriced - Unreal- powered by SmugMug and see if that is something you're more adept to.

You really have to take a long hard look at where you are right now and where you want to be in 5 years from now. I know where I'm at making decent money shooting model portfolios and the occasional wedding and I hope to branch out in the next couple years to doing more fashion stuff once I get a grasp on the higher end lighting techniques and develop my own style and flair.
04-27-2008, 03:20 PM   #7
New Member




Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: texas hill country
Posts: 16
Original Poster
thank you all for ur input i'll definitely keep it in mind. as to more specific questions i was wondering if people could tell me maybe of how they themselves got going maybe it would give all of us younger folks some ideas on how to get started.


Last edited by photofreak88; 04-27-2008 at 04:15 PM.
04-27-2008, 03:33 PM   #8
Veteran Member
PaulAndAPentax's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Jacksonville, Florida
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 390
You might consider going to college and getting a degree also. I might suggest a Bachelor in Fine Arts with photography as the focus. You might also do a minor in business as it will help. You could even consider reversing that and getting a business degree with a minor in photography. Depending on how much HS you have left, get on with the school paper or start one if you haven't already. It may not be what you want to do but the exposure will sure help a lot. (never mind, I just saw you are home schooled)

Read, read, read, and read more. What ever you can get your hands on that deals with understanding exposure, lighting, etc.

See if you can find a local photographer that shoots what you are interested in and ask whether they would allow you to intern.

Research the military, believe it or not. I can't speak for other services, but you can join the Navy, get photography school, and become a photographer while on active duty. You may not find the military appealing but its an option to get some school if college isn't an option.

Dig into good professional forums where you can look at good photos and read what experienced people have to say. PentaxForums is good, but I also am talking about forums for pro wedding shooters, etc. Check out flickr.com. There are a few good groups there where a lot of good photogs and pros mingle.

Just so you know, I am not a pro but have started doing some semi-pro work. I am older and have a full time career. My goals long term are to build a local wedding/event photog business to take full time after retirement.

Last edited by PaulAndAPentax; 04-27-2008 at 06:23 PM.
04-27-2008, 04:38 PM   #9
Veteran Member




Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Posts: 2,027
Wow... how did I get a photography business.

I bought a K10D in February 2007, shot a ton of pictures and just filed all my paperwork for my business and have my license and everything. I specialize in nightclub/bar photography and model portfolios. It makes decent money, but I keep my day job just in case.

I never took a class in photography, never bought a book on it and never followed another photographer...

I'm one of those strange cases where I applied myself to something and gobbled up as much information as possible and kept practicing.

I'm still learning and spend a lot of time looking at great pictures and figuring out how to recreate it. Since then I've worked on my own style and it's caught on.

Not sure what else to say... but it may not be advisable to go my route.
04-27-2008, 05:59 PM   #10
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
khardur's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: NW Massachusetts
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,557
For one thing, I think there's a lot more opportunity out there than people think, and though it's some of the more popular stuff on the boards, it isn't all about fashion. It depends somewhat on the type of photography you do/want to do, and to some extent your location.

You don't sound too focused on anything at the moment, judging by the vagueness of your question. For a no-cost look at what you could be doing with your camera, I suggest checking your local library to get ideas. To get title ideas try just searching amazon under "Career Opportunities in Photography" - I think that's actually the title of one of the books I've seen.

Although I don't make near as much at photography at the moment, I can say I did photography professionally for about 4 years, doing photography for a newspaper, along with a few freelance jobs for theatre that started me out. Then I got a much more stable, higher paying job (with good benefits too) and I "dropped out" for awhile. Sure, it's tough, but I'd venture it's not any tougher than running any other type of business by yourself, they all have their own uphill challenges.

as for how I got started - I had taken a B&W class in high school, but discouraged by my parents. (snipped out life story here)
Took a few more B&W classes in college. I got a few jobs from word of mouth doing some publicity shots for a few plays. Then a few more. When I moved to my current location I saw an ad in the newspaper for a photographer. I worked there and during that time also got a 2nd job running a 1hour photo lab. (worst job I ever had, the thing that has resurrected my photo career (digital) also killed a lot of the local 1-hour labs around here.
Now I'm working on securing a show at a local museum, as well as selling loose and framed prints. (but to reiterate this is secondary to my full time job right now, which isn't photography related)
04-27-2008, 06:10 PM   #11
Veteran Member




Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Seattle, Washington, USA
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 812
photofreak88, I'll second the advice from Paul and Chris. Here's my two cents, as a former pro.

It's important to learn quite a bit about the history of photography, the reasons for the lasting influence of certain "star" photographers of their eras, and the various markets for photography, if you want to figure out how to make your work stand out. Markets are changing rapidly, so learn how to research the buyers out there, and how to reach them successfully. Keep that up, because the changes just keep comin'!

