EMERGING PHOTOGRAPHERS

Right Moves: Career Assistance

Myrna Kresh



Myrna Kresh, has 30 years of experience working with emerging and established photographers. Formerly the Executive Director of the Advertising Photographers of New York, Myrna energized and expanded APNY’s Assistant and Emerging Photographer Programs and has a profound understanding of what it really takes to make it as a pro. Myrna is an industry insider, producing and representing visual artists, in their commercial and personal projects.

Dear Right Moves,

I’ve been an assistant for the past 6 years. The money is good,  the work is stimulating. Is there anything wrong with staying an assistant forever? Maybe I’m not meant to be a solo act photographer? Maybe I should stay where I am. Am I selling out? Does anyone go through photography school, assist, and then decide to be an assistant forever?

Assistant Anonymous, New York City

Dear Assistant Anonymous,

You’re happy assisting? You like the work? You like the security? You’ve been assisting for six years? ABSOLUTELY stay on your present assistant career path. I am hoping you belong to APA or ASMP, so you’re learning business practices and meeting other assistants who share your concerns and interests. Learning the business basics of photography is a MUST if you’re assisting or working on your own.  

Honestly, I don’t know of anyone who has gone through photography school with the endgame of being an assistant in his or her mind, but I do know amazing assistants who have been assisting, running studios, producing, for 20 years! None of us can know what our path will be, all we can do is put one foot in front of the other and keep moving in directions that make emotional and financial sense to us.  

Keep your mind clear on this. You are not “settling” because you choose a direction other than the one you originally intended. You are probably growing and that discomfort is called growing pains.

To submit your advice questions to Right Moves, send an email to myrna@myrnak.com.

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