As with any career where the path is a tricky one, the most important attribute you will need to have is determination to succeed. If you think it might be nice to be a professional photographer, but there are other careers you would also be happy in, don’t choose photography!
So, given that this is the career path you absolutely have to follow, which path is for you?
The portrait photographer will either work out of a studio, or have the occasional location job; school photographs, or headshots for actors, singers, and dancers. They will need excellent organisational skills, as they will most likely be doing their own diary-management, as well as keeping themselves fully apprised of the latest developments both in digital photography and post-production. Although no formal qualifications are required, a reasonably high level of training and professional competence are essential.
The family photographer will be almost entirely-studio based. Frequently dealing with fractious small children, their people skills are as important as their skills as a photographer. The family photographic shoot requires diplomacy, and an ability to keep people focussed yet relaxed. Like the portrait photographer, formal qualifications are desirable rather than essential.
Breaking into this glamorous side of the industry is incredibly difficult. The fashion photographer will require an extensive physical portfolio of their work, and also an excellent personal website to serve as a gallery. Their digital manipulation skill of the images they shoot should be exceptional. Unlike most other fields of professional photography, the fashion photographer should have an agent, who will negotiate the sale of their work on their behalf.
The photo journalist is essentially a storyteller, presenting the truth, with images seldom doctored before they find their way into print. Formal