Many individuals exploring a career in photography possess a keen eye for capturing special moments on film. Photography offers creative opportunities that produce stirring images, sources of communication and memories. Many colleges and universities offer photography programs in which students may enhance their skills, learn new digital and scientific techniques, develop their artistic style and produce creative photographs. This profession covers a wide spectrum of fields ranging from forensics and journalism photography to portraits and artistic adventures.
The work of photojournalists appears in a variety of media outlets ranging from newspapers and magazines to websites. Print media usually hire full-time staff photographers; however, they do contract free-lancers from time to time. Deadlines factor into this line of work, so individuals pursuing this type of career must work well under pressure. Pictures within this medium usually reveal strong emotion and give insight to a person’s story, whether it’s front-page political news or championship basketball games.
Forensic photographers typically work in conjunction with crime scene investigations at the local, state and federal level. Individuals pursuing this avenue use computers, digital cameras, ultraviolet and infrared photography, and other visual equipment to capture legal evidence. Their work largely involves depicting crime scenes from various angles and distances by using multifunctional cameras. In addition, they take pictures in hospitals. This type of photography, although technical in nature, involves highly emotional subject matter, as most of the pictures reveal injured or deceased persons. Photographers in this field must possess a great deal of knowledge regarding human anatomy and forensic procedures.
Portrait and Wedding Photographer
Portrait and wedding photographers specialize in capturing family moments. Many times these photographers, some of whom own their own studio, take candid shots that capture the intimacy within the relationship during a ceremony, or record a child’s milestone birthday or formal family picture. In addition, they frequently take pictures at quinceaneras, sweet sixteens, bar and bat mitzvah celebrations, and other special occasions.
Fashion photographers earn their living by taking pictures of models wearing high-end fashion down the runway, commercial fashion in a studio or swimsuits on a beach. They create fantasy images of the ideal look to encourage consumers to buy certain clothes, makeup, jewelry and accessories. Many of these photographers travel across the United States and Europe.
Nature, Wildlife and Travel Photographer
Nature, wildlife and travel photographers take pictures of diverse animals, landscapes, environments and destinations. The specialty lies in documenting the beauty and impact of nature and its inhabitants. Some pictures expose the dangers of man’s overbearing presence and the need to protect and preserve certain animals and wildlife, whereas other photos entice the viewer to visit a particular vacation spot. Photo subjects include deserts in Africa, Mayan temples in Guatemala, alligators in the Everglades and frozen caves in Antarctica. Most nature, wildlife and travel photography appears online and in magazines, books, environmental reports and museums.