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Thread: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

  1. #1
    Member lamergod's Avatar
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    Default Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    I was surfing ecareers.sg after my school introduced this site, and sure enough, the first thing I checked was photographer. They stated that the average wages of a photographer is 1,300 SGD.

    Let's take it as he/she is the sole bread winner of the family of 5

    That got me thinking, wouldn't that mean they would have problem feeding their family let alone invest in equipments and studio rental. They probably might even have a bit of a problem paying Singtel or Starhub to get internet and surf clubsnap. So is it really true that the market is so tough?

    I've had my fair share of shoulder rubbing with professional freelancers as well as employees of Straits Times on the side-lines of football games and they all seem to have cars and iPhones.

    So is it really a case where ecareers.sg got this wrong or that somehow photographers manage to find money on the floor and buy their equipments while feeding their family.

    What say you?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    i saw advertisements for full time employed pg which pays 2-3k per month.

    1.3 k is too low.

  3. #3
    Deregistered allenleonhart's Avatar
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    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    maybe no report for income tax hehe

    jkjk

  4. #4

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    Those professionals whom you rubbed shoulders with may do other things as well, at least some of those whom I met do that.... Maybe part time real estate (last time was easier, one of my VG pals did that), insurance, tuition, part time/amateur trader (stocks, forex, gold), perhaps they do property/businesses overseas?
    Last edited by 2100; 25th February 2011 at 06:12 PM.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Cheesecake's Avatar
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    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    Quote Originally Posted by lamergod View Post
    I was surfing ecareers.sg after my school introduced this site, and sure enough, the first thing I checked was photographer. They stated that the average wages of a photographer is 1,300 SGD.

    Let's take it as he/she is the sole bread winner of the family of 5

    That got me thinking, wouldn't that mean they would have problem feeding their family let alone invest in equipments and studio rental. They probably might even have a bit of a problem paying Singtel or Starhub to get internet and surf clubsnap. So is it really true that the market is so tough?

    I've had my fair share of shoulder rubbing with professional freelancers as well as employees of Straits Times on the side-lines of football games and they all seem to have cars and iPhones.

    So is it really a case where ecareers.sg got this wrong or that somehow photographers manage to find money on the floor and buy their equipments while feeding their family.

    What say you?
    i was on S$2k/mth many years back as a fresh fine arts graduate in a local big advertising firm as a junior photographer.
    You'll Never Walk Alone! - i have the best job in the world!

  6. #6
    Senior Member Cheesecake's Avatar
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    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    if u have a strong portfolio and a local firm is hiring, u can try asking for a higher pay.

    certs play a small part but the portfolio is everything.

    later on, the firm that i worked for hired another junior photographer, a design dip holder at S$1.6k/mth.

    the firm i worked for specialises in food fotography.


    i would think that some smaller firms might need in-house fotographer and might not require them to be experts in certain fields of fotography, just a general fotographer and thus, the pay might not be that high.
    You'll Never Walk Alone! - i have the best job in the world!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    Just for your info/consideration : Nowadays IT Servicedesk support engineer, Dip/greenhorn no exp needed, $1.8k/mth starting. "FT" with 0 or 1 years might take a look at this if desperate and looking to renew their passes (think they need to do so within 2 weeks, else balek kampung). SGreans, I don't know....but I know this IT area few years back already condemned until cannot be condemned due to pretty widespread mistreatment + low pay.

    1999 I started off 1.5k IT server admin, that time I already kbkp could not survive (give parents $$, makan, buy day to day necessities). Luckily 1 year later broke off agent contract and shaved off the overheads, shot to 1.8k.
    Last edited by 2100; 28th February 2011 at 09:42 AM.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    actually i realize that i am not really into engineering, and i want to transfer to photography degree with BFA, but looking at the career opportunity, i am really scared.. i tried to stay in engineering, but keep failing my modules.. I was quite interested when i saw this thread.. sorry TS if this is considered hijacking your thread, but i also want to get some insights from the people who have BFA here, whether what you say is true, and so i can really assess the risk before transferring..
    - troubled undergrad -
    Olympus XA/Canon QL17 GIII flickr

  9. #9
    Senior Member Cheesecake's Avatar
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    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    Quote Originally Posted by bayusuputra View Post
    actually i realize that i am not really into engineering, and i want to transfer to photography degree with BFA, but looking at the career opportunity, i am really scared.. i tried to stay in engineering, but keep failing my modules.. I was quite interested when i saw this thread.. sorry TS if this is considered hijacking your thread, but i also want to get some insights from the people who have BFA here, whether what you say is true, and so i can really assess the risk before transferring..
    sorry, BFA = bachelor in fine arts?
    Last edited by Cheesecake; 28th February 2011 at 11:20 AM.
    You'll Never Walk Alone! - i have the best job in the world!

