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Perhaps you are interested in pursuing a career as a professional photographer, but are not certain if you have what it takes. Have you been an amateur shutterbug all your life? If so, maybe it is time to turn your love of taking pictures into a career in professional photography. With a love of photography and some technical instruction from an accredited art school, you can turn your passion into a profession. We make it easy to find the right program for you. Our database contains over 2,800 schools, complete with profiles, statistics, and program information! See our simple School Sorter below to get started. Create a customized list of your best matches. Make informed decisions about your future using the free educational resources on FYAS.


Professional photographers enjoy a creative lifestyle and may utilize their talents in a number of ways. As a professional photographer, you may work in one or more of the following fields:

  • Wedding photography
  • Portrait and studio photography
  • Fashion photography
  • Photo-journalism
  • Advertising photography
  • Magazine photography
  • Event photography
  • Digital photo art
  • Fine art photography
  • Landscape photography
  • Architectural photography
  • Medical photography

As you can see, the options are many and diverse! If you are interested in pursuing a career in professional photography, your best bet is to look for art schools or photography schools that can provide you with the technical instruction that you need.

You may be wondering if attending art school is a pre-requisite for a career in professional photography. A few short years ago, it seemed nearly anyone with a camera could parlay their skills into a career. This is no longer true. The technical aspect of photography has exploded with the digital photography boom. Not only do you need to learn all the artistic angles of setting up and shooting a photograph, you also need to learn how to produce that photography in its best possible light on a computer.

With digital cameras, anyone can shoot a photo,but not everyone can shoot a good photo, and not everyone knows how to turn what they have shot into a professional-quality picture. Digital ohotography enhancement could take years to learn on your own. Doesn't it make more sense to attend a concentrated program taught by professionals, so that you can learn all you need to know in a relatively short amount of time?

Fortunately, there are many reputable art schools teaching photography today. During your course of study, you will not only learn all of the technical aspects of professional photography, you will also study art history, the history of photography, color theory, and composition. Most art schools and photography colleges also include courses in business practice, in order to get you up and running in your new career as soon as possible.

You will also receive assistance in creating your own portfolio to show to prospective customers. Most art schools also aid their graduates in job placement and career counseling. After all, it is to their benefit to help their graduates find jobs, as that is the point of the programs.

Begin your journey toward a professional photography career by researching top photography schools using our simple search engine. A degree from an accredited photography school is the best way to qualify for entry-level positions within this exciting and growing career field.

Is Photography School Right for You?

Do you have an eye for details? Do you feel that your creativity is restrained by a 9 to 5 job? If so, photography school may be the right choice for you.

Photography has become more than just a hobby. It is now a full-fledged,. rewarding career of capturing, processing, and manipulating images. A young enthusiast would need to have some amount of technical skill combined with a creative flair. Going to photography college will teach you how to unleash your creativity behind the lens.

Career Options in Photography

Professional photography offers a variety of career options. Graduates may be employed in a corporate office,a media center, or work as part of a professional team. However, if you would rather be your own boss and have flexible working conditions, you can choose to be a freelance photographer.

With the growing popularity of visual communications and digital technology, employers are looking for talented photographers for skills in the following areas:

  • Still photographic applications
  • Wild life applications
  • Travel photography
  • Advertisement applications
  • Sport photography
  • News photography
  • Industrial photography for catalogues and corporate presentation applications
  • Scientific and educational photography
  • Fine art applications

Degree in Photography

Similar to any other profession, the professional photography industry is a highly competitive career field. It's not enough for photographers to be talented, you will also need the proper training. With the advent of digital technology, it has become relatively easy for an amateur to learn the ropes. However, professional training is required to reach industry standards, and most magazines, photography companies, newspapers, and corporate employers require all applicants to have a degree in photography.

Photography degrees and certificates are offered at most art schools and are structured to train students to apply their basic creative instinct and imagination in a productive way. These courses are designed to bring out your hidden talents through systematic training and practice.

