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Digital Photography CVs and Creative Job Hunting. Mona Vadher Employability Services. Agenda. Overview of the Employability Services The Alumni Mentoring Scheme Programmes Creative CV’s Creative Job Hunting Preparing yourself for finding a placement

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digital photography cvs and creative job hunting

Digital PhotographyCVs and Creative Job Hunting

Mona Vadher

Employability Services

  • Overview of the Employability Services
  • The Alumni Mentoring Scheme
  • Programmes
  • Creative CV’s
  • Creative Job Hunting
  • Preparing yourself for finding a placement
  • Skills gained from Digital Photography Students
  • Jobs Boards
employability services
Employability Services

We offer a variety of services that give you the best possible opportunity to secure your dream job.

Whether you want to find the ideal graduate role, set up your own business, gain work experience through volunteering or placements, work for LSBU or simply want some help with your CV, we offer something for everyone.

job shop ground floor student life centre
Job ShopGround Floor, Student Life Centre

Opening hours: 9:00am to 5:00pm, Monday to Friday – Drop In Service

    • Hard copies of career guides and FAQs
    • Prospects and other graduate directories
  • Online Resources including Job Shop Online
    • Part time and full time work, graduate roles, work experience, volunteering and placement vacancies advertised
  • Drop in sessions for quick queries and advise
    • Employability and Careers advice
    • Part time work, graduate job, volunteering and internship/placement search
    • CV checking, application forms, mock interviews, assessment centre preparation help.
career gym 1 st floor student life centre
Career Gym1st floor, Student Life Centre

Workshops in the Career Gym:

  • CV workshops
    • Mondays - 12:30
    • Wednesdays - 12:00pm
    • Fridays - 2:00pm
  • LinkedIn Lunchtimes
    • Fortnightly on Thursdays (next session 20thFebruary 2014)
  • Volunteering:
    • Drop In every Tuesdays: 10am - 1pm
    • Volunteering Fair – 5th – 6th Feb
  • Skills to Succeed sessions, E-learning
  • Employer Workshops and Presentations
  • Mentoring Scheme
careers fairs
Careers Fairs

AHS Career Fair

Creative Industries:

Film, Games, Sonic Media etc.

Thursday 3rd April 2014

11am – 3pm

Student Centre

alumni mentoring scheme
Alumni Mentoring Scheme

Is LSBU’s first online Mentoring Scheme,connecting mentors to students.

Provides an opportunity to gain employability advicefrom industry professionals.

Offers real-life insight into today’s working world.

alumni mentoring scheme1
Alumni Mentoring Scheme

How will you benefit from the scheme?

As a mentee, you will receive first-hand knowledge, employment advice and encouragement from someone who has valuable industry experience, for 6 months.

Who are the mentors?

Former LSBU Graduates who are now industry professionals, have signed up to support you with career direction, support and guidance.

alumni mentoring scheme2
Alumni Mentoring Scheme
  • Training:

Attend one of our Mentee Training Days

  • Set up an Account via:
  • Choose your Mentor and send out a Proposal:

Receive Employability Support for 6 months

alumni mentoring scheme3
Alumni Mentoring Scheme

February Training Sessions:

  • Tuesday Feb 18th - 2pm-3pm
  • Wednesday Feb 19th - 2pm-3pm
  • Monday Feb 24th - 10am-11am
  • Wednesday Feb 26th - 2pm-3pm

To book a place contact:

Rudaba Osmani:


Starting a Business - 12thFebruary - London Road - 10am – 12pm

Delivered by Urban Balance

A session focussing on developing business and marketing plans; reviewing funding options; getting your first client; skills required for setting up a business, including self-management, solving problems, communication and commercial awareness.

3 day Freelancing Programme - 14th, 21st& 28th February - Borough Road – 10am – 4pm

Delivered by Parity

Creative Job Searching - 19thFebruary - Career Gym – 1.30pm – 3pm

A session created to explore different methods of job searching, thinking outside the box and accessing roles through routes other than those we commonly think about.

Business Etiquette - 20th February - London Road – 2pm – 5pm

Delivered by Black Bullion

Differentiate yourself from other candidates. Make a great impression pre, during and post an interview. Develop and project your personal brand: the elevator pitch, incorporate the tricks of your trade, build an online image. Create opportunities: cultivating relationships.


What is the purpose of a CV?


To Get an Interview

elevation pitch discussion
Elevation Pitch:Discussion

Imagine you are in a lift with an employer who could offer you your ideal job.

