Many people think that summer is traditionally a slow time for photo studios. However, this is not the case. In fact, many professional studios see summer as a huge money maker, especially with the surge in senior photos, family reunions and other seasonal events to document.
If you are an avid shutterbug looking for summer employment, check out chain photo studios for opportunities. Sears, Kmart and the Picture People accept applications year-round for staff photographers. If you land a summer gig at one of these chain studios, you can earn a decent paycheck taking portraits while adding fresh images to your portfolio.
For those just breaking into the business, you will need to know the basics of photo composition, lighting, and have outstanding people skills. The latter is necessary as you will be meeting and working with a cross section of photo subjects each day. If you have little to no experience working with strangers, consider getting a job at a smaller photo studio. Smaller companies tend to give new hires more personalized guidance and are often more tolerant of mistakes made by newbies.
Paid apprenticeships and internships are also an option for amateur photographers looking for summer jobs. Unfortunately, these paid assistant gigs are hard to come by. What’s more, even if you land a coveted spot, don’t expect to make a ton of cash from it. Rather, these opportunities are valued more for the experience they offer. For example, if you land a job assisting a well-respected professional photographer you will likely be allowed unprecedented hands-on lessons, plus you can test the waters of the industry to see if being a pro shooter is really what you want to do for the rest of your life. Just keep in mind that when you apply for an apprenticeship you will still need to show off your portfolio and provide details of your past experiences as a photographer.