Photojournalist Salary

Photojournalists in the United States can expect only a modest salary, with average pay of just $40K per year. Earnings sit near $25K on the lower side but can approach $61K per year on the higher side. Career duration and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Making up 74 percent of those who took the survey, male Photojournalists greatly outnumber their female counterparts. Though the majority of Photojournalists do not report high levels of job satisfaction, most are moderately content with their role. A large number report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a fair number collect dental insurance. The data in this summary comes from the PayScale salary survey.

$27,690 - $62,933
(Median)
$28K
$40K
$63K
MEDIAN: $39,885
10%
50%
90%

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$10.36 - $24.50
(Median)
$10
$15
$24
MEDIAN: $14.00
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$21K$42K$63K
Salary
$27,690 - $62,933  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,548  
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).
)
$25,135 - $60,579  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 139
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$13$26$39
Hourly Rate
$10.36 - $24.50  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.38  
Overtime
$15.08 - $36.11  
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$26K$52K$78K
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,548  
   
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).
)
$25,135 - $60,579  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 115
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Job Description for Photojournalist

A photojournalist takes photographs, and articles are written about these photos. These articles may be in a newspaper or magazine or online. The photojournalist should keep abreast of the happenings of the world to be able to create relevant pieces. In order to come up with unique pieces, the photojournalist may have to travel to places to gain a better understanding of certain situations.

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Photojournalist Tasks

  • Review sets of photographs to select the best work.
  • Operate various types of photographic and computer equipment to create photographic images.
  • Use creative knowledge to compose photographs.
  • Take pictures either in studio or on location.
  • Work with clients or workplace teams to create photographic images.

Common Career Paths for Photojournalist


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At the upper end, Photojournalists who move into a Video Editor role may earn a little more as the latter position has a median salary of $41K per year.

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Popular Skills for Photojournalist


Just a handful of professional skills are reported by Photojournalists who took the survey. Most notably, skills in Apple Final Cut Pro, Adobe Photoshop, Video Editing, and Photography are correlated to pay that is above average. Those with knowledge of Adobe Photoshop tend to be skilled in Video Editing as well.

Pay by Experience Level for Photojournalist

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


Respondents with less than five years' experience take home $31K on average. In contrast, those who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably higher average of $42K. People with 10 to 20 years of experience make an average of about $40K in this role. Photojournalists who have spent more than 20 years on the job report earning a significantly higher median of $50K.

Related Job Salaries

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Experience Affects Photojournalist Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 38%

Mid-Career
up arrow 14%

Experienced
up arrow 11%

National Average
$36,000

Entry-Level
up arrow 14%

Skills That Affect Photojournalist Salaries

Apple Final Cut Pro
up arrow 16%

Adobe Photoshop
up arrow 1%

Video Editing
0%

National Average
$36,000

Photography
up arrow 2%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 36 votes.

Gender

Female
26 %
Male
74 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
41%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
18%
20 years or more
18%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 87%
dental benefits
Dental: 73%
medical benefits
Vision: 62%
dental benefits
None: 12%
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