Meet Our Photography Senior Tutor, Anthony Griffin

In this blog, Anthony Griffin explains what skills a good photographer needs, how our courses develop these skills and what it’s like being a professional photographer.


Having the right skills

“There's a certain amount of technical ability to being a photographer – certain rules, processes and methodologies – and while it is critical to understand and acknowledge these, you can then break the rules in an informed manner,” says Anthony.

Anthony believes there are a number of factors that contribute to being a successful photographer. “I think having secondary hobbies or interests can help to inform your photography; it can sometimes be easier to draw from what you know. Also having a sense of creativity, of wanting to say something visually and having a good eye. While some of these may be inherent, it’s possible to train the eye and develop how you see and portray things.”


Image courtesy Anthony Griffin


Studying with the Academy

While all the courses cover basic camera settings and the technical side of photography, Anthony says that sometimes it’s only when you do a course that you start to realise what you need to know. “You can learn from books, you can learn online but unless you know what you need to learn, you're not going to find the information. Our courses show you what you need to learn.”

“Our course units are varied in terms of the technical, theoretical, historical and contemporary aspects of photography, as well as providing opportunities to creatively develop,” says Anthony. “How to shoot with intent, how to produce an image that you've already created and seen in your mind.”

As well as being great value for money, Anthony believes that giving students the option to study online or in a blended classroom environment opens up the subject to a broader audience. 


Image courtesy Anthony Griffin


Learning in a safe environment

“It's ok to make mistakes as this is when you really learn,” says Anthony. “Our courses provide a safe environment to make such mistakes; they provide learners with a foundation on which to build upon their learning. You'll learn how to problem-solve; you’ll still make mistakes, you'll still wonder how you do certain things, but you'll have the skills and knowledge to work through issues and problems.” 

Anthony is quick to praise the course tutors. “They care, that's evident from the posts I see on the forums, in their feedback and in one-to-one email responses. Our tutors are working photographers, they’ve been through academic learning and training and for them, education and professional development is important. They bring a wealth of advice and encouragement to every student interaction.”

But it’s not only the tutors that offer valuable support, says Anthony, “your peers, the people that you study with, in a classroom or online – you learn a lot from them.”


Image courtesy Anthony Griffin


Becoming a photographer

Learning how to market yourself, about portfolios and administrative skills is also an important part of our advanced courses, says Anthony. “Photography is a business when you're a professional. Great images but a bad business model isn’t a good match. On our courses students learn how to produce meaningful, quality work in a professional manner.”

“A career in photography is a career in something that you love,” he says. “It can be challenging but it can also allow for flexibility in your day-to-day life with opportunities to explore many aspects of other people's lives, society at large and more. It's varied, at times solitary, but working with models or as part of a creative team allows for lots of fun.”


To find out how you can become a photographer, visit our courses page.

All images © Anthony Griffin Photography. Reproduced by kind permission. All rights reserved. 

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Written by: Lucy Anderson

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