If you are like many, you have an interest in developing the background and skills necessary to enter the field of photography as career. And what a great career it can be. There is nothing more gratifying than creating a powerful image with your camera and a keen eye. Of course, in order to achieve your goal it is important that you get the right photographic education along with effective coaching and mentoring. With the right education, lots of hard work, and many hours of practice you will soon have the title of professional photographer.
Just like any school you will need to do your research to make sure that the photography school you select will best meet your individual needs. This article is intended to provide you several of the key areas that you should take into consideration as you begin to research good photography schools. After all it is your time and money so you owe it to yourself to make a well educated selection.
In choosing a photography school you should start by looking at the big picture. The selection of a photography school must be aligned with your specific career goals. As with any business field photography presents many opportunities in a wide range of categories. For example, you may have an interest in portrait photography, product advertising, or sports photography. At this point you may be focused more on the general aspects of photography and if so that is okay. But, if you have an area of interest it is worth your investment in time to determine the areas of specialization your short list of photography schools may have to offer. It would also be beneficial if your school of choice provides courses in general business in addition to the photography classes. This will aid you as you move from student to professional status.
I am sure you already know this but I will say it any way. Professional photography is more than point-and-shoot method for making a living. It requires an attention to detail and a wide range of skills including mathematics, business management, marketing and more. So make sure that the photography school you select can provide you the knowledge you need in the area of general business education too. Since many photographers eventually go into business on their own you will find these to be extremely valuable survival skills that will lend to your success.
It is always wise to inquire about the size of the class as well as the ratio of students to teacher. To many people in photography class can really be a hindrance toward proper learning. And it will also prohibit the instructor from providing effective hands-on supervision to each of the students.
Another skill area that should be considered is in the area of computers and you should determine if the photography school of choice provides learning in this area as well. A good photography school needs to have courses on basic computer use as well as more advance courses for those who have an interest in expanding their knowledge of digital photography as well as specialty software used for creating a digital darkroom. Since the field of photography is a very competitive it is imperative that you gain education and knowledge in this area as well.
Lastly, keep in mind that any education will have a price tag associated with it. So unless you just happen to have all of your photography education funding in hand it is worth while to determine if the schools provide scholarships or other forms of financial assistance for their students. Also keep in mind that you will more than likely need to invest in some of your own photography equipment. So I would recommend that you ask for a listing of equipment that the photography school offers to their students as well as a listing of equipment that you need to buy. This will aid you in determining the total cost of your education.
Hopefully, these recommendations will help you build your list of investigation questions so that you can make a wise and well educated decision. Choosing the right school is just as important as having a good view of where you want to go. And the right school is the best way to help you get there.
To Your Success as a Professional Photographer!