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Photographer Job Description: Top Duties and Requirements

A Photographer is a professional who takes photographs with a film or digital camera. They use natural or artificial lighting to take images of different things, places, and people in a variety of settings. Whereas some Photographers are focused on exploring the natural, outside world, others specialize in studio work.

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What does a Photographer do?

Photographers work for clients in a wide range of photography jobs. Photographers who do corporate work tend to spend most of their time capturing images to be featured on business websites and promotional websites. Others work exclusively in certain niches of the industry, such as graduation, wedding and other event-type settings. A Photographer may also choose to focus on the artistic side of photography. Such a Photographer chooses their own material and subjects that they wish to shoot.

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Photographer duties and responsibilities

A Photographer produces images that showcase an object or location, record an event, or tell a story. They use the appropriate professional equipment and their creativity and technical expertise to create commercial-quality photographs. This usually requires the choice of excellent photographic enhancing tools and a camera. Photographers have many duties and responsibilities to take care of. These include:

  • Operating different programs and technological equipment, such as Photoshop
  • Photographing subjects, such as events, landscapes, products, and models
  • Setting up the necessary lighting at their location of work or studio
  • Identifying the locations which are most likely to generate the best pictures
  • Conducting observations and tests to determine which camera settings and equipment should be used
  • Deciding on the composition of the picture in advance, sometimes putting together a mood board or making sketches
  • Using specialized equipment and photo editing software applications to edit and digitize pictures
  • Considering the specifications of a client when preparing budgets and invoices

Photographer skills and qualifications

A Photographer must exhibit a good balance of creativity and technical expertise . A successful Photographer candidate must, therefore, have various prerequisite skills and qualifications needed for their duties. These include:

  • Having the body strength to lift heavy equipment
  • Ability to kneel, crouch, bend, walk, stand, and sit for long periods
  • Ability to stay motivated and the willingness to work independently
  • Being structured, detail-oriented, organized, reliable, and highly responsible
  • Excellent prioritization and time management skills and the ability to satisfy the needs of the clients
  • Ability to multitask and work under pressure in a dynamic, fast-paced environment
  • Being open to new ideas and the ability to work cohesively with an assistant or team
  • Excellent leadership and customer service skills

Photographer experience requirements

Although photography is an entry-level position, a candidate needs to have between two to four years of experience in their respective niches. They should also be conversant with various tools and equipment for photo production. Above all, they should be able to build an impressive portfolio in addition to expanding their network by working on a volunteer basis or taking on internships.

Photographer education and training requirements

An entry-level Photographer would need technical proficiency, which can be achieved through a vocational training program. Such basic courses cover techniques, processes and equipment for photography. It is also important that a Photographer learns essential business and marketing skills while pursuing the course. Entry-level positions in scientific photography, industrial photography, or photojournalism require a bachelor’s degree in photography, graphic design, visual arts, or any other related field.

Photographer salary expectations

According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for a Photographer is $16.30 per hour. This amount is not fixed and is likely to vary depending upon the Photographer’s experience level, the company itself and the location.

Photographer job description sample for similar positions

Other job description samples are available for your perusal if this is not quite what you’re looking for, including:

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Photographer job description FAQs

What are the various photography niches for a Photographer?

A Photographer may choose to work in a variety of niches, including fashion photography, industrial photography, portrait photography, aerial photography, landscape photography, sports photography, food photography, architectural photography, and travel photography.

What is a typical work environment for a Photographer?

The working conditions for a Photographer vary immensely. Whereas some Photographers only work five days a week with a total of 40 hours, others, such as News Photographers, tend to work longer, irregular hours. The latter also often have to be available to work on short notice. Some Photographers work on variable schedules or part-time. Although Portrait Photographers primarily work in their studios, they occasionally have to travel to take photographs on their clients’ locations. This could be in a private home, a company office, or a school.

Job Description Examples

Need help writing a job description for a specific role? Use these job description examples to create your next great job posting. Or if you’re ready to hire, post your job on Indeed.

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