What are transferable skills and why do you need them? What does it mean to be employable today and in the future?...
- Produce digital or print images from photographs using specialist equipment
- You'll need to combine technical with creative skills in some roles
- Progress into supervisory roles, set up your own business or become a photographer
As a photographic technician, you'll be responsible for helping photographers produce their photographic content, producing images from digital files.
- Using computerised equipment to adjust and improve images
- Printing customers' image files onto photographic paper, canvas or other materials
- Quality checking prints and sending out by post or online
- Taking payments from customers
- Helping the photographer during photo shoots
- Checking and maintaining equipment
- Selling camera equipment and giving advice to customers
You could work at a store or in a creative studio, and your working environment may be physically demanding.
For this role, you'll need thoroughness and attention to detail, the ability to work on your own as well as with others, patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations, flexibility and openness to change, knowledge of computer operating systems, customer service skills, and excellent verbal communication skills.
You could do a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree in photography or digital imaging.
For some digital imaging jobs, you'll need experience of desktop publishing packages like Photoshop, Photoshop Lightroom, QuarkXpress, Illustrator or InDesign.
Direct application is possible to work as a photographic technician. For work in high street mini-labs, you'll need basic computer skills and an interest in photography, and some employers might prefer you to have GCSEs.
To work in print finishing, you'll usually need practical skills in woodworking or picture framing.
In professional labs, archive stores and picture libraries, you'll usually need formal qualifications in photography that you can obtain at college, such as a Level 2 Diploma in Photography and Photo Imaging, a Level 3 Certificate in Art and Design (photography option), or a Level 3 Diploma in Photography.
You could get into this job through a photo imaging or photographic assistant advanced apprenticeship.
With experience, you could move into management. You could also choose to start your own photographic business or open a franchise to run a mini-lab.