Freelance Photographer Salary

Freelance Photographers in the United States can expect wages of $25.62 per hour on average. Location is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by career length. Medical benefits are awarded to around a tenth, and less than one-tenth earn dental coverage. Men are in the minority of survey respondents, with female Freelance Photographers making up 71 percent. Job satisfaction is considered about average by most people in this profession. The data in this summary comes from the PayScale salary survey.
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$12,438 - $96,957
$12K
$31K
$97K
MEDIAN: $30,521
10%
50%
90%

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$11.53 - $100.43
$12
$26
$100
MEDIAN: $25.62
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$80K$160K$240K
Salary
$12,438 - $96,957  
   
Bonus
$500  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$20,987 - $205,891  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 23
© PayScale, Inc. @ www.payscale.com
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$50$100$150
Hourly Rate
$11.53 - $100.43  
   
Overtime
$15.00  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$100K$200K$300K
Bonus
$500  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$20,987 - $205,891  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 70
© PayScale, Inc. @ www.payscale.com

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United States (change)

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Job Description for Freelance Photographer

Freelance photographers usually find that the job has two sides, a creative side that involves the photography of subjects and a business side. Most photographers find the creative elements of the job to be rewarding enough to be willing to endure the vagaries and hassles of the business side. Most photographers will specialize somewhat in the subject matter they shoot. This specialty is usually based upon the aptitude and interest of the photographer. For instance, some photographers will work in nature and landscapes. Others will work in urban settings or portraiture. Some may specialize in sports work.

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Freelance Photographer Tasks

  • Perform photo shoots for clients.
  • Meet with clients to discuss needs.
  • Edit photos.
  • Determine and use the best photography equipment for the situation.

Common Career Paths for Freelance Photographer


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Freelance Photographers who advance into a position like Fashion Photographer may end up working for a little less. On average, Photographer, Fashions take home $44K annually. Freelance Photographers most often advance into Photographer and Commercial Photographer positions even though the median salaries are $18K lower and $11K lower, respectively.

Freelance Photographer Job Listings

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Pay by Experience Level for Freelance Photographer

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Those who have worked for fewer than five years take home a median salary of $48K, and workers with five to 10 years of experience earn a higher $53K on average. Freelance Photographers see a median salary of $67K after reaching one to two decades on the job. Survey participants with more than two decades under their belts actually report earning less than people with less experience; the former take home only $59K on average.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Freelance Photographer

Gender

Female
71 %
Male
29 %

Job Satisfaction

Satisfied
Rated 3 out of 5
based on 5 votes.
Less than 1 year
1%
1-4 years
53%
5-9 years
25%
10-19 years
13%
20 years or more
9%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Freelance Photographer Salaries

Experienced
▲30%

Late-Career
▲13%

Mid-Career
▲3%

National Average
$52,000

Entry-Level
▼8%

Job Satisfaction

Satisfied
Rated 3 out of 5
based on 5 votes.

Gender

Female
71 %
Male
29 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
1%
1-4 years
53%
5-9 years
25%
10-19 years
13%
20 years or more
9%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 11%
dental benefits
Dental: 6%
vision benefits
Vision: 8%
dental benefits
None: 89%
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