What would you say in 30 seconds to convince that person to employ you?



CV Mistakes…

Incorrect Contact Details

Spelling grammar and usage mistakes

Wrong chronological order

Too much body text- too wordy

Poor formatting or overly complicated formatting on CV

Unprofessional email address /other unprofessional/ informal use of language

All soft skills, no tangible skills on the CV

cv structure
CV Structure
  • Personal Details (Including Linked In, Blog and/or Portfolio link)
  • Personal Profile/Career Objective
  • Skills Profile/Skills Set
  • Education and Qualifications
  • Memberships/Additional Training –
  • Work experience/Career History
  • Interests/Hobbies
  • References
  • CVs should be saved in a format that can be viewed by the maximum number of people
  • Use .pdf format or.jpeg , rather than .doc (except for a few exceptions)
  • Make sure that the file is saved for web viewing (File > Adobe PDF Presets > Smallest File Size), so that it is small and does not clog up the inbox
  • 3 dimensional CVs are eye catching but may give employer problems filing them – so maybe have 2 versions
  • Decide which to send depending on recipient – if HR person then send plain text version but if creative director then the full designed version would have impact
  • Don't let the medium interfere with the message- Start by producing a standard CV. Only when the wording is excellent consider into something that is a bit different:
  • Get the content right before focusing on the design. - It is the content and presentation that will make the impact and not gimmicks. Eccentric CVs can put off employers. CVs have to be filed. How can you file a 3 dimensional CV?
  • The standard CV model is always the safe bet - Jobs where there are likely to be many applicants - the media, think tanks etc. - you may need to take more risks with your CV just to get it noticed.
  • Content is king - the best looking CV will not get you interviews unless it also contains depth of content.
  • Don't include content such as graphics if they don't add any useful information about you as this is the sole purpose of a CV!
  • You need to balance eye-catching/different with a sharp and professional promotion of your style.
top tips
Top Tips…..
  • Presentation is particularly important but that does not necessarily mean an unusual CV. - These are difficult to compose and tend to detract from the key purpose of the CV (the range of skills that relate to the job). Your creative skills can be assessed via your portfolio.
  • It's the content, practical skills, and work experience that employers are particularly interested in, plus evidence of what you have created: listings of exhibitions etc.
  • Work experience take priority over education. For example for a multimedia CV include your technical skills (Flash, Maya, Photoshop XHTML etc.)
  • Provide a link on your CV to a web site with examples of projects from your portfolio. Let your real work do the talking, not the CV layout.
  • Work experience is used to demonstrate the soft skills that most employers want: teamwork, customer service etc. Creativity is demonstrated in your portfolio not your CV.
  • Once you do start introducing more of a design element to a CV you have to recognise that this is more of a high risk strategy. Some recruiters may love your design, others may hate it, so show your CV to other people first. 
  • Where they have specialized recruitment functions, a well formatted CV will always work better.  Large advertising agencies recommended a standard CV.  Some smaller companies may like a more individual approach. They may be more impressed by an unusual CV because they have fewer to look at.  
more top tip s
More Top Tip’s…..
  • A tasteful and subtle watermark or border can be effective.
  • Landscape shaped CVs (wider than they are long) are harder to format correctly but can stand out from the crowd.
  • Book format CVs (folded into four A5 size pages) are awkward to photocopy and to look at.
  • One method is to have a business card with examples of work on the card - this should be in addition to rather than a replacement for, your CV.

Creative CV guide

Jan Cole & David Whistance

(University of the Creative Arts)

2 Copies in the Perry Library - 650.142 COL

1 reference copy in the Job Shop

job options
Job Options

Jobs directly related to your degree include:

  • Animator
  • Location Manager
  • Photographer
  • Press Photographer
  • Illustrator
  • Commissioning Editor
  • Television Camera Operator
  • Fine Artist
  • Printmaker

Jobs where your degree would be useful include:

  • Advertising Art Director
  • Broadcast Engineer
  • Television/Film/Video Producer
  • Graphic Designer
  • Programme Researcher, Broadcasting/Film/Video
  • Magazine Features Editor
typical employers
Typical Employers

Photography graduates enter technical, operational and creative areas, as well as taking on roles in support functions. Popular employers include:

  • Large broadcasters such as the BBC, Channel 4 and Sky
  • Websites
  • Communications companies
  • Independent film production companies
  • Public sector organisations, e.g. universities
  • Charities
  • Publishers
  • Advertising and marketing agencies
  • Self-employment is a common option, with graduates taking on photographic jobs alongside other employment with the aim of developing a portfolio of clients.

