A growing career


Dan Margulis
 

While we wait for the Bellagio entries, I'll share a trend that surprised me, somewhat.

Among the notes that came in with the Sunset on Beach submissions was one from a professional photographer who apologized for not having enough time to spend on the exercise because his work had been keeping him very busy for some time. I had thought that this must be a hard time to be a photographer, but it apparently isn't true.

Technological and market changes sometimes happen rapidly but often can be predicted. The Kiplinger companies came out with a list of 20 professions that are expected to lose jobs over the last few years. For each, they suggested an alternate career in a related field.
https://www.kiplinger.com/slideshow/business/t012-s001-worst-jobs-for-the-future-2018/index.html

For example, #20 on the list (talk about a dying business) is to be a professional embalmer. Evidently there is a marked trend toward cremation these days, and it is expected to continue. Alternate career: become a funeral director, although that in itself might be difficult in a time when large funerals are prohibited.

The one that affects us is somewhere in the top ten. I don't suppose any of us will be surprised that they don't recommend becoming a photofinisher/photo processor, the obvious reasoning being

Thanks to the popularity of social media and the near-universal adoption of smartphones with built-in cameras, it's become easy and increasingly common to take digital photos and share them instantly through cyberspace. A chief consequence of the shift to sharing selfies in real time: Drastically lower demand for print pictures and the people who operate the big machines that process them. Plus, when the whim arises, advancing technology has allowed people to print their own photos at home.

I thought that, with all these inferior images flying around, they might recommend retouching as an alternate career, in which case I'd scornfully remark that those who thought that Sunset on the Beach was a useless exercise should think again. But no, the alternate career suggested was,

Photographers are seeing a better career outlook than photo processors. Over the next decade, the profession is expected to grow 1.2% to 144,004 jobs by 2027. Median earnings are currently about $30,618 a year. Portrait and commercial photographers (who may work for corporations to create advertisements) are likely to experience the greatest demand.

Dan


Bruce Jamieson
 

Hey, Dan!

I also haven’t been able to participate because my face has been glued to my screen with work, amongst other responsibilities. 

On Feb 26, 2021, at 7:33 AM, Dan Margulis via groups.io <dmargulis@...> wrote:
Portrait and commercial photographers (who may work for corporations to create advertisements) are likely to experience the greatest demand.

The commercial photo company I’ve worked for (for 16 years) always had around 20-30 full-time employees across all departments. In the last two years we’ve grown to around 45-50! It’s unbelievable, the growth we’ve seen. On the other hand, the photo industry as a whole in my city appears to be suffering badly, which had begun well before the Covid era.

Bruce Jamieson 


Said Nuseibeh
 

Curious. As Bruce's message suggests... we need more data points.

Compare this report from 2+-years ago:

https://www.dpreview.com/news/7564938322/photographer-among-2018-worst-jobs-due-to-rise-of-freelancing-and-smartphones

Best,
-Said



On 2/26/21 at 4:33 AM, dmargulis=aol.com@groups.io (Dan Margulis via groups.io) wrote:

While we wait for the Bellagio entries, I'll share a trend that surprised me, somewhat.
<snip>

...But no, the alternate career suggested was,

Photographers are seeing a better career outlook than photo processors. Over the next decade, the profession is expected to grow 1.2% to 144,004 jobs by 2027. Median earnings are
currently about $30,618 a year. Portrait and commercial photographers (who may work for corporations to create advertisements) are likely to experience the greatest demand.


Dan


Randy Wright
 

I'm not sure how much credibility I would assign to a report that took until 2019 to figure out that photofinishing was in trouble.

Randy Wright


Henry Davis
 

I understand that the experience of the family photo album must change with the times.  But I must express that it’s not the same now in major ways - touching, handling and passing.  Passing a tablet around the table just doesn’t evince the same feelings for me.  I hope the new experience offers more to others than it does for me.

I love the old photo album, a real page-turner.

Henry Davis


On Feb 26, 2021, at 9:34 PM, Randy Wright via groups.io <wrandyr@...> wrote:

I'm not sure how much credibility I would assign to a report that took until 2019 to figure out that photofinishing was in trouble.

Randy Wright


Hector Davila
 

On 2/26/2021 8:47 PM, Henry Davis wrote:

I love the old photo album, a real page-turner.

Henry Davis

The smartphone is a photo album.

Everybody is walking around with
a photo album in their pocket.
(thousand of photos)

I never seen so many people just
looking at photos every minute, hour,
every day on their smartphone.

Eventually, everyone is going to want to transfer
all those photos to some other place...

photofinishing of the future.


Hector Davila


john c.
 

