Sure, people make a comfortable living capturing images in a variety of settings without going through a university-level photography program. It is possible to become a freelance/self-employed photographer and sell your images to magazines, publishers or other clients solely on the basis of the photos and your reputation.
However, a degree in photography from one of the excellent colleges or technical schools might be the ticket you need to land one of the jobs that let you capture amazing images while being paid well (not to mention holiday and medical benefits).
A photography diploma you may open a lot of opportunities that wouldn't otherwise be available. Many employers look for graduates of top-rated university programs. If you want to work in the commercial photography world or with a major corporation, a diploma might be the key that opens the door for you.
Photographers who succeed have what is often called a "good eye". They are creative and recognize a great image when it is right there in front of them.
Well-paid photographers go one step further and learn how to create the right images, setting up a "shoot" for a specific product or fashion designer. A photography diploma may provide just the training needed to prepare you for this challenge.
If you want to pursue a photography career you probably need to get some experience, even if it means capturing images on your own and marketing them to magazines or companies that buy photos.
Build a portfolio of great images then combine this with a diploma or certificate that shows you have been through formal training in the field.
It's not absolutely necessary to have a photography degree to succeed as a photographer.
But if you want to work in the medical-photography field or in a university setting you may have to have at least a bachelor's degree. One way to prepare for a complete program is to participate in photography workshops or short-term programs that allow you to gain experience.
It's a fact that the standards in the field of photography vary quite a bit depending on the specialization you select. But one thing you will need in any sector of professional photography is a good portfolio. A strong record of work you have done will be crucial to success.
As you go through the process of selecting a good photography diploma program, consider joining one or more of the professional organizations associated with this career.
Job opportunities will be listed in professional journals and photography magazines. When you apply for these jobs you will need a record of past experience and good references from people who are established in the field of photography.
A diploma won't necessarily give you the inter-personal skills and business skills you need to succeed in this profession but many university-level programs do offer some digital photography training in these areas.
It's certain that most of the current photography-diploma programs will focus on digital technology and computer-assisted photo editing/manipulation. It may be easier to get technical knowledge and skills in a diploma course than trying to gain these skills on your own.
You may also get a good portion of photography history, record-keeping skills and theory in course that leads to a photography diploma. These skills may not be so easy to acquire if you work on your own as a freelancer.
There are excellent diploma programs in major cities around the world, including:
Leading photography programs are also offered at the
The majority of photographers are self-employed
There is constant demand for skilled photographers but the competition for the best freelance contracts and salaried positions is very strong. The majority of photographers are self-employed.
But the photographers that hold salaried positions usually have a photography diploma. They tend to be paid more on an annual basis than freelance photographers.
It's not absolutely necessary to have a photography diploma to be successful. But records of labor income show that those who secure a salaried position with a degree earn 50 percent to 100 percent more on an annual basis.