Several high quality art schools offer degrees in photography with specialization in digital photo art. These courses differ in duration and depth. An easy way to research these programs and request more information is through an online art directory.

Photography Courses

Most photography schools offer a course that starts with the basics, unless you have opted for an advanced level of study. The basics will give you a firm foundation on which to build your experience. These courses will teach students the techniques and concepts of professional photography, so you can then experiment on your own. By working with professional photographers, you will be able to learn from their experience. They will teach you how to combine artistic talent with technical skills to produce a quality photograph.

Basic courses expose students to areas such as:

  • Brief history of photography
  • Photo composition and types
  • Camera use
  • Exposure controls
  • Photo processing
  • Creative controls for depth and motion
  • Lighting and flash use
  • Practical applications
  • Types of cameras and their applications
  • Technological development in photography
  • Exposure to career options
  • Projects and competitions for skill development

Many photography schools also offer specialized, career-oriented courses to train graduates in a particular field or niche area. For example, the rising popularity of digital photography has paved the way for digital photo art.

These specialized areas can be broadly classified as:

  • Professional photography
  • Visual communication
  • Visual journalism
  • Video production

Photography as a Career

If you want to pursue photography as a career, you have two broad options:

  1. Full-time photographer
  2. Freelance photographer

Full-Time Photographer

So what do you need to do to become a full-time photographer? It starts with developing a great professional portfolio. A portfolio should feature your best work in a very organized and professional manner. You'll want to create a unique portfolio based on the position you’re interviewing for so that it contains photographs that are relevant to the job. For example, if you are applying for a still photographer's vacancy, then your portfolio should contain photographs of close-up shots, covering every detail with sufficient depth and clarity. Photography college graduates will have developed a portfolio of representative work during undergraduate courses. Most degree programs require the completion of a professional portfolio before graduation.

However, if you wish to pursue a career in digital photo art you should prepare your portfolio in digital form and place it in a prominent website for wider coverage.

Photographers are recruited on the basis of their portfolio. Fresh recruits are often selected by business houses as trainees and placed under experienced photographers. The training period gives recruits an opportunity to refine their skills and learn on-the-job techniques.

Freelance Photographers

To be a freelance photographer, you need to have sufficient expertise and experience in the chosen area. A good list of professional contacts will also be helpful. Professional photographers who have been in the business for a while branch out on their own to freelance on their own terms. This works well because they have developed the skills and experience to handle their own clients independently. It also offers more freedom when it comes to the method of working and fixing pay rates. To become a successful freelance photographer, most photography degree programs require students complete courses on marketing, advertising, and business courses related to entrepreneurship or management.





