It is great to receive emails from photography students who would like to apply for an internship, but for some students it’s hard to stand out from the rest. Read these tips and go for it!
Create A Perfect Portfolio: Digital + Printed
It is important for the photographer to see your work, first online at your website and social media like Facebook and Instagram. Your website and social media shows who you are, what your style is and how you work. The first thing I do is checking Instagram and then later I will have a look at the website. Make sure to have an about page where you write a little story about yourself and your photography, if possible with a portrait photo of yourself. If the photographer invites you for an interview, make sure to print your best photos (around 20-25 is enough) and present them in a book. Printing out your photos on photography paper will show that you are serious. Only show your best work! Click here for more tips about creating an impressive portfolio.
I can highly recommended to have a cover letter submitted in your first email. Write down the reasons why you should be given the chance to be an intern and what you would like to learn. Also make sure to make it more personal to tell about yourself, the reason why you love photography so much and your previous experiences. Add some photos or decoration if you want your letter to stand out from the others. Be creative! Change the cover letter for every photographer, don’t just write: I love your photography! But desribe more why you like their work so the photographer know the letter is made just for him/her and not for 50 other photographers.
Showing this eagerness and willingness to learn
Sometimes I receive emails with just 2 sentences: ‘Hi, I need an internship for 6 months for 5 days a week. Can I work for you?’ Ok, so first, who are you, where do you study, what would you like to learn, where can I find your work and why should I choose you? Students who send emails like this don’t make any change to get that awesome internship. Take the time and effort to create a cover letter, to show your work and add a CV. Showcase your technical expertise and know-how, let them know what you’re capable of. Photographers would like to see your passion for photography both in your email as in the interview.
Only aply to an internship that interests you
Avoid disappointments to make sure that know what task you will do at the internship. Internships aren’t always fun but that is part of the job. Don’t apply for a fashion photography workshop if you don’t like fashion or if you are not a team player. Email or a phone call? I think you should always start with an email and if preferred make that call. Personally I prefer email above phone calls.
Learn from the photographer, but don’t copy
You will see and learn a lot during your internship and as a photography student you are probably still figuring out your own style. But please don’t copy a concept, the set-up, the team, the way of editing etc! Learn from their work, but make it your own. Again, be creative!
insiders tips from my intern Klaudia
Hi everyone, my name is Klaudia Molenda and I am currently an intern at Liselotte Fleur Photography. I am 22 years old and I study at Grafisch Lyceum in Rotterdam. I am in my final year and I can’t wait to graduate. When it comes to photography I love to make portraits and shoot fashion editorials.
When I found out about Liselotte and I saw her work I immediately knew I wanted to do my internship there! I really was amazed by her work; it is really refreshing, modern and cool. I knew she was getting a lot of request so I knew I had to stand out with my application letter.
First I introduced myself. I told who I was, which study I attend and which photography direction I have chosen. After I introduced myself I wrote in my letter about my internship; how long my internship would last and how many hours I had to make a week. I also explained why I wanted to do my internship at Liselotte’s; I mean I liked her work a lot and I wanted to learn how to photograph like Liselotte. I was also inspired by her style it was fresh and modern.
At the end of my email, I attached a link to my website, so she could see my portfolio. The final thing I attached was my Curriculum Vitae.
So this is how I applied for my internship. I’ve got some tips for you how to apply for a photography internship!
- First thing is to introduce yourself ! Most people forget about introducing themselves. Say a few words about yourself, your name, age, hobbies and education, otherwise the photographer you are applying for would ben not interested in you.
- Tell something about your own work. Which direction you are heading and why. You can also describe your photography style.
- Attach your work in the application letter. You can attach the link to your website or a few images.
- Explain why you applying and what you would like to learn at your internship there.
- Tell the photographer what you like about his/her work and why.
- Add your Curriculum Vitae.
- And the most important thing: be creative and be yourself!
If you would like to ask me more, you can always contact me on my Instagram. Good luck!
The key is to make sure that you present yourself as a photographer who is ready to learn about the business. I also wrote a post about What I’ve Learned From My Interns, And What I Want Them To Learn.
Want to read more about photography internships? Read my other post about How To Survive A Photography Internship together with intern Nienke!