Just read a lot about your craft. Learn as much as you can and apply that. You'll soon come up with great works of art. Definitely take a class in high school. Maybe as an elective in college, but like some of the other posters said, most of the hard work is in advertising yourself. High school level likely won't teach you too much, but it's an amazing excuse to keep working and practicing, and you'll also have a group of people giving you feedback.
I spend at least 2 hours every day looking for models who I want to work with on a given project which is all about selling myself. You're better off working towards a degree in business management, marketing, or something like that. Also, if you don't succeed in photography, it gives you some great backup possibilities.
Photography is a hard, career. Better to think of it as a side job. I don't know a single photographer who does it full time. You can be successful and make good money, but the demand isn't too high. I only shoot 4 times a week and I market the hell out of myself.
You have some decent starter equipment. But something you'll learn is it isn't the equipment that makes the photographer. I've seen amazing photos from point and shoots. Just read a lot. Look at good photos real long and hard and try to figure out what it is you like about them. Try to replicate that. Just keep the passion and always be trying new things. Find what you love about it and keep working.
CVS Photo Tech guys don't make bad money, pretty good pay for an entry level job that anyone can get. Sears, JC Penny, and of course local studios also hire. Then there are your local photography stores, if you have any. The more photography knowledge you have the better, and having classes racked up helps also. I want to be a photographer so I took as many photo courses as I could in high school, which came out to 10. Definitely take courses and I cannot stress this enough. If you want to do this, then do it. Do not worry do not think do not deviate just do.
I'm starting college in a couple weeks and I could not be more excited about my degree, which is a B.F.A in Photography.
You need to practice and find what you truly love to do. If you do not have anything in your arsenal that makes you stand out, you will never make it. Whether that is incredible shots, a great skill at a certain aspect of photography, or something different(I personally went for something different), just do the best you can and then make it seem like you're better than that in your work.
A lot of practice. Build your portfolio. Stop taking pictures of your friends at the park, or your shoes, or your pets, or like, something sterotypical like that. Start thinking about what employers and clients will WANT. When you go to a professional portrait studio, what kind of images do you expect to get? When you hire a photographer for an event, or when you take a look at a newspaper, what sort of photos do you expect to see?
Practice. Just like an illustrator, the more defined your talent is, the better. And just like all artists, Photography is a highly competitive field. go out with your camera for a day and do all sorts of things. Expand your expertise. Don't limit yourself to portraits or landscape photos. Try low-light settings, concert photography. Work with film. Practice more technical things like long exposures, HDR, infrared, tilt-shifting, shoot in film.
Decide what direction you want to go. Do you want to freelance, have your own studio or business, become a photojournalist, a fine artist? Once you decide what you want to do, you put a lot of effort into doing it, but do not limit yourself to just this focus.
Definitely learn how to operate a camera. I mean knowing what ISO, Aperture, Shutter Speed, all that crazy fun stuff does.
Start building a resume. Even if you just volunteer for shooting a fundraising event, or a Walk/Marathon, or when you go to College, volunteering with your school's newspaper. Begin offering professional-grade portraits to friends and family at little to no cost, and as word of mouth spreads, begin charging.
Network. Network, Network, Network. Network with friends, with other classmates, when people from newspapers, with people in high business positions, network with charities, network with teachers. Network. I work at a chain of 1-hour professional portrait studios. We shoot, process and edit, sell and print portraits. Almost everyday, I listen to my studio manager rant about the person SHE works for, the district manager. This guy knows nothing about Photography, nor is he that great of a business man, really. He makes six figures in his position he got because he had good connections.
As for classes after high school? I definitely recommend it. I wouldn't make my major Photography, but definitely take classes. I taught myself photography, including the technical aspects. When I entered college, I was shocked to find out I knew more and was better than people calling themselves artists. At first I thought taking classes would be a waste of time, but it really wasn't. I have actually learned a lot more doing so, and have gotten to try out many different photo styles and subjects. Having an experienced instructor there is fantastic for progressing and learning what you're doing wrong and how to improve, too.
And practice. Again. Lots and lots of practice.
I'm still in college myself, but there's my two cents.
Read and learn as much as you can about photography techniques and I would suggest joining a forum www.thephotographyforum.com to be exact. Its a great forum (extremly straight forward and to the point so if you are sensitive or dont have rough skin, tread lightly. But I do suggest checking it out!) honestly I was thinking about going to school for photography but all they are going to teach you is the basics and a few tricks that you can learn 100% on your own. honestly most 'photographers' are either wedding photographers or get a 'photography job' at walmart taking posed pictures of random people. If you want to be a freelance, you are going to have to try and be the best of the best. It is a tough industry to get into, but not impossible! Ps you are from around toronto? I am too!
Nothing is wrong with it but it seems to be one of main types of photography that 'professional' photographers do I mean there is a dime a dozen of photographers who have good gear who are willing to do wedding photographs. Not that its a bad thing, again, weddings are crazy to photograph and its good experiance but its hard to break away from it once you get pulled in.
Oh, it really isn't that hard to break away from wedding photography, considering it's one of the most stressing sort of photography, with people usually bitching at you for taking their pictures. Not hard to break from if you have no problems saying "no"
Thats true, in a sence. But if you are trying to make photographing a career and the only income you are getting is from photographing weddings and thats how people know you, its hard to break away from it. (money wise anyways lol)
Well, depends what you're breaking away to I guess. I had no problem getting into studio and location portrait photography as a wedding photographer. I still do weddings though, but very rarely, since I got sick of people trying to scam me for money.
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`anmari has been spreading her infectious positivity throughout our community for over 6 years. Throughout this time Ana has been at the core of all things devious, passionately developing an eclectic gallery, helping organise devmeets, participating in chat events and also recently completed dedicating her time as a Community Volunteer. We are absolutely delighted to bestow the Deviousness Award for May 2013 to `anmari, congratulations! Read More