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Clicking the camera shutter button and jotting down a few key words is not enough to break into the world of photojournalism; having a keen eye for detail, meeting people, writing well, and knowing what equipment to use are all useful skills one will need to develop to break into the photojournalism field. A photographer or writer will need to develop his or her skills before trying to get jobs as a photojournalist, and it may be helpful to take classes that will teach such skills. It may also help to apprentice with a photographer and/or writer to help hone skills.
The best practice someone can get into if he or she wants to get into photojournalism is the habit of carrying the camera everywhere. The photojournalist will need to be ready to document events as they happen, so it is important to be out and about, documenting people and things. Driving around may get the person in the right area of town, but he or she will still need to get out of the car and walk around to meet people, document events intimately, and get the best story. Photojournalism sometimes means getting lucky, but in most instances, the photojournalist will need to be savvy enough to be in the right place at the right time.
Breaking into the photojournalism field can be difficult for a new photographer, and it will be important for that person to get exposure. Sending one's work to the editors of the local newspapers is a great way to make an impression, and while it may not happen quickly, the editors may eventually call on the photojournalist to cover a story. Starting a website to showcase one's work is another way to get noticed; if this is too complex a task, the photojournalist can start a blog. This will allow him or her to showcase not only his or her photography skills, but also his or her writing talents.
Another great way to develop photojournalism skills is to research other photojournalists. Read the newspapers and magazines regularly and take note of the composition of shots, the subject matter, and the captions that go with those shots. Read feature articles regularly to get a sense of the writer's style as well as the proper format for writing such pieces. When covering a job, take note of how other photographers are covering the event and think about what works well and what doesn't. Try those methods out and modify them to suit your needs.
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