While photography work is often done on a freelance basis, there are actually other avenues for employment that are a little bit more substantial.
Here are several options on what to do, once you’ve graduated from a photography degree.
Depending on what area you specialise in, this job can see you photographing politicians one moment to a children’s daycare the next. With the changes in the news print media landscape, these positions are far and few between, but still rewarding nonetheless.
Photojournalists will generally work for a news media outlet and on either a contract or full-time basis. In each instance, most of the work is sporadic and it’s hard to fully plan out your month in terms of what you’ll be shooting. But it’s varying work that will challenge your skills and potentially have you seeing new sights and travelling.
This work also sees you work in tandem with the journalists on the angle of the story and whom it’s targeted at.
Alternatively, some photojournalists still work for themselves and will instead capture significant key moments in the region and try to sell them to the publication – a bit of a riskier move if you don’t have prior contacts or an understanding of the publication’s needs.
2. Photo Editor
This position is less about actually photography and more about the editing process that comes after it. At many publications, particularly for magazines, there will be someone who sits under the title of ‘Photo Editor’.
The role of this worker is to coordinate photos, select the images and go through the editing process of getting the image up to the standard of the publication. This means a thorough understanding of print and online specifications for images is needed. So if you’re handy with the behind the scenes process and prefer the insides of an office, this could be a position worth looking into.
3. Portrait Photographer
We’ve all had a photo taken by one of these photographers, whether for work, graduation or school, and it serves as a stable income for those in the industry. While limiting on creativity, it will help perfect your skills working with people to elicit the best response for the final image.
Companies like Arthur Reed, Leading Image and Reed Graduations, operate in the region and take on photographers for the busy seasons of portrait work. These jobs are relatively simple point and shoot jobs, with the only real challenge working with the subjects themselves.
4. Photography Teacher
This option will require some further study, as to become a teacher you will need extra qualifications rather than just the photography degree. Depending on what level you hope to teach (primary, secondary or tertiary) it will alter the requirements needed to achieve it.
Places like Oxygen College also hire photographers as teachers, and the requirements are usually an online course to undertake before setting foot in the classroom.
It’s a worthwhile thing to pursue, as photography teaching is more guaranteed work where other options can be more sporadic.
5. Band Photographer
While there are many music photographers out there, the holy grail of work in the music industry as a photographer is getting selected as the resident band photographer. This means that you will cover everything from press images and behind the scenes shots to coverage of their tour.
It’s a position that’s gained after proving your worth and understanding of the band’s image, but it can mean some guaranteed work when the band is approaching a tour or new release.
For Peking Duk they use Pat Stevenson and photographer Kane Hibberd is used for the likes of Violent Soho, Grinspoon and 360. Obviously things can still change, but there is often a mutual understanding between the duo and a need for wanting consistency in the imagery of the band.