Photo Editor Salary

Photo Editors in the United States take home approximately $45K annually on average. The most important factor affecting compensation for this group is the specific employer, followed by geography and experience level. About one in three of professionals in this line of work do not receive benefits; however, more than half report medical coverage and the larger part claim dental coverage as well. Women Photo Editors who took the survey just slightly outnumber men. The majority of workers are highly satisfied with their job. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$29,909 - $69,749
(Median)
$30K
$45K
$70K
MEDIAN: $45,069
10%
50%
90%

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$9.40 - $29.81
(Median)
$9
$15
$30
MEDIAN: $15.00
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$24K$48K$72K
Salary
$29,909 - $69,749  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $3,000  
Profit Sharing
$2,050  
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).
)
$24,297 - $67,774  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 249
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$15$30$45
Hourly Rate
$9.40 - $29.81  
   
Overtime
$17.93 - $44.85  
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$30K$60K$90K
Bonus
$0.00 - $3,000  
   
Profit Sharing
$2,050  
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).
)
$24,297 - $67,774  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 181
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Job Description for Photo Editor

Photo editors review, select, and perform editing on photos to meet the need of their employer. They communicate with other departments in the company to coordinate the type and number of photos needed (such as to correspond with a story or website); they perform any necessary editing for photos (such as color correction) as well. The photo editor generally performs a number of managerial tasks, including supervising photographers (and possibly other editors), managing contracts, completing ordering invoices, and filling out paperwork. Additionally, the photo editor may work with freelance photographers and other employees, as well as other photo editors and interns. The photo editor often works indoors, although this position may not be limited to working at a computer; the photo editor may serve as a photographer as well.

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Photo Editor Tasks

  • Ensure adherence to a style guide, correct formatting and consistent use of language within a document.
  • Review, rewrite and edit the work of writers.
  • Develop story or content ideas.
  • Supervise and coordinate work of reporters and other editors.

Publications Editor Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Photo Editor


Yahoo! Inc. leads the field in terms of pay, with a median salary of $71K.

Popular Skills for Photo Editor


Photo Editors generally report applying a varied skill set to their work. Fortunate workers who know Photography can expect a significant pay bump, scoring salaries 27 percent above average. Those listing Adobe Lightroom as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. Product Photography and Editing also typically command lower compensation. Most people who know Adobe Illustrator also know Adobe InDesign.

Pay by Experience Level for Photo Editor

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


In general, experience and pay appear to be strongly linked; those with more experience usually bring in higher incomes. Relatively untried employees who have less than five years' experience make $35K, but folks with five to 10 years under their belts enjoy an appreciably larger median of $50K. Photo Editors bring in $51K after working for 10 to 20 years. Seasoned workers who boast more than two decades of relevant experience enjoy a median salary of $59K, which is substantially larger than the medians reported by folks with fewer years on their resumes.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $41,341

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

For Photo Editors, working in the bustling city of San Francisco has its advantages, including an above-average pay rate. Photo Editors will also find cushy salaries in New York (+31 percent) and Washington (+11 percent). Photo Editors' salaries are heavily influenced by location — Photo Editors in San Diego bring in salaries that are 25 percent lower than the national average. Below-median salaries also turn up in Seattle and Los Angeles (10 percent lower and 6 percent lower, respectively).

Photo Editor Reviews

What is it like working as a Photo Editor?

Photo Editor in Houston:
"Fast, High Volume, Productivity Focused Problem Solving."
Pros: The casual camaraderie with co-workers, solving problems as a group and exchanging ideas and techniques.
Cons: It is very repetitive and sometimes not as creative as I would like. There is a definite burn-out factor, like it's a mail room with never ending product coming through.

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Experience Affects Photo Editor Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 42%



National Average
$41,000


Skills That Affect Photo Editor Salaries

Photography
up arrow 27%

National Average
$41,000

Adobe Photoshop
up arrow 3%

Adobe Illustrator
up arrow 4%



Editing
up arrow 11%

Adobe Lightroom
up arrow 23%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 87 votes.

Gender

Female
58 %
Male
42 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
48%
5-9 years
27%
10-19 years
16%
20 years or more
7%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 67%
dental benefits
Dental: 56%
medical benefits
Vision: 46%
dental benefits
None: 32%
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