What Do Photographers Do?

Working as a professional photographer can be an incredibly exciting way to earn a living, often involving sports, fashion and wildlife photography through to wedding photography, street photography and photojournalism.

Professional photographers are masters of light, angles and being in the right place at the right time. They have extensive knowledge of a range of technical equipment, as well as a thorough understanding of photo design. The art of photo imaging (i.e. editing and manipulating photos), is often a major skill set that needs to be acquired now more than ever, which involves working with an ever-increasing collection of high-tech software.

Pathways to Professional Photography

Many photographers start out working as assistants or apprenticing with experienced professionals, as this can be an excellent way to get an up-close look at what the industry is all about. As with any creative profession, regular practice will also play a significant role in developing your skills, which is why many budding professionals take their camera with them everywhere they go.

While natural talent and instincts can certainly play a big part in being a successful photographer, choosing to learn photography in an educational setting can tilt the playing field to your advantage. For this reason, most professionals have completed their fair share of dedicated photography courses, with 22% having attained a Diploma or Advanced Diploma and 25% holding a Bachelor degree or higher.

Professional Photography in Australia

There are currently over 13,000 professional photographers working in Australia, earning an average salary of $58,181. Photographers are employed by many different mediums, including newspapers, magazines, digital media companies, police departments, schools and hospitals; and, an increasing number are now choosing to advertise their trade on a freelance basis.

Photographers can find work anywhere there’s something to photograph, and the internet has made it easy to sell photos all over the world; however, most of Australia’s photography employment is found in Victoria (37%), Queensland (30%) and New South Wales (20%).

Photography Courses

Whether you’re dreaming of a career as a professional photographer or just want to take better photos for yourself, you are sure to find a photography course to suit your needs.


Certificate level courses focus on the basics of good photography and provide a great way to improve your skills while getting a sense of what the industry is all about. If you’d like to delve deeper into this creative profession our higher-level certificates will certainly help; for example, a Certificate IV in Design with a focus on photography can lead to roles such as studio assistant, assistant photographer or digital image technician. Alternatively, some courses offer teachings more accurate to photography, such as the popular Certificate IV in Photography and Photo Imaging. Courses such as these offer the ability to develop not only your skills in using the programs, technology and equipment used throughout the industry, but also help you develop your skills relating to consulting and dealing with clients, creating a folio and how to showcase your work.


For those interested in becoming a fully-fledged professional photographer, we’ve got you covered too, as we also advertise a range of elite-level photography courses. Here you’ll learn everything from the art of angles to the laws of lighting and how to edit, develop and display your photos and market those fantastic images of yours. A Diploma of Photography, for example, is a fantastic way to delve deeper into the industry and hone your natural talents into even better ones. A diploma will cover areas including capturing, digital imaging, colour management and exhibiting your work.

Bachelor Degree

If you want to truly master the art and hone your natural talents, consider a bachelor degree qualification in photography. This can be done in a number of ways. Some photographers choose to undertake a Bachelor of Arts (Photography), or alternatively, a Bachelor of Fine Arts or Creative Arts majoring in photography. These highly specialised photography courses allow students to fully immerse themselves in the industry, with many studio projects and briefs to follow being a large part of this level qualification. You can also have the opportunity to use a range of different techniques, materials and processes to explore and experiment with. These courses can typically take three years to complete, with some even offering placement options to truly give you a taste of what your future career will bring.

Whether you’re looking for beginner photography courses in Sydney, a professional-level photography course in Brisbane or an online photography course with a focus on photo editing, there’s an option to suit everyone.

The Future of Photography

Photography has changed a lot since the first photo was taken back in 1814, mainly thanks to the rise of digital photography. Furthermore, the emergence of smartphones has meant that more photos are being taken now than ever before, with drones and GoPro cameras opening an even greater world of possibilities.

One thing that hasn’t changed, however, is that there’s still an art to taking a great photo and those with the skills to do so remain in high demand. In fact, jobs for professional photographers in Australia are expected to rise to 14,300 in the next three years, with around 9,000 new job openings within the next 5 years.

If you’re ready to take your photography skills to the next level, you’ll find everything right here, regardless of whether you’re looking for short photography workshops, focused certificates and diplomas, or comprehensive professional-grade degrees.

So, what are you waiting for? Find your course, grab your camera and get snapping!