  10. #10

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    depending on what type of work u do, the starting pay for a photographer can be pretty low. i believe the pay that was given in the website is for photographers who work under a company, not people who run their own biz.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    Maybe the SGD1300 is referring to the average price the photographer would be paid for a single actual day wedding shoot/pre-wedding/engagement shoot/portraits/corporate event assignment.
    Kent Wong Photography |Leica Q & Leica M-P 240 | 75 & 28mm Summilux

  12. #12

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    Bayusuputra, just have to find what you'd be interested to do and continue with that lah.... I know the feeling of failing. And even after you have graduated, the climb up the corporate hierarchy is never easy, and after that when you hit 35-40 here you hit the crisis of getting retrenched and difficulty in getting re-employed, family may have issues (wife and kids wants more and more, but hey your pay increment can barely keep up with the true inflation rate of all the needs and wants...don't even talk about promotion esp coz one is not super on-the-ball career-minded), and because of the stress here you find your overall energy and health slipping day by day, hair dropping day by day. That's life in Singapore for the general masses.

    Still haven't hit Toto... !@#%$!@$

  13. #13

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    From wat i hear, the pay is indeed relatively pathetic if u start working for the press (sph) as a junior photographer. My ex-instructor has to supplement his income by becoming well... an instructor. So, learn to be a WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER. 3k per assignment if ur lucky.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    On the bright side, $1300 a month = $15600 a year nett pay, that guaranteed and no need to buy computer or camera.

    With people who started out doing their business, to even break even their initial investment might not even viable.

    Basic investment would be at least $4-5k to start with. Let's say, you are good and shoot $1000 wedding and if you are lucky, you could do 15-20 weddings and after minus the operational cost and initial investment, you probably make less than when you are working. No CPF no sick leave no annual leave. Ah... Try to do it without knowing business side. You not even break even, let alone making profit.

    Regards,

    Hart

  15. #15

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    Quote Originally Posted by 2100 View Post
    Bayusuputra, just have to find what you'd be interested to do and continue with that lah.... I know the feeling of failing. And even after you have graduated, the climb up the corporate hierarchy is never easy, and after that when you hit 35-40 here you hit the crisis of getting retrenched and difficulty in getting re-employed, family may have issues (wife and kids wants more and more, but hey your pay increment can barely keep up with the true inflation rate of all the needs and wants...don't even talk about promotion esp coz one is not super on-the-ball career-minded), and because of the stress here you find your overall energy and health slipping day by day, hair dropping day by day. That's life in Singapore for the general masses.

    Still haven't hit Toto... !@#%$!@$
    Quote Originally Posted by Cheesecake View Post
    sorry, BFA = bachelor in fine arts?
    yes, BFA as in Bachelor in Fine Arts.. I was actually drawn into engineering at first because my father was an aircraft engineer and i grew up learning about aircraft and automotive.. but i guess i have seen my limitations and i don't think i can survive there (in engineering).. i am really interested in taking photography and digital imaging as a future career, but bounded by tuition grant, i have to work minimum 3 years here, and i know that job opportunity here is quite unforgiving for arts graduates.. i know some of you might say, "why taking your hobby into occupation?" i would say, "hey, why not? i am interested in it.." but i just want to know some insights from BFA graduates, or maybe others who have experience to share, is it really difficult to get a job with a decent pay with degree in photography (means, just enough to cover living expenses of the family and not living high class..)? or what other job scopes i can take with the degree? if what TS is saying is true that PG can only earn that much money, then surely it will not be enough for me to support my future family..

    i really need some honest and helpful insights from everyone.. i have to decide on this as soon as possible.. and this is is quite important for my own future.. but first, i have to seek some advice before taking the plunge, right?

    TIA!
    - troubled undergrad -
    Olympus XA/Canon QL17 GIII flickr

  16. #16
    Senior Member Cheesecake's Avatar
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    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    Quote Originally Posted by bayusuputra View Post
    yes, BFA as in Bachelor in Fine Arts.. I was actually drawn into engineering at first because my father was an aircraft engineer and i grew up learning about aircraft and automotive.. but i guess i have seen my limitations and i don't think i can survive there (in engineering).. i am really interested in taking photography and digital imaging as a future career, but bounded by tuition grant, i have to work minimum 3 years here, and i know that job opportunity here is quite unforgiving for arts graduates.. i know some of you might say, "why taking your hobby into occupation?" i would say, "hey, why not? i am interested in it.." but i just want to know some insights from BFA graduates, or maybe others who have experience to share, is it really difficult to get a job with a decent pay with degree in photography (means, just enough to cover living expenses of the family and not living high class..)? or what other job scopes i can take with the degree? if what TS is saying is true that PG can only earn that much money, then surely it will not be enough for me to support my future family..

    i really need some honest and helpful insights from everyone.. i have to decide on this as soon as possible.. and this is is quite important for my own future.. but first, i have to seek some advice before taking the plunge, right?

