So You Want to Study Photography? Part I


This is the first of a series of articles on places to study photography around the world. This post is the latest in the Photography Series which showcases useful information of interest to modern explorers and photographers that Kike gathers during his travels.

One of the most frequent questions I get asked on social media platforms ( FacebookTwitterLinkedIn or Instagram ) is the almost impossible-to-answer, “what are the best places to study photography?” While there is not a perfect answer, I have set to explore some of the best options around the world to pursue an education in photography.

To attend or not to attend a school to learn photography, that is another question and the first thing you need to consider. There are many great self-taught photographers whose images have infused our culture with color and vibrancy. There are also many great photographers that have developed their personal style through formal education.

Its is your task to decide what works best for you. Below is some information that you may find useful in guiding your decision:

Sir JJ School of Applied Arts Mumbai
This is one of the most famous photography institutions in India and abroad, with most students entering the four-year undergraduate photography program.
Location: Mumbai (India)

California Institute of the Arts:
Considered one of the top five photography schools in the world, you can study both photography and other forms of visual art extensively here. Students flock here for a rigorous, pre-professional education.
Location: California (United States)

Yale School of Art: 
Not only can you experience top-notch educational programs in many academic realms at Yale, you can also study with some incredibly renowned professionals in the highly esteemed art program. Both the undergraduate and graduate art departments are extremely highly regarded, but the graduate program has risen through the ranks as one of the most prestigious in the world.
Location: New Haven (United States)

Australian Center for Photography:
Here, students from Australia can immerse themselves in an incredibly broad range of photographic pursuits – an incredible benefit of schools entirely dedicated to photography.
Location: Sydney (Australia)

SPEOS Photographic Institute:
Although it was only founded in 1985, SPEOS has already achieved massive renown. Located in one of the artistic capitals of the world, students can collaborate with the top names in the business and take classes that embrace SPEOS’ progressive, cutting-edge vibe.
Locations: Paris (France) and London (United Kingdom)

Vevey School of Photography:
The oldest photography institution in Europe, Vevey has long been a name to look up to. Although it has faced both external and internal criticism recently, many students still see it as a potential place to hone their skills.
Location: Switzerland

Istituto Europeo di Design:
IED has several branches: design, fashion, visual communication, and management. Some of the best people in the visual business, especially in Europe, can be found here.
Locations: Rome (Italy) and Madrid (Spain)

Ryerson University:
The Chang School at Ryerson offers students a degree in either traditional or digital photography. It has a team of experienced faculty who prove its reputation as one of Canada’s strongest institutions in this regard.
Location: Canada

National Institute of Design:
This extremely selective institution is famed for its programs in all forms of visual communication and history. There are many options for photography, from commercial and advertising to fashion and journalism, and more.
Location: Ahmedabad, Gujarat (India)

Parsons allows students for a great interdisciplinary arts education in a buzzing artistic hub. Parsons guides students with its intensive courses while keeping a strong emphasis on developing a personal vision, a must for any aspiring photographer.
Location: New York (United States)

Feel free to contact me with any suggestions on places you think could be profiled in future posts.

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Further reading:

10 Keys to Being a Good Photographer

10 Big Rules of Photography or So I Think

10 Lesson Learned with the Heart of a Photographer

Learn more:

The Unforgettable Photograph: 228 Ideas, Tips, and Secrets for Taking the Best Pictures of Your Life

The Beginner’s Photography Guide

Mastering Digital Photography: Jason Youn’s Essential Guide to Understanding the Art & Science of Aperture, Shutter, Exposure, Light, & Composition

La vision del fotografo: Entender y apreciar la buena fotografia (Spanish Edition)

Fotografia Paso a Paso, La (Spanish Edition)

National Geographic Stunning Photographs

National Geographic Image Collection

Visions of Paradise

Through the Lens: National Geographic Greatest Photographs (National Geographic Collectors Series)

National Geographic: The Photographs (National Geographic Collectors Series)

In Focus: National Geographic Greatest Portraits (National Geographic Collectors Series)

How-to Photography Books:

Perfect Digital Photography(Second edition)

National Geographic Complete Photography

National Geographic Ultimate Field Guide to Photography: Revised and Expanded (Photography Field Guides)

National Geographic: The Ultimate Field Guide to Landscape Photography (National Geographic Photography Field Guides)

National Geographic Ultimate Field Guide to Travel Photography (National Geographic Photography Field Guides)

Travel and Street Photography: From Snapshots to Great Shots

Within the Frame: The Journey of Photographic Vision

Understanding Exposure, 3rd Edition: How to Shoot Great Photographs with Any Camera

The Photographer’s Eye: Composition and Design for Better Digital Photos

The Photographer’s Vision: Understanding and Appreciating Great Photography

The Business of Photography:

How Photographs are Sold: Stories and Examples of How Fine Art Photographers Sell Their Work

2015 Photographer’s Market

Marketing Fine Art Photography

Pricing Photography: The Complete Guide to Assignment and Stock Prices

The Photographer’s Survival Guide: How to Build and Grow a Successful Business

The Photographer’s Guide to Marketing and Self-Promotion

ASMP Professional Business Practices in Photography

Best Business Practices for Photographers, Second Edition

MORE Best Business Practices for Photographers

Copyright Workflow for Photographers: Protecting, Managing, and Sharing Digital Images