Develop your photography skills and repertoire, and your ability to present your work for maximum impact to the public, employers, clients, publishers, galleries and others. Gain first-hand experience in photography, presentation, and publishing to prepare you to work in any aspect of photography. This course provides an excellent and diverse basis on which to begin and build a career. Receive valuable feedback on your photographs from tutors who are expert and experienced photographers.

Become a Professional Photographer

Work in photography or a related industry such as marketing, publishing or the media.


This course is made up of 15 modules, listed below. (Note: You may substitute a small number of these modules for others offered by this school -but any substitutions must be approved by an academic officer.)
More details can be seen by searching for courses on this website.


Introduction to Photography http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=284


  • Discuss the principles those underpins photography and examine the evolution into digital technologies.
  • Explain how photographic images are able to be captured on film. This lesson will also explain how photographic images are able to be captured by digital cameras.
  • Provide you with a firm understanding of how you can work at improving your capabilities with respect to taking photographs. It provides a framework, upon which you will base your work in future lessons.
  • Determine appropriate application for a range of common items of photographic equipment and develop an understanding of how digital images can be transferred effectively from a digital camera
  • Explain how photographic film is developed.
  • Describe the process by which photographic film may be enlarged. Also explain techniques that can be used to process digital photographs within a computer to achieve improved or changed images.
  • Work more effectively with light when taking photographs.
  • To identify and avoid common faults in photographs

Photographic Technology http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=286


  • Describe in technical terms, how an image forms when a photograph is taken.
  • Explain the nature of light and how this relates to the finished photographic product.
  • Describe how sensitivity of a photo sensitive surface and its development affect the photographic image.
  • Explain sensitivity relates to development affect the photographic image.
  • Explain the composition and manipulation of white and coloured light to create different photographic images.
  • Discuss the chemical process that occurs in producing a colour film photograph.
  • Explain how the photographic image may be manipulated by using optical filters or other camera attachments, other than lenses.
  • Explain how the photographic image may be manipulated by using lenses.

Photographic Practice http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=285


  • Compose photographs in a way that matches a predetermined aim.
  • Explain a variety of ways to take better photographs of people.
  • Explain a variety of ways to take better photographs of landscapes or other natural subjects.
  • Differentiate between appropriate use of colour and black and white photography.
  • Create varied visual affects through the use of special techniques.
  • Explain a variety of ways to take better illustrative photographs.
  • Explain a variety of ways to take better photographs for use in print or electronic media.
  • Determine the nature and scope of business opportunities in photography.

Digital Photography http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=282

  • Describe the scope and nature of digital photography

  • Select appropriate equipment for use in digital photography
  • Explain how technology enables digital images to be captured.
  • Compare different digital cameras and select an appropriate camera for a particular application.
  • Control the effects created in a digital photograph which you take.
  • Describe techniques which can be used for digitally capturing images from film photographs, or graphics.
  • Explain how digital images can be transferred effectively from a camera (or scanner) onto another device (eg. a computer, video monitor, television set, etc).
  • Describe techniques that can be used to process digital photographs within a computer to achieve improved or changed images.
  • Explain how digital photos can be manipulated and changed to produce altered images.
  • Discuss the scope and nature of special effects that can be created with digital photographs.
  • Identify how and where digital photography can effectively be used.

Travel Photography http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=287

  • Identify the scope of travel photography, and the resources required to take travel photos
  • Explain how you can work at improving your capabilities with respect to taking travel photographs.
  • Apply camera techniques including framing, positioning, timing and borrowed landscapes to create various effects.
  • Photograph natural areas to make best use of their texture, or even give them human qualities.
  • Photograph streetscapes to create different moods, or capture elements of your choice.
  • Photograph indoor scenes making best use of available and artificial lighting.
  • Create a series of travel photographs which contain a single common feature that differentiates them from other photographs, and in doing so, provides an indication that they are likely to have been taken by the same person.


