Professional Photography Associations and Bodies provide continuous support, education and guidance to the budding as well as the professional photographers.
Advertising Photographers of America - US - APA's mission is Successful Advertising Photographers. Their goal is to establish, endorse, and promote professional practices, standards, and ethics in the photographic and advertising community. They seek to mentor, motivate, educate, and inspire in the pursuit of excellence.
American Society of Media Photographers - US founded in 1944, this professional photography association is the leading trade association for photographers who photograph primarily for publication. ASMP promotes photographers' rights, educates photographers in better business practices, produces business publications for photographers and helps buyers find professional photographers.
American Society of Picture Professionals - US since 1966, this non-profit professional photography association has provided professional networking and educational opportunities for those who create, edit, research, license, manage or publish pictures.
The Association of Photographers (AOP) - UK - Formed in 1968, the AOP brings professional photographers together, protecting their rights and promoting photography. They also provide information services, education programmes, exhibitions and publications to support these activities. As well as the Awards, the AOP also organizes separate annual competitions for photographic assistants and students of photography, which are equally highly respected and well established.
AOP publishesBeyond the Lens which is an essential guide to rights, ethics and business practice in professional photography. Now in its third edition it is used by colleges/universities as part of their courses and widely used by photographers and commissioners. It is a must read for the professional photographer !
Australian Commercial and Media Photographers (ACMP) - AU Established in 1991, this professional photography association acts as a united voice for Australian professional working photographers. The ACMP is committed to the development and promotion of professional photography. It provides members with an understanding of the more complex issues of professional photography such as copyright re-usage, contracts, sales tax, legal protection, digital imaging. insurance, standard terms and conditions.
The British Institute of Professional Photography (BIPP) - UK is a not-for-profit UK organisation dedicated to qualify, train and support photographers across all types of photography - from architectural to advertising photography. Run by photographers, for photographers, they provide advice and support, along with a programme of training courses, the most respected professional photographic qualifications in the UK and a host of regional and national events and seminars.
Editorial Photographers UK & Ireland founded in 1999 by a small group of professional photographers who wanted to create an email group to address business issues affecting photographers. Everything EPUK does is produced by full-time photographers working in their spare time.
The Guild of Photographers - UK originally established as the Guild of Wedding Photographers in 1988, aims to bring together individuals who are committed to the craft of photography for profit and pleasure. Most of the Guild members specialise in Wedding and Portrait Photography but, whatever your speciality - Commercial, Events, Pets, Landscapes etc., they can offer help and advice to their members.
The Institute of Medical Illustrators - UK - Founded in 1968 to bring together the several disciplines of medical illustration, for over 40 years IMI has set and maintained standards for the profession. For its membership, IMI provides a rich network of fellow professionals, working together to improve and develop medical illustration by means of conferences, courses and regional meetings. Their website provides further details about the job of Medical Photographer as well as links to sites advertising job vacancies.
International Association of Panoramic Photographers - US - Founded in 1984, this professional photography association is dedicated to educating, promoting, exchanging artistic and technical ideas, freely sharing information and expanding public awareness and appreciation for panoramic photography and immersive imaging.
The Master Photographers Association (MPA) - UK - Established in 1952, the members of this professional photography association are full time, qualified and professional photographers. The MPA professional photography association offers its members a variety of membership benefits, including education, qualifications, informative regional meetings, national seminars, business building promotions and marketing support.
National Press Photographers Association (NPPA) - US - Founded in 1946, this professional photography association is dedicated to the advancement of visual journalism, its creation, practice, training, editing and distribution, in all news media and works to promote its role as a vital public service.
North American Nature Photography Association (NANPA) - US - is a non-profit Corporation dedicated to providing information, education, inspiration and opportunity for all persons interested in nature photography.
Professional Photographers of America (PPA) - US - Established in 1880, it is the world's largest nonprofit professional photography association, with more than 20,000 members in 54 countries. This association seeks to increase its members' business savvy as well as broaden their creative scope, advancing careers by providing all the tools for success
The Royal Photographic Society (RPS) - UK Established in 1853, this professional photography association aims to promote the art and science of photography and it is an Educational Charity. It awards distinctions that are recognised throughout the world and has established special interest groups and meetings for its members, who are drawn from both amateur and professional photographers. It publishes a monthly journal.
Society of Wedding and
Portrait Photographers (SWPP) & The British Professional
Associates (BPPA) - UK - SWPP and BPPA merged in
2000 under the umbrella of the SWPP and currently represents
photographers who specialize in the following
areas of expertise both in UK and Internationally: Freelance,
Photojournalists, Weddings, Portraits,
Children, Animal, Equestrian, Digital, Commercial, Fashion &
Glamour, Landscape, Nature, Sport, Medical, Scientific, Press, PR,
Architectural, Industrial, Forensic, Natural History, Research,
Lecturers, Digital imaging technicians.
Members benefit from continuous education in the field through Europe's largest Convention, regular meetings and programs, access to educational materials, and sharing knowledge with their peers.
SWPP Partner Societies:
British Association of Picture Libraries and Agencies (BAPLA) - UK is the trade association for picture libraries in the UK and the largest organisation of its kind in the world. BAPLA also works closely with its sister organisations - the Picture Archive Council of America (PACA) in the USA and CEPIC across Europe.
The Broadcasting, Entertainment, Cinematograph and Theatre Union (BECTU) - UK is the independent trade union for those working in broadcasting, film, theatre, entertainment, leisure, interactive media and allied areas.
The Bureau of Freelance Photographers - UK was founded in 1965 to help freelance and aspiring freelance photographers to sell their pictures to editorial markets.
Chartered Institute of Journalists - UK was formed in 1884 and is the world's longest established professional association for journalists. CIoJ members work in all areas of journalism, including: Book Editing, Feature Writing, Picture Researching, Book Writing, Illustrating, Public Relations, Broadcasting, Photography, Reporting, Cartoons, Photo-journalism, Researching, Crossword Compiling, Production, Sub-Editing/Editing.
National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ) - UK delivers the premier journalism training scheme in the UK. Their range of journalism training products and services includes: accredited courses; qualifications and examinations; awards; careers information; distance learning; short courses and continuing professional development; information and research; publications and events. They offer a Photo-journalism course with photography as its foundation.
Picture Research Association (PRA) is a professional organisation for picture researchers, picture editors, and anyone specifically involved in the research, management and supply of visual material to the media industry.
Photo Marketing Association (PMA) is a a professional trade association, helping the worldwide photo imaging community achieve business success and adapt to new technologies.
The Sector Skills Council for Creative Media - UK is dedicated to providing support to the Media Industry. They also provide impartial media careers advice for aspiring new entrants and established industry professionals. Whether you are a freelancer looking for training information, a student seeking careers advice or a public agency partner, they aim to provide you with easy access to the information you may require.
The Society for Photographic Education - US is a non-profit membership organization that provides a forum for the discussion of photography and related media as a means of creative expression and cultural insight. Through its interdisciplinary programs, services and publications, the society seeks to promote a broader understanding of the medium in all its forms, and to foster the development of its practice, teaching, scholarship and criticism.
If you are further interested in a career in the field of Photography, you will find beneficil visiting our Photography markets section as well as reading our article How to Get Recognition for Your Photographic Work .