Do you have a creative brain along with a sense of wanderlust? Well, travel photography could be an ideal career path for you. It’s one of the most upcoming unconventional careers these days. Travel photography offers a wide range of career opportunities that can take you and your camera heading off for endless adventures around the world. In this post, we will look at the top career paths that can help you to combine your passion for travel and photography.
6 Top Careers in Travel Photography
By Rosana Beechum
Travel photography offers a wide range of potential career options, where you can head off for countless worldwide adventures around the world. Whether you want to capture photos of happy families at resorts or onboard cruise ships or follow a path as a photojournalist, there are several ways to combine your passions for both photography and travel if you have the right amount of talent and determination.
There are employment opportunities available, but turning your dream into a reality by starting your own business as a travel photographer is often the best way forward. The sky really is the limit, and there’s such a growing need for photographic content these days that you’ll never be short of things to take pictures for and companies and individuals to sell your snaps to.
To get started, you’ll need to:
- Put together an online portfolio of your work
- Find a niche or specialty
- Learn how to market your work and perfect your pitch
- Be flexible; you could be working away from home at any given moment
- Invest in high-quality camera equipment
So, once you’ve got all the basics covered, it’s time to consider which travel photography job is the best option for you.
Do you enjoy writing as much as you do taking photographs? If you want to be able to take full control of your career, decide where to visit next, and release all your work to the world without having to wait for them to be approved, travel blogging could be the ideal choice for you.
And, travel blogging isn’t always about writing and photographing where you’ve visited, and talking about the best attractions, although you can certainly do that if you like. You can turn your travel blog into a publication that focuses on almost any niche that you want, such as environmental images and articles highlighting climate change issues, or you might even want to publish political pieces and cover destinations affected by war.
Freelance Travel Photographer
Going freelance as a travel photographer is another great option if you’d like to retain most of the control regarding where you work and what you photograph, but it does require a lot of patience, determination, and organization. You’ll be essentially running your own business, so you will need to dedicate the time to finding clients and work, and marketing your business alongside producing high-quality content and keeping a track of your finances.
Since so many brands, publications, and businesses are always in need of photo content, you can work for multiple clients at a time with endless opportunities to make money. You’ll need a strong portfolio to market your business and land those top clients; check out Format – this site allows you to easily build an interesting, professional photography portfolio that you can immediately start sharing with your potential clients.
Cruise Ship Photographer
If you would rather find an employer than run your own business, consider applying for a photographer job on a cruise ship. You’ll be visiting a number of different ports around the world, but there’s a lot of time spent on the cruise ship itself, so you’ll need to make sure that you can handle often repetitive working conditions and small staff cabins. Typically, you’ll be capturing portraits of guests onboard the ship, at dinners and events, taking part in activities, and more. Most of the work is focused around what happens on the ship itself, but if you’re lucky, you may also be able to enjoy some adventures off the boat when it docks. The size of the ship can differ; you could work on a luxury yacht or a massive cruise liner.
Photojournalists are some of the most well-respected professionals in the world of travel photography, and while the position is quite similar to working as a freelance journalist, you’ll be more likely to get commissioned work from clients or publications. Typically, you will be taking photographs that relate to the coverage of an issue, event, subject, or location that helps to provide more information and tell a story for a magazine, newspaper, online publication, or NGO.
Unsurprisingly, many photojournalists are also trained journalists who can provide in-depth captions for their images or even write a supporting story. It’s a very competitive market, so you’ll want to gain a lot of experience before you approach editors or apply for jobs. You might want to consider internships, or starting your own website or blog where you can publish your own stories or photo features. It can also be helpful to study journalism and find a niche or a certain issue that you are passionate about.
Destination Wedding Photographer
Photographing destination weddings is a great opportunity to travel to some of the loveliest places in the world and spend your time producing unforgettable, precious images for couples on their big day. As a destination wedding photographer, you could work in employment for an overseas wedding planning company or venue, but more often than not, wedding photographers are self-employed giving them the freedom to choose which weddings they want to work at.
Typically, you will be booked by a couple to photograph their wedding day; they might be traveling to get married somewhere close to where you are based, or you could travel abroad with them to photograph their big day. Many destination weddings take place in some gorgeous locations and this job could see you traveling to France, Italy, the Greek Islands, Thailand, and many more beautiful countries. If you’re equally passionate about both wedding and landscape photography, this is the perfect gig that allows you to combine the two.
Whether they’re a beach, island, ski, or theme park resort, many resorts will have photographer positions available. Typically, photographers are hired during the high season, making it a great way to work your way around the world in a variety of different places as you can find work at different resorts during the different seasons. Since the peak seasons tend to differ at different places around the world, it’s entirely possible to find work as a resort photographer all year round. Plus, you will enjoy a reliable, fixed income and most resort photographers are offered discounted staff accommodation, which can feel like you’re on vacation.
Most of the time, the positions will be quite casual and you’ll be required to put in a few hours of work each day photographing people enjoying activities around the resort or taking part in events. You might also be booked for family portraits and work in the photography store on-site. While it’s probably not the best job to go for if you want to earn a lot of money in a short amount of time, it can be a huge amount of fun and a fantastic way to gain travel photography experience and improve your skills while getting to explore a gorgeous destination at the same time.
Combining your love of travel and photography is easier than you might think, with plenty of positions to consider. Whether you want to work as an employee for a large travel company, cruise ship or resort or start your own business taking photographs around the world, the opportunities are endless for anybody with the drive to succeed.
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