At First, The Method And The Tools
Photography is just about two centuries old. It was invented in 1800 by Thomas Wedgewood. For thousands of years, Man has inscribed or painted the images he has seen or dreamt about in order to record them for posterity. Records of cave paintings with basic colors in the caverns of Altamira, Spain, and elsewhere have borne witness to the innate Human urge to record facts, and create something different from study of his records. Paintings and sculptures have held centre stage in our imagination since then, with each generation creating innovations in colors and painting materials to produce ever more realism on canvas. The great European Masters took painting to a new peak, until the Age of Renaissance produced realistic yet dreamlike masterpieces the like of which has never been seen again. But Wedgewood’s extraordinary experiments with capturing and recording light through transparent lenses on photosensitive surfaces and “fixing” these images completely revolutionized the high Art of Reproduction forever. Born on the 14th May, 1771, to Joseph Wedgewood, the master potter, Thomas was the Pioneer who created the first known equipment to first concentrate a real image through a transparent (glass) lens mounted on a fully light proof box with a light sensitive (silver nitrate) backing plate to record still black and white images of Reality. This was then “fixed” to produce “negatives”, through which concentrated beams of light now produced the final, “positive” image. Rapid strides in the technology by extraordinary engineers and follow-up inventors soon had this basic clumsy equipment, lit by magnesium flares and producing only black and white “photos”, to traverse to the color photography stage, and now finally to the Digital Camera stage, where unbelievable features like autofocus , face recognition, preset modes, program timers with intelligent light condition monitoring, all in a small portable package, are available to the modern enthusiast who is interested in Photography Careers.
In general careers in photography can be divided into five categories. At first, and deriving from earlier professions of painters, are the Portrait and Fashion Photographers. Next are the Photo Journalists or News Photographers who provide our daily diet of visual news and also satisfy our hunger for headlines and gossip. Following closely are the Commercial Photographers who dominate advertising both on Paper and Online. Then there is the Scientific Photographer, which is an esoteric branch of Photography for which specialized training is necessary. Technicians handling X-ray Machines and Laser based equipments, CAT Scans, MRI Machines, and Electron Microscopes and so on, fall this category. Last but not the least is the Freelance Photographer. These are the main avenues for Photography Careers, but newer areas are being developed everyday in this highly profitable line.