Anyone desiring to become a fashion photographer should ideally first get a college degree in photography, fashion or any similar category of study. A level of formal education would be helpful in a competitive career, even if the person works as an independent fashion photographer, rather than being employed at a fashion magazine. Bruce Weber, for instance, spend years studying art at Denison College in Ohio. Over the decades, he has become pretty popular for his work for Vogue, GQ, Vanity Fair, Elle, and Rolling Stone magazines.
To truly succeed as a fashion photographer, one needs to be knowledgeable enough. In addition to mastering their work with the camera, these photographers also have to be well-versed in the world of fashion and style. They must try to stay up-to-date with the influences, current trends and major players. While concepts can be learned at college, the only way to understand what is trending is to immerse oneself in the fashion culture. Even if a photographer is a stylish person themselves, they still need to gain an idea about what consumers are attracted to in terms of style and fashion. Like many other domains of photography, the role of a fashion photographer does involve a career-long job of continual education as fashion keeps changing and evolving with time.
Another aspect of getting well-acquainted with fashion is to study the past. A lot of past styles have gained popularity in recent years. Hence, it can be a smart move to refer to fashion magazines of the last five six decades, and notice what the stars of major movies were wearing back then. All this knowledge of fashion is needed to help people become great storytellers with their camera. While the technique is obviously important, it is not always enough to become a great fashion photographer. Most fashion magazines and editors like to hire photographers who can effectively convey a story through photographs. All editors know the allure of a good story can ignite the imagination of the consumers and convinces them to buy a magazine.
In addition to gaining knowledge and learning how to tell a story through their photos, fashion photographers of today also need a proper portfolio and website to showcase their work. Even well-established and renowned photographers like Bruce Weber have their own websites. A lot of magazine editors determine the value of the work of a fashion photographer simply by looking at the first few images of their portfolio. Hence, it is important that they keep a few of the best photos in front. The content of the photos present in the portfolio has to match the kind of assignments preferred by the photographers, and how confident they are about completing them successfully. Most editors of fashion magazines are likely to pay heed to attractive portraits than enchanting landscapes, so one needs to keep this point in mind when building their portfolio.