Photography Director Salary

Photography Directors in the United States tend to have a good amount of experience under their belt — slightly less than three-fifths have more than 10 years in the field. While pay runs from $39K to $120K per year, median earnings come to $68K per year. Career length and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. Some workers in this field — close to one-fourth — are not awarded benefits. Medical coverage is reported by a fair number and dental plans are enjoyed by a majority. Men make up a slight majority of Photography Directors (51 percent) who responded to the survey. The figures in this overview were provided by individuals who took PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$39,268 - $120,114
(Median)
$39K
$68K
$120K
MEDIAN: $68,201
10%
50%
90%

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$10.07 - $50.81
(Median)
$10
$20
$51
MEDIAN: $19.00
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$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$39,268 - $120,114  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $8,274  
Profit Sharing
$8,250  
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).
)
$38,892 - $119,561  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 95
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
$10.07 - $50.81  
   
Overtime
$-0.50 - $145.44  
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
$0.00 - $8,274  
   
Profit Sharing
$8,250  
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).
)
$38,892 - $119,561  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 22
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Job Description for Photography Director

Photography directors usually work on the set of a film or television show and are in charge of the production's cinematography and visual style. They often work with the producer and head director to develop ideas regarding this visual style, and they themselves often hire and manage several crew members who are in charge of the cameras and lighting.

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Photography Director Tasks

  • Apply best practices for use of light, framing, and composition.
  • Evaluate, manipulate, and publish photos using computer software.
  • Photograph people, events, and items according client specifications.

Photography Director Job Listings

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Photography Directors only report a few specific skills. Fortunate workers who know Product Photography command much higher paychecks, scoring salaries 25 percent above average. Those listing Video Editing as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. People Management and Adobe Photoshop also typically command lower compensation. It is not unusual for someone who knows Adobe Photoshop to be familiar with Product Photography as well.

Pay by Experience Level for Photography Director

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


For many Photography Directors, more experience generally translates to higher pay. The average inexperienced worker's salary is approximately $45K, and people with five to 10 years of experience bring in more at around $58K on average. People with 10 to 20 years of experience make an average of about $88K in this role. Individuals who report more than two decades of experience seem to make only slightly more than folks in the 10-to-20 year range; the more senior group sees median earnings in the comparatively modest ballpark of $103K.

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Experience Affects Photography Director Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 69%

Experienced
up arrow 45%

National Average
$61,000

Mid-Career
up arrow 5%

Entry-Level
up arrow 26%

Skills That Affect Photography Director Salaries

Product Photography
up arrow 25%

National Average
$61,000


People Management
up arrow 14%

Video Editing
up arrow 31%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 21 votes.

Gender

Female
49 %
Male
51 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
16%
5-9 years
24%
10-19 years
33%
20 years or more
25%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 74%
dental benefits
Dental: 57%
medical benefits
Vision: 50%
dental benefits
None: 26%
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