Careers in Digital Media
What do you want from your career? Most likely, you’re hoping to find a path that leads to steady employment and the opportunity for advancement. You might also want to find work that challenges you and that engages your creative side. A career in digital media can provide all that.
Digital media careers focus on design, video editing, audio editing, or photography. Many careers in the field pay salaries that are higher than the national median salary. The field is also expected to have plenty of job opportunities over the next decade. Learn more about your options in the field and what you can do to get started on the path to a fulfilling digital media career.
Graphic designers work to create concepts that connect with consumers. They can use hand drawing or computer design programs to create illustrations or photo layouts. Their projects might appear on the pages of magazines or on websites. Some design the covers of books while others specialize in product or packaging design.
A career certificate in digital media can be the first step you take toward a career in graphic design. After earning a certificate, you can pursue job opportunities at magazines, newspapers, advertising agencies, or design companies. You can also continue your studies by enrolling in an associate’s degree program in graphic design.
The median graphic designer salary is $52,110 as of May 2019.
Video Editing or Cinematography
If film or television interests you, a career as a video editor or cinematographer might be a good match. Cinematographers film movies while camera operators typically work on television productions. Individuals who film private events, such as weddings or other ceremonies, are known as videographers. Camera operators, videographers, and cinematographers can also edit the footage they shoot, but in some cases, editing is a role played by a separate person.
Working as a video editor or camera operator can give you a considerable amount of creative freedom. You might be able to start your own company, filming local events or you might find work at a local TV station or with a film production company. As of May 2019, the median salary for video editors and camera operators was $55,160.
An interest in photography can lead to several possible careers. After earning a certificate in digital photography, you might find work at a portrait studio, taking pictures of people for work or school, or capturing people as they celebrate major life milestones, such as a pregnancy or engagement. You could also work for a newspaper or magazine, taking photos on assignment.
Some photographers decide to work for themselves, taking on freelance assignments. If you work for yourself, you can specialize in one area, such as weddings or sports photography, or you can take a more generalized approach, accepting any assignment or project that interests you.
Many photographers get paid by the hour and the median hourly wage was $17.44 in May 2019. Photographers who work for broadcasting companies or newspapers tended to have higher hourly wages than photographers in other fields.
A web designer creates websites. Depending on their specific roles and skillsets, they might focus exclusively on the front end design, which influences the look and navigation of the website, or they might focus on both the front-end and back end, which concerns itself with how the website operates.
Website designers typically work with clients and need to design sites that meet the needs and specifications of their clients. Along with making sure the site looks attractive, a designer should focus on how quickly it loads and how easy it is for a user to navigate the site. The median salary of a website designer and developer was $73,760 as of May 2019.
An audio technician sets up the sound for TV or radio programs. They might also work in recording studios, working with musical artists on records, or helping people record voice-overs for commercials or other productions. Some also work on the visual aspects of productions and might be known as audio-visual technicians.
Audio technicians earned a median salary of $45,510 as of May 2019.
Whether you want to work in design, video, photography, or audio production, Orange Technical College offers career certificate programs that can help you get on the path to a new career. To learn more about our programs in digital media, answer a few questions and an admissions representative will be in touch with you soon.
- “Media and Communication Occupations”, Bureau of Labor Statistics, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/media-and-communication/home.htm
- “Graphic Designers”, Bureau of Labor Statistics, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/arts-and-design/graphic-designers.htm#tab-5
- “Film and Video Editors”, Bureau of Labor Statistics, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/media-and-communication/film-and-video-editors-and-camera-operators.htm#tab-5
- “Photographers”, Bureau of Labor Statistics, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/media-and-communication/photographers.htm#tab-5
- “Web Developers and Digital Designers”, Bureau of Labor Statistics, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/web-developers.htm#tab-5
- “Broadcast, Sound, and Video Technicians”, Bureau of Labor Statistics, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/media-and-communication/broadcast-and-sound-engineering-technicians.htm#tab-5