Photographic Technology (Associate Degree)

Employer demand for photography comes from a mix of fields. Corporations require commercial photographers to develop compelling advertisements, and wedding and portrait photographers are needed as well. Some may find themselves working in a studio; others outdoors or on location. Photographers need both technical skills and creativity to produce effective photographs. Earning a photographic technology associate's degree from Brightwood College could give you the career training and education you need.

The Photography Curriculum

Brightwood College offers instruction in various specialty areas leading to an Associate of Applied Science in Photographic Technology. The photography curriculum is designed to provide you with varied levels of hands-on training required for success in today's competitive job market. You have the flexibility to study one specific field of photography, or to diversify by choosing general applied photography.

As the field of photography changes, so do the required coursework and skills mastered at Brightwood College. Equipment and software utilized in the photography programs are continually reviewed to assure graduates have the skills needed to be successful.

Commercial Photography Specialization

Learn about the exciting world of commercial photography at Brightwood College. If you choose this area of specialization, you will receive training in camera and lighting techniques for use in studio and on-location photography. Commercial photographers typically photograph products, facilities, people, or other subjects for editorial, advertising or promotional purposes.

Program Objective

This area of specialization will train you in the use of small-, medium- and large-format cameras using digital and film as required. Other courses will train you in Adobe Photoshop® and computer basics, plus advanced camera techniques and best business practices. You will also have an opportunity to develop your portfolio, which can aid you in seeking entry-level employment as a commercial photographer.

Career Opportunities

Upon successful completion of this specialty, you will receive an Associate of Applied Science in Photographic Technology from Brightwood College and can search for entry-level positions in the field of commercial photography. Two to five years of work experience is recommended prior to opening your own studio. You may seek a position as a commercial photographer in the following businesses:

  • Advertising agencies
  • Commercial photography studios
  • Magazines such as fashion, interior design, travel and food
  • Newspapers
  • Public relations agencies

General Applied Photography Specialization

As you pursue your associate's degree in photographic technology at Brightwood College, you will choose an area of specialization. The general applied photography area of specialization offers you training in the basic fundamentals of photography, including camera skills, lighting, photo design and computer programs such as Adobe Photoshop®. This specialty also provides general training in both portrait photography and commercial photography.

Program Objective

The general applied photography area of specialization at Brightwood College can provide you with the training and skills that are necessary for entry-level positions in the field of photography. You also will develop a portfolio of your work, including both portrait and commercial photography, which could be useful in securing employment.

Career Opportunities

As a graduate of Brightwood College, you could have the skills and knowledge required to seek entry-level employment in full-service studios or photography labs. With a specialty in general applied photography, you could also have the flexibility to seek employment in commercial studios and portrait studios.

Portrait Photography Specialization

Photography services are requested to photograph coming-of-age events, school pictures, graduations, weddings, and more. At Brightwood College, you could learn more about the rewarding world of portrait photography and gain the technical understanding of photography that could help you find success.

Program Objectives

In this specialty, portrait techniques in camera operation, processing and finishing are emphasized, as well as merchandising and business practices. Coursework concentrates on current professional trends in studio, on-location and candid wedding applications. There is also an opportunity to develop your portfolio as you approach graduation. Showing the work that you have done during your studies at Brightwood College could help you find entry-level employment as a portrait photographer.

Career Opportunities

When you graduate with your associate's degree in photographic technology with a specialty in portrait photography, you may apply for an entry-level position in a portrait studio. Many photographers are self-employed, but two to five years of work experience is recommended prior to opening your own studio.

The photography program is available at the following Brightwood College locations:


Gainful Employment Disclosures

Access gainful employment information including program length, tuition costs, financing options, graduation rates and median debt load of students who have completed the program:


Campus Catalogs

For details about specific program outcomes and offerings, please review the Academic Programs section of your course catalog.

For additional information on tuition and fees, please review the tuition information section of your campus course catalog under Financial Information > Tuition and Fees.