Becoming a professional snapper


Picture-6.jpgYou want to be a hot-shot snapper, and turn your hobby into a job, do you? It’s a tough business to get into, but with a bit of knowledge, a little bit of skill and a lot of patience, it’s entirely possible to get photos in print in magazines and newspapers, and get paid for it!

Editors receive many photos every day and very few ever get published. You can save them and yourself some time by following the simple tips collected below. 


First of all you need to assess if the picture is of national or local importance. An armed robbery with bodies lying all over the place and crashed police cars etc. would be of national importance but a photograph of a bus having smashed through somebody’s garden wall will probably only be of interest to your local paper. If in any doubt phone the picture desk and ask if they would be interested in the image.

(from Pixalo)

Employers want people with strong imaginations and technical skills in photography. The most qualified individuals have degrees in photography or journalism. Portrait and freelance photographers must have technical aptitude as achieved through some kind of training.

(from Career

Being a photographer can mean many different things. Anyone who picks up a camera and clicks the shutter is a photographer of sorts. More seriously, for most of us a photographer is someone who engages a considerable proportion of their life in photography. Most of the time people want to know how they can make a career out of something that at the moment is just an interest.

Many of us dream of becoming rich and famous, of having our work shown in great art galleries, splashed across the leading fashion magazines and in large on the newspaper front pages. While it is always a possibility that photography will make us a celebrity, reality tends to be more mundane.

(from the excellent, in-depth How to become a photographer, from

As digital cameras become more and more popular, many readers and photographers are starting to submit their images to magazines for possible publications in digital format. It’s only very recently that many magazines have actually started to accept digital images. One of the main reasons for this is not for the lack of well composed and news worth images, but for the fact that digital cameras in the past didn’t have enough resolution and level of detail to reproduce well in a magazine. In fact, many excellent digital pictures have been rejected because of this simple reason. In addition, how digital pictures were sent to the magazine by photographers was another reason their pictures didn’t appear in print. Poorly printed digital images, being supplied in the wrong format and those sent in by email were the main culprits.

(from How to submit digital pictures by Ephotozine)

If you’re interested in a lot more info, How to become a professional photographer by Danny Steyn.

Finally, if you use DeviantArt, add Chris Weeks to your watch list. The man’s a prolific photographer (and also the guy pictured in the illustration picture of this post), and frequently writes about his work on his DA blog. You may also want to have a read of A Day in the Life of a Professional Photographer, over on Pixalo.

Good luck in your new career :)

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