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Northern Virginia Community College Architecture | CAD, Drafting | Graphic Design | Interior Design | Performing Arts | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Annandale, VA 46619 Suburb Public
Community College of the Air Force Advertising | Film, Video, TV | Photography Two-year school Montgomery, AL N/A City Public
Carson - Newman College Advertising | Film, Video, TV | Fine Art, Drawing, Painting | Graphic Design | Performing Arts | Photography Four-year school Jefferson City, TN 2150 Suburb Private
Solano Community College Advertising | Audio Production | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Film, Video, TV | Interior Design | Performing Arts | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Fairfield, CA 12222 Town/Rural Public
Prescott College Audio Production | Film, Video, TV | Fine Art, Drawing, Painting | Interior Design | Landscape Architecture | Performing Arts | Photography Four-year school Prescott, AZ 1119 City Private
Ferris State University Advertising | Animation | Architecture | Arts Management | Audio Production | CAD, Drafting | Film, Video, TV | Fine Art, Drawing, Painting | Game Design | Graphic Design | Illustration | Interior Design | Photography | Visual Effects Four-year school Big Rapids, MI 13865 Town/Rural Public
Memphis College of Art Animation | Film, Video, TV | Game Design | Graphic Design | Photography | Visual Effects Four-year school Memphis, TN 451 City Private
University of Massachusetts - Dartmouth Advertising | Animation | Fine Art, Drawing, Painting | Graphic Design | Illustration | Photography | Visual Effects | Web Design & New Media Four-year school North Dartmouth, MA 9302 Suburb Public
Virginia Commonwealth University Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Fine Art, Drawing, Painting | Graphic Design | Illustration | Interior Design | Performing Arts | Photography Four-year school Richmond, VA 32172 City Public
Minneapolis Community and Technical College Advertising | Animation | Architecture | Audio Production | CAD, Drafting | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Film, Video, TV | Graphic Design | Performing Arts | Photography | Visual Effects | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Minneapolis, MN 10618 City Public
County College of Morris Audio Production | CAD, Drafting | Fine Art, Drawing, Painting | Graphic Design | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Randolph, NJ 8798 Suburb Public
Mid Florida Tech Architecture | CAD, Drafting | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Orlando, FL 2042 Suburb Public
Academy of Art University Advertising | Animation | Architecture | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Film, Video, TV | Fine Art, Drawing, Painting | Game Design | Graphic Design | Illustration | Interior Design | Photography | Visual Effects Four-year school San Francisco, CA 15413 City Private
Ridgewater College Audio Production | CAD, Drafting | Graphic Design | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Willmar, MN 4318 Town/Rural Public
University of Central Oklahoma Advertising | Arts Management | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Graphic Design | Interior Design | Performing Arts | Photography Four-year school Edmond, OK 16092 Suburb Public
Harrington College of Design Graphic Design | Interior Design | Photography Four-year school Chicago, IL 1067 City Private
Miami Ad School - Miami Beach Advertising | Photography Two-year school Miami Beach, FL 181 City Private
Mt Hood Community College Architecture | Audio Production | Film, Video, TV | Graphic Design | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Gresham, OR 8897 Suburb Public
Rochester Community and Technical College Advertising | Arts Management | Audio Production | CAD, Drafting | Photography Two-year school Rochester, MN 6269 City Public
Long Island University - C W Post Campus Advertising | Animation | Audio Production | Film, Video, TV | Fine Art, Drawing, Painting | Performing Arts | Photography | Visual Effects | Web Design & New Media Four-year school Brookville, NY 11749 Suburb Private
Harford Community College CAD, Drafting | Graphic Design | Interior Design | Performing Arts | Photography Two-year school Bel Air, MD 6656 Town/Rural Public
Fresno City College Advertising | Architecture | Audio Production | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Film, Video, TV | Graphic Design | Performing Arts | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Fresno, CA 25511 City Public
College of the Canyons Animation | Architecture | Audio Production | CAD, Drafting | Film, Video, TV | Game Design | Graphic Design | Interior Design | Performing Arts | Photography | Visual Effects Two-year school Santa Clarita, CA 21575 Suburb Public
New Mexico State University - Dona Ana Advertising | Animation | Architecture | CAD, Drafting | Film, Video, TV | Game Design | Photography | Visual Effects | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Las Cruces, NM 9021 Suburb Public
The Art Institute of Charleston Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Graphic Design | Interior Design | Photography | Web Design & New Media Four-year school Charleston, SC 686 City Private
