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Photographer Career Traits & Characteristics

Do You Have What it Takes?

Photographers encounter a variety of situations on the job. Freelancers must be able to set up and operate their own businesses. Photographers working in specialized fields such as crime scene photography, archival work, or medical and scientific photography must learn detailed procedures and keep up with developments in these fields. Depending on the type of photography you want to do, you will use some or all of these traits:

  • Organizational skills: record keeping, time management
  • Technical Aptitude: selecting, maintaining, and using appropriate Creativity: an "eye" for composition, lighting and design helps you "get the shot."
  • Flexibility: adapts to changes in schedules, assignments, client priorities, etc.
  • Tolerance: Photojournalists and travel photographers work among varying cultures and customs.
  • Patience: Photography requires patience, especially when it involves live subjects
  • Learning: Current knowledge of technology and industry trends
  • Positive Attitude: Things can and do go wrong!
  • Teamwork: You may work with clients, subjects, colleagues and editors.

Photographers do many different types of work. Client needs and working conditions determine successful characteristics of photographers doing each kind of work.


Choose your Career in Photography

Depending on their work, photographers face a variety of working conditions. For example, portrait photographers may not be concerned with bad weather and international travel, but they must have patience when working with small children and animals. It's a good idea to study the working conditions and educational requirements for the types of photography that interest you.

This will help you find a photographic career that works for you.


Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics


Related Career Resources

Photography Colleges and Schools

Photography Career Information

Photography Career Outlook & Salary Information

How to Become a Photographer


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