Network all you can, in person, online, and by joining professional photographer associations. Listen/read much more than you talk/post at first. Practice the advice you collect, and see what works for you, both technically (how do I shoot this?) and compositionally (what do my shots look like?). Read, talk, think, and practice some more. Be glad that you're able to do all this practice digitally, rather than paying by the roll for your practice, because there's an old film photographers' saying: "The percentage of good pictures ("keepers") rises in proportion to the number of crappy pictures ("throwaways") you've made."

Invest in both training and in good quality lenses as you are able to. Master the use of your equipment. Study lighting theory and practice. Study small business management (no point in trying to become a pro just to go broke, right?) and marketing (how to identify and reach buyers). Make friends and acquaintances in many different lines of work and walks of life, and learn to see what their worlds look like. My own years as a pro came about because I used to hang out with aeronautical engineers who knew I was a photographer and gave me a tip about a job opening for a technical photographer at a testing facility. You just never know where an opportunity will appear, so be prepared and available!

Be patient and persistent. Go for it if you really want it. Good luck, and good shooting!
04-27-2008, 07:28 PM   #12
Veteran Member




Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Norman, Oklahoma USA
Posts: 348
photofreak88,
I am surprised that no one has suggested that you get a college degree. Major in arts and photography. You may find that you have other photographic interests, and not just fashion. The degree is something you can always fall back on. Once you get that degree you will need to get to a city where fashion is a big industry. Dallas Tx. New York City, Etc. Go after your dream and do not let the nay sayers hold you back. I'm not a fashion photographer, but I do believe that the college degree will be a big asset in the long run. Remember, professional photography is a glamor profession and there will always be lots of competitors. Good luck to you.
04-27-2008, 11:14 PM   #13
Veteran Member




Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Seattle, Washington, USA
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 812
Kent, see post #8 above by PaulAndAPentax, who did suggest a college degree.
04-28-2008, 05:13 AM   #14
Veteran Member
Mike Cash's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Japan
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 6,951
QuoteOriginally posted by PaulAndAPentax Quote

Research the military, believe it or not. I can't speak for other services, but you can join the Navy, get photography school, and become a photographer while on active duty. You may not find the military appealing but its an option to get some school if college isn't an option.
If the OP decides that is of interest to him, he probably needs to move quickly. When I joined the Navy (1983) the job rating I was most interested in was PM (Photographer's Mate). I discovered it was a highly popular choice and that there was a waiting list over a year long. It's a hard field to get into and advancement is painfully slow, since it is a relatively small field and folks who go into it have a tendency to stay a loooong time. It wasn't unusual to see PMs who were still E4 or E5 despite having service stripes on their sleeves showing they had been on active duty for 12 or more years. Not that there was anything lacking with them as individuals, just that they had to wait for somebody to retire before a higher-ranked billet opened up, and even then competition for the few higher billets was tight. That so many folks who get into it stay in it despite the relatively poor opportunities for advancement speaks very well for it, I think. See the world, get kewl photo opportunities, get a regular paycheck, free medical/dental/housing, 30 days paid vacation, and a not-so-shabby retirement plan? What's not to like?
04-28-2008, 05:17 AM   #15
Veteran Member
PaulAndAPentax's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Jacksonville, Florida
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 390
QuoteOriginally posted by christinelandon Quote
Kent, see post #8 above by PaulAndAPentax, who did suggest a college degree.
Thanks, Christine....

A degree will do a lot for you. Along with what Christine mentioned, it will give you a good sound foundation upon which to build your craft. It will put you in contact with people that do this thing for a living. Most college teachers have field experience now a-days. It will increase your 'proper' vocabulary in photography and business so you sound like you know what you are saying. You'd be surprised how important that is today. You'll also get exposure to some business basics if you take some business classes. It'll help you manage your career. Lastly, it gives you a strong resume. You can produce a portfolio I am sure like everyone else, including myself....but with a degree you show you really want this, you are willing to start and finish a major undertaking, and you have more knowledge (at least on paper) than the next guy with a portfolio as good as yours.

...just some more ramblings...there is, for sure, more than one way to get into photography...good luck it is really rewarding to make images you and others are proud of.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
camera, photography
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Photography book suggestions cyy47 Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 1 08-17-2010 08:51 PM
Got my first photography job xs400 Photographic Industry and Professionals 23 07-28-2009 12:33 PM
Suggestions for street photography juicebox Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 25 01-11-2009 11:07 AM
photography as a job, suggestions? photofreak88 General Talk 12 04-30-2008 09:18 PM
Suggestions for macro photography xs400 Photographic Technique 9 05-18-2007 05:20 AM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:10 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top