dcsimg

Photographic Machine Operator

Job Duties

Photographic machine operators work with various types of photographic-related machines, including mounting presses and motion picture film printing, photographic printing, and film developing machines. Both amateur and professional photographers depend on these workers to complete their final photographic product.

Photographic machine operators often specialize in various types of work and have specialized job titles. Film process technicians operate machines that develop exposed photographic film or sensitized paper in a series of chemical and water baths to produce negative or positive images. These technicians mix developing and fixing solutions, load film into the machine, immerse the negative in a stop-bath, transfer it to a hyposolution, reimmerse it, and, finally, dry the image. Color printer operators produce color prints from negatives using color printing equipments. They determine settings, set controls, and produce a specified number of prints.

Job Skills

Photographic machine operators need to possess good manual dexterity, due to the high percentage of their jobs spent working with their hands. They must have excellent vision, including normal color perception, because of the visual nature of the work. In addition, they should have highly-developed hand-eye coordination.

Income

In 2002, photographic machine operators earned a median hourly wage of $9.05. Earnings ranged from the lowest 10%, who earned less than $6.53, to the highest 10%, who earned more than $15.60. The median hourly wage was $10.15 in photofinishing laboratories, and $7.20 in health and personal care stores, the two largest employers of photographic machine operators.

Training and Education

Employers of photographic machine operators usually prefer to hire high school graduates or experienced workers. Photography courses that include instruction in film processing can be advantageous, as can the ability to perform simple mathematical calculations. These types of courses are offered by high schools, vocational-technical institutes, private trade schools, and colleges and universities.

Photographic machine operators typically receive on-the-job training from their companies, manufacturers' representatives, and more experienced workers. New employees gradually learn to use machines and chemicals. On-the-job training usually lasts from a few hours to several months. Some workers update their skills by attending periodic training seminars.

Click here for more information on Photography Schools and the programs that they offer.

Employment

In 2002, photographic machine operators held about 28,000 jobs. 40% worked in retail establishments, mostly general merchandise stores and drug stores. 30% worked in photofinishing laboratories and 1-hour minilabs. A very small percentage were self-employed.

Job Outlook

Between 2002 and 2012, the number of photographic machine operators is expected to increase more slowly than the average. The main cause of this slow growth is the increased popularity of digital cameras. Consumers who own digital cameras and technology will be able to download and view pictures on their computer, as well as manipulate, correct, and retouch their own photographs.


Photographic Machine Operator Training

Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT Clear All

  • DEGREE

    See More

  • PROGRAM TYPE

  • START TIME

    LOCATION
    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.
            Results open in new window

            Searching Searching ...

            Matching School Ads
            Digital Photography (AS)
            • Alumni have appeared in reality competition shows such as Top Chef and Project Runway.
            • Has a team of about 4,000 faculty members focused on helping students tap opportunities in a marketplace driven by ideas.
            • Offers programs in design, media arts, fashion, and culinary.
            • Provides program coordinators who work with students to ensure they have the learning materials, assignments, facilities, and faculty to get the most out of the program.
            • Over 50 campus locations nationwide.
            Show more [+]
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Graphic Arts (AAS)
            • Offers several scholarship opportunities for students who qualify.
            • Laptop computers are issued to each student at the beginning of their program.
            • Provides programs in health care, business, information technology, and graphic arts.
            • Respiratory Therapy program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC).
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).

            Our family of non-profit colleges admits students of any race, color, and national or ethnic origin.

            Show more [+]
            Master of Fine Arts: Graphic Design
            • Liberty University’s online programs ranked in the top 10 out of more than 2,100 colleges & universities for academic quality, affordability, and accessibility.*
            • 100% online programs at associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral level.**
            • Transfer up to 90 credits into an undergraduate degree program.
            • Up to 50% of your master’s degree can be transferred in to help you get the most out of your hard work and maximize the credit you previously earned.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            ABCO Technology , Inglewood
            Good for Working Adults
            • An accredited computer training academy preparing students to enter the IT industry as Network Engineers, Software Engineers, Web Apps Developer, Website Designers, Programmers, Database Administrators since 2000.
            • Holds A+ certification from CompTIA.
            • Located in Los Angeles, approximately 10 minutes away from LAX.
            • Flexible class schedules offered during day times, evenings and weekends.
            • Helping students start a career in technology within 3 - 9 months.
            • Educates with the mission to serve the needs of the local community and graduates by matching opportunities to skills.
            • Military friendly school.
            Show more [+]
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Media Design, Master of Fine Arts (Online)
            • Push Your Creativity To The Next Level.
            • Full Sail’s curriculum combines elements of creativity, art, business and life skills, technical prowess, and academic achievement.
            • Full Sail offers accelerated programs, so a degree that would normally take four years takes 24 months on average.
            • Students work with industry-standard tools and technologies, allowing them to gain practical knowledge and real-world experience.
            • Join us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram to interact with our community, read about grad success, and see campus images.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            • Education Connection is a 100% Free College Matching Service used by 50,000 People Daily.
            • Get Matched to the Right IT, Computer Science, Cybersecurity, Software and Application Development, Web Design or Technology Management Degree Program for YOU.
            • Affordable and Flexible Information Technology Degree Programs from Top Colleges Across the Nation. Both Online And Campus!
            • Just Fill Out a Few Questions and You Can Find Your Perfect IT/Computer Science Degree Program Within Minutes.
            • Start Using our Fast, Free, and Easy Matching Service Right HERE and Right NOW!
            • Online Courses