Career and Education Opportunities for Photographers in Anchorage, Alaska
Anchorage, Alaska provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for photographers. There are currently 130 working photographers in Alaska; this should grow by 9% to about 140 working photographers in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for photographers, which sees this job pool growing by about 11.5% over the next eight years. In general, photographers photograph persons, subjects, or other commercial products.
Income for photographers is about $17 per hour or $36,360 annually on average in Alaska. Nationally, their income is about $14 hourly or $29,440 yearly. Earnings for photographers are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Media Technical in Alaska and not quite as good as general Media Technical category earnings nationally. People working as photographers can fill a number of jobs, such as: ophthalmic photographer, finish photographer, and advertising photographer.
There are four schools of higher education in the Anchorage area, including one within twenty-five miles of Anchorage where you can get a degree to start your career as a photographer. Photographers usually hold a high school diploma or GED, so you can expect to spend only a short time training to become a photographer if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Photographer
In general, photographers photograph persons, subjects, or other commercial products. They also may develop negatives and produce finished prints.
Photographers decide on desired images and picture composition, selecting and adjusting subjects, equipment, and lighting to produce desired effects. They also develop artificial light, using flashes and reflectors. Equally important, photographers have to test equipment before use to insure that it is in good working order. They are often called upon to perform maintenance tasks needed to keep equipment working properly. They are expected to use traditional or digital cameras, along with a variety of equipment such as tripods and flash attachments. Finally, photographers manipulate and enhance scanned or digital images to generate desired effects, using computers and specialized software.
Every day, photographers are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to visualize how things come together and can be organized. It is also important that they understand events and object details at a distance.
It is important for photographers to decide on and assemble equipment and required background properties, in line with subjects and conditions. They are often called upon to perform general office duties such as scheduling appointments and ordering supplies. They also adjust apertures and camera focus on the basis of a combination of factors such as lighting and film speed. They are sometimes expected to decide on project goals and equipment needs by studying assignments and consulting with clients or advertising staff. Somewhat less frequently, photographers are also expected to produce computer-readable, digital images from film, using flatbed scanners and photofinishing laboratories.
Photographers sometimes are asked to direct efforts of staff who are setting up photographic equipment. and design visual aids and charts for use in lectures or to present evidence in court. And finally, they sometimes have to test equipment before use to insure that it is in good working order.
Like many other jobs, photographers must be reliable and believe in cooperation and coordination.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Anchorage include:
- Musician. Play one or more musical instruments in recital, in accompaniment, or as members of an orchestra, band, or other musical group.
- Set and Exhibit Designer. Design special exhibits and movie, television, and theater sets. May study scripts, confer with directors, and conduct research to determine appropriate architectural styles.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Photographer Training
University of Alaska Anchorage - Anchorage, AK
University of Alaska Anchorage, 3211 Providence Drive, Anchorage, AK 99508. University of Alaska Anchorage is a large university located in Anchorage, Alaska. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 16,649 students and an admission rate of 68%. University of Alaska Anchorage has a bachelor's degree program in Art/Art Studies which graduated nineteen students in 2008.
Certified Forensic Video Technician: Forensic video analysis is an important science that can have a significant impact on the investigation process.
For more information, see the Law Enforcement and Emergency Services Video Association website.
Certified Photographic Consultant: PMA awards the Certified Photographic Consultant (CPC) designation to individuals who successfully meet rigorous testing on photo and digital imaging technologies.
For more information, see the Photo Marketing Association International website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Anchorage, Alaska
Anchorage is located in Anchorage Municipality County, Alaska. It has a population of over 279,243, which has grown by 7.3% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Anchorage, 89, is well below the national average.
The top three industries for women in Anchorage are health care, educational services, and public administration. For men, it is construction, public administration, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 20 minutes. More than 28.9% of Anchorage residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.2%, is higher than the state average.
Anchorage is home to the Chugach and the Black Bear Campground as well as Baxter Bog Park and Alaska Railroad Power Reserve. Visitors to Anchorage can choose from Courtyard Anchorage, Creekwood Inn and The Voyager Hotel for temporary stays in the area.