    TIA!
    BFA, a huge jump. just a very general question, r u good at drawing?
    You'll Never Walk Alone! - i have the best job in the world!

  17. #17

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    To be a photographer, you don't need to have a degree.

    Just need to go out there and create images that represent what you view about this world and finding your voice.

    Once you have got that, you can just find work.

    I graduated from engineering and later wanted to do photography in diploma when I was in Sydney, but the interviewer ask me why would I need a degree or diploma for photography? So I didn't end up taking the course. Sad things about engineering degree is, they will train you to be a good engineer but never give you any tips on how to make a living.

    If you want to be a photographer and perhaps do well, go and study business/ marketing and apply those and hopefully, if you are desperate enough to make it work and those business skills will help you in a way. This will be my suggestion for you.

    Hart
    Last edited by Agetan; 1st March 2011 at 07:46 AM.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    Quote Originally Posted by Cheesecake View Post
    BFA, a huge jump. just a very general question, r u good at drawing?
    actually i did much better in art classes than in science classes..

    Quote Originally Posted by Agetan View Post
    To be a photographer, you don't need to have a degree.

    Just need to go out there and create images that represent what you view about this world and finding your voice.

    Once you have got that, you can just find work.

    I graduated from engineering and later wanted to do photography in diploma when I was in Sydney, but the interviewer ask me why would I need a degree or diploma for photography? So I didn't end up taking the course. Sad things about engineering degree is, they will train you to be a good engineer but never give you any tips on how to make a living.

    If you want to be a photographer and perhaps do well, go and study business/ marketing and apply those and hopefully, if you are desperate enough to make it work and those business skills will help you in a way. This will be my suggestion for you.

    Hart
    i was thinking about that, but the requirement to get into business is far harder than to even get into engineering, so i am not sure whether i can do that.. what i am thinking is taking business as minor program.. i wanted to take up business as minor now in engineering, but i find engineering load alone is overwhelming.. even the school counsellor told me to drop some subjects and extend my study to more than 4 years to ease up the load.. that's how badly i do.. and what i know from a friend of a friend who is now taking photography, the degree actually encapsulates digital imaging as well, so not just photography.. and he said about becoming editors are one of the career options.. but i still wanting for more views.. sorry if this is OT.. but i just couldn't help when looking at the thread title..
    - troubled undergrad -
    Olympus XA/Canon QL17 GIII flickr

  19. #19

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    Hi bayusuputra,

    It sounds like you are suffering in your engineering degree courses now.
    Do you mind to quit your study now and work under a good and experienced full-time photographer as an assistant, editor or 2nd photographer? It's better than extending your study on something you dislike and suffer for another 4 years.
    Having a degree doesn't mean you can earn a lot of money nowadays. Some degree holders earn less than $1500 when they just enter the workforce.
    Famous people like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs also don't have a degree but have succeeded in what they like to do. Of course at the beginning stage you don't see the money but it should be sufficient for basic living expenses. And in the long run, with your passion and strength in photography it will prevail. You have to believe yourself.
    Kent Wong Photography |Leica Q & Leica M-P 240 | 75 & 28mm Summilux

  20. #20

    Default Re: Photographer's wages according to ecarrers.sg

    Quote Originally Posted by kentwong81 View Post
    Famous people like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs also don't have a degree but have succeeded in what they like to do. Of course at the beginning stage you don't see the money but it should be sufficient for basic living expenses. And in the long run, with your passion and strength in photography it will prevail. You have to believe yourself.
    be really careful when comparing us as normal people to these exceptional people. They were drop out, but they do know their inner voice to start with and have guts to make it.

    The TS not even sure about what course to take let alone understand what he want to achieve with life.

    It is scary not knowing all that and jump straight in... And chances are, they may change their mind later on and then what happen?

    Working full time as a photographer is not as simple as many people will think. Most people who fail seems to think photography is all they need to be successful. Photography is just part of the equation.

    If TS is being funded by Ma&Pa scholarship now, he should do a degree and really learn the whole process, not just academically. I been through uni and I am a good studio and prefer to do what I want... What I learn more during my uni days are things that I don't learn in the classroom. It's the whole process that you should look at.

    Excel academically don't guarantee you well off life after, but it does give you a buffer or perhaps an exit strategy if things don't work out.

    Of course, if TS is a type of person who know 100% what is his inner voice, and willing to tolerate risk, by all means, quit school and jump right in.

    Regards,

    Hart

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