Develop your photography career
The BFA in Photography at BHSU offers many opportunities to students interested in photojournalism, commercial photography, or fine art photography. The photography emphasis offers both basic and advanced black-and-white photography, color photography, digital imaging, photojournalism, and contemporary issues classes. For photography majors, other courses include basic and advanced studio lighting, the history of photography, and alternative silver and digital processes.
The photography program at BHSU is also acclaimed for:
- AWARD WINNING AND INTERNATIONALLY RECOGNIZED FACULTY
- Steve Babbitt: Fine art, landscape, law, darkroom printing & techniques
- Jerry Rawlings: Advertising, studio, commercial, photojournalism
- Skott Chandler: Digital, Video, Photoshop & Lightroom, Inkjet printing
- THE FINEST PHOTOGRAPHY DARKROOM FACILITIES IN THE REGION
- STATE OF THE ART 3,000 SQ. FT. STUDIO WITH CYCLORAMA
- PHOTOGRAPHY CERTIFICATE OFFERED
BHSU has one of the finest darkroom and digital imaging facilities in South Dakota and the surrounding region; with three black and white and color labs, a film developing area, and an imaging lab, the facilities provided are desirable to any serious Photography major. The digital imaging lab is complete with multiple Mac computers, scanners, and various large format and desktop printing stations. Students also have access to a 3,000+ square foot commercial studio with a cyclorama and a new alternative silver and digital printing lab. Students can further their exposure to the photography industry through:
- THE LATEST IN TECHNOLOGY... Drone photography is taking the photographic world by storm. BHSU now offers a course in drone photography with the latest in technology. In this course, not only will you learn how to properly use and control a drone, but also about the rules, regulations, and laws surrounding the use of drones.
- CUTTING EDGE CLASSES... In the ever-changing photographic industry, DSLR videography has become a must know. The BHSU Bachelor of Fine Arts photography program now offers MCOM/Art 462: Advanced Photography Projects. In this course, students learn the art of film and video creation, editing, file management, and color grading.
- EXCELLENT INTERNSHIP OPPORTUNITIES... Students in the photography program have interned with worldwide companies such as Untamed Photography, the Minnesota Twins, Healing Haiti, Walt Disney World, and H.H. Brown Footwear. BHSU also offers local opportunities for internships with companies such as the Rapid City Rush, the Dahl Arts Center, and the Historic Black Hills Studios.
Careers in Photography
As with most professions, a degree in Photography can open the door to opportunity. In the field of photography, degree holders are often considered for jobs as commercial photographers, photojournalists, digital photo editors, videographers, and even educators. Here are descriptions of the most common photography careers.
Photojournalists photograph newsworthy people, places, and sporting, political, and community events for newspapers, journals, magazines, or television. Some work as salaried staff employees, while others own their own businesses and are known as freelance photographers. Freelance news photographers may license the use of their photographs through stock photo agencies or contracts with other types of clients.
Fine Art Photographer
Fine art photographers sell work to individuals, galleries, interior designers, architects, libraries, community centers, churches, banks, hotels, government and elsewhere on a freelance basis or by commission. Fine art photographers enjoy creative freedom not generally allowed to freelance or staff photographers, but they must also be extremely self-motivated.
Commercial/Industrial photographers capture images used for books, advertisements, catalogs, and wide media. They take pictures of a wide variety of objects and subjects, including models, landscapes, buildings, and merchandise. An industrial photographer might take pictures of machinery, workers, and other products that can be useful to workers in analyzing, public relations, and business strategies. Industrial photography takes place at the site of its use.
Studio/Portrait photographers often work in their own studios, taking pictures of groups or individuals. They often specialize in particular events, such as weddings, religious ceremonies, or school photographs. They also may work on location. Some portrait photographers may own their own business, which requires them to arrange for advertising, schedule appointments, mount and frame pictures, purchase supplies, keep records, bill customers, and possibly hire and train new employees.
Freelance photographers are hired out on a job-by-job basis, which is a nice perk for those who prefer to make their own schedule or to work on a variety of projects. Freelancers do many of the same jobs as staff photographers, without the benefit of a consistent paycheck. Some freelancers specialize in areas such as portraits, aerial photography by plane, weddings or fashion.