As we have discussed there are many avenues open to a professional photographer. Some actually graduate from the world of business into corporate photography. Corporate photography has many facets; it is used for publicity, in the form of advertisements; for public relations, for historical purposes, and for in-house brochures. Some corporate photographers can work for the same company for many years. They cover special events in the companies’ history, as well as being as in some cases an important aspect of industrial history. The history of the steamboat, the transition from the Agrarian to the Industrial revolution has all been captured on film.
In the 1940’s Ansel Adam’s was probably the best-known American photographer. He captured images of the enforced internment of American citizen’s of Japanese descent at the Manzanar War Relocation Center in California. These prints record history in another way as the Photographic Division of the Library of Congress show digital scans of his negatives as well as his prints; this allows a student to study his dark room techniques.
The art of action photography is a specialised art that presents unique challenges, requiring both technical skills in capturing a moving image, as well as knowledge of the activity you are photographing. A sense of timing is vital as well as having the ability to pre-focus. Some types of photography has peak moments, such as the hour before dusk, action photography has peak milliseconds! Your sense of timing has to be well developed to know when this is going to be, because you have to shoot a millisecond before that to give the camera time to actually shoot. This is where knowledge of the activity is very helpful to allow you to anticipate the peak second. However, this is a very specialised aspect of the photography business, your techniques can be improved. Sport photography is easier than moving wildlife, or breaking news stories, as it is more predictable in its outcome. Common sense is fairly important with your positioning, you need an interesting backdrop, as well as a place that allows you to make best use of ambient light, be it also to keep yourself in a position of safety. The Pulitzer Prize for photography is no use to anyone when they are dead. Often these skills can be refined at amateur sporting events, where you do not need a press pass.
Another specialist type of photography is underwater photography, partly because you also need to be a qualified diver and partly because the equipment is specialised. It is possible to take shots underwater, with a normal camera, but amphibious cameras, get better results, unfortunately they are expensive, with a lot of things to learn and the possibility of very expensive repairs. As with action photography this is best left to the specialist and it is not a feasible option, unless you work in this media for the majority of your time. The sea can be a dangerous medium to work in, and it presents special challenges such as night, and wreck photography, as well as drift photography, all of which challenge both your diving skills as well as your technical skills.