Career and Education Opportunities for Camera Operators in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for camera operators in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area. The national trend for camera operators sees this job pool growing by about 9.2% over the next eight years. In general, camera operators operate television, video, or motion picture camera to photograph images or scenes for various purposes, such as TV broadcasts, advertising, or motion pictures.
Camera operators earn about $18 hourly or $38,680 yearly on average in Pennsylvania and about $20 per hour or $41,670 per year on average nationally. Compared with people working in the overall category of Media Technical, people working as camera operators in Pennsylvania earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Media Technical nationally. Camera operators work in a variety of jobs, including: production assistant, news cameraman, and director of photography.
There are 156 schools of higher education in the Philadelphia area, including eight within twenty-five miles of Philadelphia where you can get a degree to start your career as a camera operator. Given that the most common education level for camera operators is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a camera operator if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Camera Operator
In general, camera operators operate television, video, or motion picture camera to photograph images or scenes for various purposes, such as TV broadcasts, advertising, or motion pictures.
Camera operators use cameras in any of several different camera mounts such as stationary, track-mounted, or crane-mounted. They also operate zoom lenses, changing images according to given requirements and rehearsal instructions. Finally, camera operators operate television or motion picture cameras to record scenes for television broadcasts or motion pictures.
Every day, camera operators are expected to be able to understand events and object details at a distance. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they evaluate problems as they arise.
It is important for camera operators to adjust positions and controls of cameras and related apparatus to change focus and lighting. They are often called upon to gather and edit raw footage on location to send to television affiliates for broadcast, using electronic news-gathering or film-production equipment. They also observe sets or locations for potential problems and to establish filming and lighting requirements. They are sometimes expected to test and maintain apparatus to insure proper working condition. Somewhat less frequently, camera operators are also expected to view films to deal with problems of exposure control, subject and camera movement, changes in subject distance, and related variables.
Camera operators sometimes are asked to label and record contents of exposed film, and note details on report forms. They also have to be able to download exposed film for shipment to processing labs and read charts and compute ratios to establish variables such as lighting and camera distances. And finally, they sometimes have to ready slates that describe the scenes being filmed.
Like many other jobs, camera operators must be reliable and be thorough and dependable.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Philadelphia include:
- Audio Visual Technician. Set up or set up and operate audio and video equipment including microphones, sound speakers, video screens, projectors, video monitors, recording equipment, connecting wires and cables, sound and mixing boards, and related electronic equipment for concerts, sports events, meetings and conventions, presentations, and news conferences. May also set up and operate associated spotlights and other custom lighting systems.
- Broadcast Technician. Set up, operate, and maintain the electronic equipment used to transmit radio and television programs. Control audio equipment to regulate volume level and quality of sound during radio and television broadcasts. Operate radio transmitter to broadcast radio and television programs.
- Choreographer. Create and teach dance. May direct and stage presentations.
- Director. Interpret script, conduct rehearsals, and direct activities of cast and technical crew for stage, motion pictures, or radio programs.
- Film or Videotape Editor. Edit motion picture soundtracks, film, and video.
- Graphic Designer. Design or create graphics to meet specific commercial or promotional needs, such as packaging, displays, or logos. May use a variety of mediums to achieve artistic or decorative effects.
- Music Composer. Write and transcribe musical scores.
- Photographer. Photograph persons, subjects, or other commercial products. May develop negatives and produce finished prints.
- 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.
- Sound Engineer. Operate machines and equipment to record, synchronize, or reproduce music, voices, or sound effects in sporting arenas, theater productions, or movie and video productions.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Camera Operator Training
The University of the Arts - Philadelphia, PA
The University of the Arts, 320 S Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19102-4901. The University of the Arts is a small university located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,405 students and an admission rate of 45%. The University of the Arts has a bachelor's degree program in Cinematography and Film/Video Production which graduated fifteen students in 2008.
Camden County College - Blackwood, NJ
Camden County College, College Drive, Blackwood, NJ 08012. Camden County College is a large college located in Blackwood, New Jersey. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 14,951 students. Camden County College has an associate's degree program in Cinematography and Film/Video Production which graduated two students in 2008.
Mercer County Community College - West Windsor, NJ
Mercer County Community College, 1200 Old Trenton Rd, West Windsor, NJ 08550-3407. Mercer County Community College is a medium sized college located in West Windsor, New Jersey. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 9,120 students. Mercer County Community College has an associate's degree program in Radio and Television Broadcasting Technology/Technician which graduated twenty students in 2008.
Wilmington University - New Castle, DE
Wilmington University, 320 Dupont Hwy, New Castle, DE 19720. Wilmington University is a medium sized university located in New Castle, Delaware. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 8,980 students. Wilmington University has a bachelor's degree program in Cinematography and Film/Video Production which graduated ten students in 2008.
Bucks County Community College - Newtown, PA
Bucks County Community College, 275 Swamp Rd, Newtown, PA 18940-4106. Bucks County Community College is a large college located in Newtown, Pennsylvania. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,260 students. Bucks County Community College has a less than one year program in Radio and Television Broadcasting Technology/Technician.
Rowan University - Glassboro, NJ
Rowan University, 201 Mullica Hill Road, Glassboro, NJ 08028. Rowan University is a large university located in Glassboro, New Jersey. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 10,271 students and an admission rate of 57%. Rowan University has a bachelor's degree program in Radio and Television Broadcasting Technology/Technician which graduated ninety-eight students in 2008.
Drexel University - Philadelphia, PA
Drexel University, 3141 Chestnut St, Philadelphia, PA 19104. Drexel University is a large university located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 21,754 students and an admission rate of 68%. Drexel University has a bachelor's degree program in Cinematography and Film/Video Production which graduated twenty-seven students in 2008.
The Art Institute of Philadelphia - Philadelphia, PA
The Art Institute of Philadelphia, 1622 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103-5198. The Art Institute of Philadelphia is a small school located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,545 students and an admission rate of 46%. The Art Institute of Philadelphia has an associate's degree and a bachelor's degree program in Cinematography and Film/Video Production which graduated twenty-seven and twenty-nine students respectively in 2008.
Certified Legal Video Specialist: The use of video in the legal environment is growing fast.
For more information, see the National Court Reporters Association website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Philadelphia is located in Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania. It has a population of over 1,447,395, which has shrunk by 4.6% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Philadelphia, 102, is near the national average. New single-family homes in Philadelphia cost $212,900 on average, which is far greater than the state average. In 2008, five hundred forty-five new homes were constructed in Philadelphia, down from five hundred ninety-one the previous year.
The top three industries for women in Philadelphia are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, educational services, and health care. The average travel time to work is about 32 minutes. More than 17.9% of Philadelphia residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.5%, is lower than the state average.
The percentage of Philadelphia residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 53.4%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Boulevard Church, Mount Herman Church and Saint Michael Mission Center are all churches located in Philadelphia. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the American Baptist Churches in the USA and the Muslim Estimate.
Philadelphia is home to the Five Points and the Academy Gardens as well as Durham Park and Cloverly Park. Shopping malls in the area include Roosevelt Mall, Andorra Shopping Center and Red Lion Shopping Center. Visitors to Philadelphia can choose from Comfort Inn, Concordia Worldwide Hotel Reservations and Embassy Suites for temporary stays in the area.