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Photography Careers | Open College of the Arts | Photography Qualifications
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Photography Careers

Looking to pursue a career in photography?

There are so many options to choose from when it comes to a career in photography and your work could take you around the world. Photography is needed in practically every industry, so there’s so much scope to specialise in something that you love.

Many photographers work in advertising, media, fashion, sports, weddings, and more! Photography is a fantastic creative skill that employers in a range of industries will appreciate. One of the wonderful things about photography is that it’s a great complementary skill for a wide variety of other career paths – like design, marketing, PR, and many others. You may even decide to go into teaching with your photography experience.

Becoming an established photographer takes time and practice, but with over 40,000 working in photo imaging in the UK there is opportunity and scope. Freelance is a common route, and to get there you could start out as a photographer’s assistant; Photoassist is a specialist site with advice, and job listings.

Prospects has a guide on what you can do with a Photography degree. Creative Choices have case studies to show you what you could do. The British Journal of Photography host jobs on their site, as do the Arts Council.

As a student you can become a member of the Association of Photographers and the British Institute of Professional Photography. Both will help increase your exposure, grow your networks, and provide services to help you launch as a freelance photographer.

Regardless of the path you choose, having a formal qualification can really enhance your photography prospects. So, it’s a good idea to think about what qualifications you need to be a photography teacher – if that’s the path you’re interested in – or the kind of photography qualifications that’ll help jump start your photography career.

What qualifications do you need for photography?

While there are no specific photography qualifications required to pursue a career in photography, there are certainly photography qualifications that will help you develop the knowledge and skills that can help you become a successful photographer.

Whether you work freelance, within a photography studio, as an in-house photographer, or as a photography teacher, you’ll need to build a strong portfolio of work to help sell yourself to employers and clients.

Photography qualifications, such as Foundation Photography, BA Photography and BA Creative Arts, are a fantastic place to start to improve your knowledge, develop your skills, and build your portfolio. All these OCA courses are open access, meaning you can apply regardless of your previous experience or qualifications, so you can apply today.

We also offer two professionally accredited photography courses – both our Photography as Language and Investigating Place with Psychogeography courses are ran in partnership with the Royal Photographic Society. They’re ideal courses if you’re looking to advance your photography career. If you’re looking for professional photography qualifications, find out more about our CPD-accredited university short courses.

Learn about OCA’s CPD-accredited university short courses in photography

Learn about OCA's foundation and degree-level photography courses
Photo by Fidel Fernando on Unsplash Open Day