Landscape Photography http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=288


  • To know and understand the equipment and materials used in photography.
  • Create different affects photographing the same landscape.
  • Compose a well-balanced photo.
  • Utilise form to create a three dimensional affect.
  • Develop your own photographic style.

Photographing People http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=289


  • Identify resources that could improve your ability to photograph people, examining the principles of photography and also exploring the issues related to digital photography.
  • Discuss the preparation for a photo shoot by exploring the different equipment and materials needed for a successful shoot. Also examine lighting a subject within a studio setting and explores digital photography issues
  • Discuss techniques used for taking photos of people
  • Improve your ability to shoot better portraiture photographs.
  • Explain the issues and applications concerned with wedding photography.
  • Take better candid photos of people.
  • Describe how to take appropriate nude photos for different situations.
  • Describe how to take action photos of people.
  • Describe how to take better glamour and fashion photos.
  • Compile a folio of people photography.

Photographic Lighting http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=625


  • Discuss the scope and nature of lighting as relevant to photography.
  • Describe how different light sources will affect different images in varying ways.
  • Describe how different filters can be used to create different lighting effects.
  • Identify the differences between different types of light meters.
  • Describe the range of equipment which can be used to help achieve more desirable light conditions for photography.
  • Explain contrast and how to compensate for imperfect light conditions.
  • Explain how to use tone to create the desired final image.
  • Distinguish between utilisation of light in a studio and on location.To view detailed outlines of each of the modules click on the modules above, one by one.

Photoshop http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=546


  • Open digital files using Photoshop
  • Resize images and save them in multiple file formats
  • Create original graphics using the Photoshop tools
  • Manipulate individual elements of a graphic composition or image
  • Improve the quality of an image (clean it up) by applying modifications
  • Apply interesting filters and effects to images or compositions
  • Prepare your files for the web, print or email

Publishing I http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=405


  • Define the scope and nature of publishing today.
  • Describe some of the processes that are commonly used to perform work tasks in the publishing industry.
  • Identify a viable process to follow for desktop publishing of a small publication for printing on paper.
  • Identify a viable process to follow for desktop publishing of a small publication in an electronic format (eg. E book or web site).
  • Evaluate different types of illustration for ease and relevance for use in different publishing situations.
  • Determine photography appropriate for inclusion in a publication.
  • Determine research required appropriate to the needs of a publication.
  • Determine a marketing strategy appropriate to the needs of a publication.
  • Identify the impact of legal and ethical issues on a publisher.
  • Plan the production and marketing of a publication.

Photojournalism I Participate in the production of a student publication


Portfolio Project Prepare a portfolio of your photographic work


Business Studies http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=260


  • Select appropriate procedures for the establishment of a small business.
  • Select appropriate procedures for the management of a small business.
  • Develop procedures for communicating with suppliers and customers of a small business.
  • Develop procedures for addressing problems in a small business.
  • Plan the management of staff in a small business.
  • Develop strategies for managing production in a small business or department within a larger organisation.
  • Perform different financial management tasks used in small business or department within a larger organisation.
  • Evaluate marketing techniques used in business.

Research Project I http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=612


  • Develop your ability to collect, collate and interpret data and prepare reports in ways relevant to the work environment;
  • Monitor and evaluate one’s own work in order to develop a responsible attitude to workplace performance and quality assurance;
  • Develop awareness of areas where there is a valid need for research which are relevant to area of study;
  • Explain research methods, including experimental techniques, commonly used in the learner's area of study;
  • Understand of the basic statistical methods used for research;
  • Locate, collect and evaluate information for a specific research purpose;
  • Prepare a research report in a format which conforms to normal industry procedures.

Workshops I http://www.acs.edu.au/courses/product.aspx?id=651
There are 3 lessons in this module as follows:

1. Workplace Tools, Equipment and Materials: Identifying and describing the operation of tools and equipment used in the workplace; routine maintenance of tools and equipment; identifying and comparing materials used in the workplace; using different materials to perform workplace tasks.