The Art Institute of Phoenix Advertising | Animation | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Film, Video, TV | Game Design | Graphic Design | Interior Design | Photography | Visual Effects | Web Design & New Media Four-year school Phoenix, AZ 1243 City Private
Central Michigan University Advertising | Architecture | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Film, Video, TV | Graphic Design | Interior Design | Performing Arts | Photography | Web Design & New Media Four-year school Mount Pleasant, MI 27247 Town/Rural Public
University of Central Missouri Advertising | Audio Production | CAD, Drafting | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Film, Video, TV | Interior Design | Performing Arts | Photography Four-year school Warrensburg, MO 11191 Town/Rural Public
Spokane Falls Community College Advertising | Audio Production | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Interior Design | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Spokane, WA 9555 Town/Rural Public
Tompkins Cortland Community College Advertising | Audio Production | Film, Video, TV | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Dryden, NY 3699 Town/Rural Public
CUNY LaGuardia Community College Audio Production | Photography Two-year school Long Island City, NY 17028 City Public
Indiana Wesleyan University Advertising | Animation | Fine Art, Drawing, Painting | Illustration | Interior Design | Performing Arts | Photography | Visual Effects Four-year school Marion, IN 15345 Town/Rural Private
Foothill College Animation | Audio Production | Film, Video, TV | Game Design | Graphic Design | Performing Arts | Photography | Visual Effects | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Los Altos Hills, CA 18293 Suburb Public
Tyler Junior College Advertising | CAD, Drafting | Graphic Design | Performing Arts | Photography Two-year school Tyler, TX 11045 City Public
Waubonsee Community College Architecture | Audio Production | CAD, Drafting | Film, Video, TV | Graphic Design | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Sugar Grove, IL 10532 Town/Rural Public
Colorado Mountain College Graphic Design | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Glenwood Springs, CO 5741 Town/Rural Public
Arizona State University Architecture | Audio Production | Film, Video, TV | Graphic Design | Interior Design | Landscape Architecture | Performing Arts | Photography Four-year school Tempe, AZ 68064 City Public
Oklahoma School of Photography Graphic Design | Photography Less than two years Moore, OK 37 Suburb Private
The Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale Advertising | Animation | Audio Production | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Film, Video, TV | Game Design | Graphic Design | Illustration | Interior Design | Photography | Visual Effects | Web Design & New Media Four-year school Fort Lauderdale, FL 3217 City Private
Community College of Philadelphia Architecture | Audio Production | CAD, Drafting | Performing Arts | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Philadelphia, PA 19048 City Public
Texas State University - San Marcos Advertising | Audio Production | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Film, Video, TV | Graphic Design | Interior Design | Performing Arts | Photography Four-year school San Marcos, TX 30803 Town/Rural Public
Art Academy of Cincinnati Fine Art, Drawing, Painting | Graphic Design | Illustration | Photography | Web Design & New Media Four-year school Cincinnati, OH 187 City Private
Pasadena City College Advertising | Animation | Audio Production | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Film, Video, TV | Game Design | Graphic Design | Performing Arts | Photography | Visual Effects Two-year school Pasadena, CA 26453 City Public
Mott Community College Architecture | CAD, Drafting | Graphic Design | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Flint, MI 12151 City Public
Cosumnes River College Advertising | Architecture | Audio Production | CAD, Drafting | Film, Video, TV | Graphic Design | Performing Arts | Photography | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Sacramento, CA 15946 City Public
The Art Center Design College - Tucson Advertising | Animation | Fine Art, Drawing, Painting | Game Design | Graphic Design | Illustration | Interior Design | Landscape Architecture | Photography | Visual Effects Four-year school Tucson, AZ 279 City Private
Bellevue College Animation | Film, Video, TV | Graphic Design | Interior Design | Photography | Visual Effects | Web Design & New Media Four-year school Bellevue, WA 14010 City Public
College of DuPage Advertising | Animation | Architecture | Audio Production | CAD, Drafting | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Film, Video, TV | Game Design | Graphic Design | Interior Design | Photography | Visual Effects | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Glen Ellyn, IL 27083 Suburb Public
Nossi College of Art Advertising | Film, Video, TV | Graphic Design | Illustration | Photography Four-year school Madison, TN 445 City Private
Milwaukee Area Technical College Advertising | Animation | Architecture | Audio Production | CAD, Drafting | Fashion Design, Marketing, Merchandising | Film, Video, TV | Game Design | Graphic Design | Interior Design | Performing Arts | Photography | Visual Effects | Web Design & New Media Two-year school Milwaukee, WI 20215 City Public

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