For most people, the future is called your own printer. With today's automated color management, it's no longer necessary to go to a lab to get pretty good and often great results. Extraordinary results still require an expert, but experts have less perceived value than in the past since home equipment does so much for so little. That leaves the cream of the crop all vying for the high end corporate work which naturally begets an over supply of high end talent for a small and diminishing market. The biggest labs have invested millions in grand format equipment to basically make signage and other display and industrial imaging products, not photofinishing. Retouching and restoration is quickly becoming automated through A.I. after having been outsourced to low wage foreign countries for years, so they aren't secure business models. Safe niche markets don't last long if they're profitable.

But it's not just our industry that's being hit. Artificial intelligence is replacing human workers of all types, not only drivers and factory workers, but now even doctors, lawyers and accountants stand to be replaced with systems that can do their jobs better, cheaper and faster. What we're seeing was the 20th century promise of a future where machines did the work while people enjoyed a life of leisure. Well we got both of those, but they forgot to include a way for most people to have incomes.

It's not all doom and gloom though. Stand up comics still have no competition from machines - yet! But I'm sure they're working on it. One day we'll all die laughing by algorithms.

castronovo

-----Original Message-----
From: Hector Davila
Sent: Saturday, February 27, 2021 12:53 AM
To: colortheory@groups.io
Subject: Re: [colortheory] A growing career

On 2/26/2021 8:47 PM, Henry Davis wrote:

I love the old photo album, a real page-turner.
Henry Davis

The smartphone is a photo album.

Everybody is walking around with
a photo album in their pocket.
(thousand of photos)

I never seen so many people just
looking at photos every minute, hour,
every day on their smartphone.

Eventually, everyone is going to want to transfer
all those photos to some other place...

photofinishing of the future.


Hector Davila


James Gray
 

The new experience does a lot for me.  I do not know what Henry's experience and background are.  So I will tell you what mine is.  I am purely an amateur at both photography and post-processing.  I acquired a Kodak Brownie in 1958.  I acquired my first SLR in about 1968.  I have a collection of over 30,000 slides.  I think I have sold about $500 worth of images, but the last sale was over 10 years ago.  I am retired and have no need to try to make any money off my photography.  I do enter competitions and juried shows.  I will also mention that I was a beta reader for two of Dan's books.

As another side note, a few years ago my wife was looking at websites recommending how to pack light for travel.  There were a couple of questions on one website.  The first question was "Do you really need your camera?"  As a follow up the question was. "How many times do you look at your photos from your vacations?"  Our answer to the last question is hundreds of times.  There are so many other ways to view and enjoy photos that were captured digitally than passing a tablet around.  We run a continuous slide show on a spare monitor near our dinette table.  It is attached to our laptop.  We do enjoy looking at the photos from our trips over and over.  Each of our other computers is set up to show photos when they switch to "screen saver".  Before the pandemic, there were many times we showed a collection of our photos on our TV screen.  In addition, I have made several photo books from places like Blurb and Shutterfly.  I like those better than old photo albums.  Back in film days, I would occasionally make 11X14 prints that cost about $30 each.  Now I can make an 11X14 print from my digital files for about $2.50.  I have some of those framed and hanging in our house.  Some are hanging up without being framed.  So for me, the digital age provides so many other ways to view and share images than in film days.  I have not bothered to mention the "photo album" that people carry around in their pockets most of the time.

James Gray

On Fri, Feb 26, 2021 at 9:47 PM Henry Davis <davishr@...> wrote:
I understand that the experience of the family photo album must change with the times.  But I must express that it’s not the same now in major ways - touching, handling and passing.  Passing a tablet around the table just doesn’t evince the same feelings for me.  I hope the new experience offers more to others than it does for me.

I love the old photo album, a real page-turner.

Henry Davis




Doug Schafer
 

Our home photo album is a digital display that changes images every 15 seconds...turns off if nobody around, wakes up if you walk by, sleep mode at night. We simply manage a folder of images shared by the family. It couldn't be easier and we don't have to drag out a heavy book to see thousands of images. Yet we see them every day (randomly). Can remote control to hold, fast forward, etc. The digital age has some significant advantages. We can add/subtract images  or change view order via cell phone, tablet, or PC. Don't even need to be home to change or view.  OTOH I have many many boxes of slides and negatives from 40 years to review and scan to add to the digital collection of memories.
Doug Schafer


Henry Davis
 

I come from a commercial printing background from the 70’s, not photography.

Maybe my point would have been clearer had I mentioned my favorite tactile photo album experiences. Those would be the old family albums, many of them with brittle bindings and B&W photos trying to remain on the paper pages, corners stuck down with those little triangles. Even repairing them is a treat, everybody gathered around handling our personal history.

I’m not anti-digital it’s just that digital doesn’t offer me the same experience. I have adapted. I even enjoyed days past when the slide projector came on the scene.

Henry Davis

On Feb 27, 2021, at 2:05 PM, James Gray <James@gray.org> wrote:
<Snip>

The new experience does a lot for me. I do not know what Henry's experience and background are . . .
. . . I have not bothered to mention the "photo album" that people carry around in their pockets most of the time.

James Gray