2. Workplace Skills: Determining key practical skills in the workplace; identifying and comparing commonly-performed workplace tasks; determining acceptable standards for workplace tasks; implementing techniques for improving workplace efficiency.

3. Workplace Safety: Identifying health and safety risks in the workplace; complying with industry OH&S standards; developing safety guidelines for handling dangerous items.



In this course, among other things, you will learn to:

  • Use a camera - film or digital – correctly to take good photographs
  • Use different photographic equipment, and use it correctly to identify and correct problems when they occur
  • Take photographs that capture and convey particular impressions about a place, its people, and their culture
  • Develop a more than basic understanding of the effects that can be achieved by manipulating composition, lighting, and equipment, and how to achieve them
  • Produce photographs and desired effects using digital technology (digital or conventional photography combined with computer software and hardware for processing the photographs)
  • Use different materials and equipment to achieve specific effects in landscape photos
  • Set up a photo session – inside or outside a studio, to create different effects and convey the desired impression when photographing individuals or groups of people
  • Use and manipulate light (natural or artificial) to create different photographic affects
  • create and manipulate images and artwork compositions for the web, email and print, using Adobe Photoshop, the software used commonly in business, publishing and the graphics industry
  • Develop your understanding of publishing practices and concerns for self publishing, electronic and print publishing
  • Develop essential skills for managing a small business
  • This course provides an excellent start for anyone considering self publishing or seeking employment in publishing. It is equally relevant to electronic or print publishing
  • Gain hands-on experience in illustrating a publication with photographic images, and working cooperatively in a publication team, through a guided student publication project.
  • Plan and conduct research into the current status of an aspect of the photography industry, and complete a descriptive report based on that research.
  • identify, select and apply knowledge and skills to appropriate perform workplace tasks in the workplace, and adapt them to photographic practice
  • Prepare a portfolio of your photographic work in a way that reflects high standards of professionalism, and represents the range and quality of your experience and abilities.



What is Involved with a Career in Photography?



The industry is a dynamic one, but one that is also in the midst of upheaval as people move away from film photography and into digital photography.

Developments in digital technology have had a huge impact on the photographic industry causing many large and well established employers to reduce job numbers. At the same time, new technologies have offered small businesses and freelance photographers an opportunity to compete more strongly than ever before with larger and more established businesses and professionals.



Photography offers a wide range of employment prospects and career paths.

Photography offers lots of opportunity, but it is a rapidly changing industry, and to succeed, you need to stay up to date, and have the capacity to not only adapt quickly to new technology, but also be innovative in the way you apply it and the way you move your career forward.

Photographers are employed in many different types of jobs, including:

  • Photographic Salesperson
  • Photo artist
  • Wedding Photographer
  • Portrait Photographer
  • Photo Library Manager
  • Advertising Studio Photographer
  • In House Magazine or News Photographer
  • Photography Teacher/Trainer
  • Military Photographer
  • Book Illustrator


Risks and challenges

Photography can be competitive, and work opportunities may be sporadic. Whilst there is good money to be made as a photographer, a freelance photographer may find it difficult to earn a stable income. Likewise an employed photographer may be poorly paid.

Successful freelance photographers can, however, make a lucrative income.


How to become a photographer

Most people study a photography course, but this could range between a vocational short course, to a Bachelor or Masters degree in photography. Most photographers will then go on to accumulate a significant amount of experience through practice, working in a camera/photography shop, working as a photography assistant, taking photos for friends and family, etc. When they have had a significant amount of experience they will put together a portfolio, to either gain paid employment, or to gain contracts as a freelancer.

People may specialise in a range of different areas, and this will guide their next career move. For example, someone wanting to get into wedding photography may do a specialist course, then gain work experience, or work as a photography assistant for a wedding photographer, before branching out and starting their own business.


Other related jobs

  • Photography jobs as above
  • Journalist
  • Photojournalism
  • Editor
  • Graphic Designer
  • Website Developer
  • Writer


Course Duration: 1500 hours