Photography programs at colleges all over the country are holding graduation ceremonies this month, which means there are probably more than a few soon-to-be graduates asking themselves: Now what? How do I find work in the industry? How do I start a career?
To help make the transition from college to work a little less daunting, we've compiled a list of recent stories that provide invaluable tips and advice about starting a career as a photographer. The advice comes from industry veterans, as well as PDN's 30 photographers, many of whom were photo students themselves not long ago. Together, these stories provide both inspiration and information--about resources, financial management, lessons they didn't learn in school (but wish the had), financial management, assisting, marketing and other topics that aspiring photographers need in order to start successful careers.
2014 PDN’s 30 photographers Bobby Doherty (still life), Billy Kidd (fashion), and Bryan Derballa (editorial/lifestyle), discuss how they found their visual styles, how they use social media to get noticed, build networks and land jobs, and the importance of learning and practicing good business skills.
10 photographers who've recently earned graduate and post-graduate degrees answer the question, “What lessons didn’t you learn in art school that have been important to your career?” (for PDN subscribers)
Emerging photographers featured in our 2011 PDN's 30 issue share the most important lessons they’ve learned about marketing, business and setting themselves apart.
Photographers featured in recent PDN’s 30 issues share the best and worst decisions they made when they began shooting full time.
Professional photographers share how they hire assistants, and what makes an assistant get rehired.
Jesse Dittmar, Therese Gietler and Ari Michelson offer tips to aspiring photographers about how to get hired by the best photographers as as a freelance assistant, and how to comport yourself on set so you get re-hired.
PDN's profiles of top assistants, with galleries of their portfolios, plus links to stories about photographers who recently made the move from assisting to launching their own careers.
James Estrin, founder and co-editor of Lens, the popular New York Times photography blog, talks about how to launch a successful career as a photojournalist. His tips and insight cover how to choose meaningful projects, the importance of photojournalistic process, and practical advice about portfolios, mentors, and relationship-building with editors and peers.
Miller Mobley built a successful business as an editorial and commercial photographer in his native Alabama, then gave it up to start all over again in New York City. He discusses how he landed jobs in both places, and the importance of showing new work to potential clients every time he approaches them.