Opportunities may be advertised via company websites, recruitment agencies and in magazines and newspapers. However, these are sectors in which you are very likely to find employment through work experience, which allows you to develop and demonstrate your skills, and through personal contacts

what employers look for
What Employers Look For?

Question: What you think are the key skills and experiences…..

  • You have gained from your BA Digital Photography course so far?
  • Employers look for when recruiting candidates for a creative role?
skills digital photography students gain
Skills Digital PhotographyStudents Gain

Studying Digital Photography develops a diverse range of skills including:

  • Ability to initiate, develop and realise distinctive and creative work in various media, such as digital photography and audio-visual formats,
  • Ability to work flexibly and independently with self-discipline and self-direction;
  • Communication skills and the ability to present an argument,
  • How to evaluate and reflect on your own work,
  • Teamwork,
  • Project management, including financial awareness,
  • Problem-solving,
  • Working to a deadline,
  • Entrepreneurship,
  • Research,
  • Technical skills, such as IT, media production, multimedia and web-based technologies,
skills your d egree has given you
Skills Your Degree Has Given You
  • Researching, judging and evaluating complex information → analysis
  • Presenting arguments in a clear, persuasive and compelling way → communication
  • Applying theory to organisational problems → problem solving
  • Ability to manage workload with personal life and work/volunteering → time management
  • Working effectively in a group as well as independently → team working
  • Creative thinking → using initiative
  • IT skills
what skills do employers look for
What Skills do Employers Look For?
  • Underpinning all these attributes, the key foundation must be a positive attitude:
    • a 'can-do' approach
    • a readiness to take part and contribute
    • openness to new ideas
    • a drive to make these happen
  • Employers also value entrepreneurial graduateswho demonstrate an innovative approach, creative thinking, bring fresh knowledge and challenge assumptions
what skills do employers look for1
What Skills do Employers Look For?
  • Analytical ability
  • Good oral and written communication skills
  • Influencing and negotiation skills
  • Problem solving/using initiative
  • Time management/organisation skills
  • Teamwork
  • Creativity
  • IT skills
  • Business and commercial acumen
  • Drive and ambition

Notice the similarities: What does this tell you?

The transferable skills that employers are looking for in graduates are those that you already have.

what next
What Next?
  • Have I been in to register with the Employability Service?
  • Do I have an approved CV?
  • Am I receiving and reading mail-outs from the employability advisors with new opportunities?
  • Is my search wide enough?
  • Am I getting my application forms/ covering letters checked at drop in?
  • Am I also sending out speculative applications and contacting companies speculatively?
how do i make myself employable
How do I Make Myself Employable?
  • Volunteer – gain valuable transferable skills
  • Try to secure an internship or work/graduate placement– highly desired by employers (note: deadlines for a lot of grad schemes is Christmas)
  • Send speculative requests for work experience to employers – between 70% and 80% of jobs are never advertised
  • Use LinkedIn – great networking tool
  • Get your CV checked by us in the Job Shop!
the speculative approach
The Speculative Approach

A request for a job that you send to a company although the company has not advertised one

(Financial Times Lexicon: )





rules for speculative applications
Rules for Speculative Applications

Research the company thoroughly beforehand and make sure you are clear about:

  • What they do and Why?
  • How they make a profit (if applicable)
  • Where they are based

Ensure your covering letter includes:

  • Your understanding of their activities
  • An explanation as to why you are interested in working with them
  • Relevant skills you can offer them

I have included an example of a speculative approach below:

next steps
Next Steps
  • Bring a paper copy of your CV to the Job Shop for checking with the placement service
  • Once checked and approved this will allow you to register for the Job Shop Online to get access to the work placement jobs as and when they come in
  • The team will also be able to send you job alerts and info about events during the year – Store CV Placements CV Bank
  • Apply directly through company website for their placements opportunities
top tips1
Top Tips

Be clear about what you want.

Have an understanding about what you want to gain from an internship, better yet write it down. What's most important to you:

  • Work experience
  • Learning new skills and gaining hands-on experience
  • Increasing your networking connections
  • Creating an entry point to the potential of a full-time position
top tips2
Top Tips

Use your connections.

Once you have the marketing area that your interested in, you are ready to turn on the "wow" power and start contacting and reaching out to businesses.

  • Use your network to connect with those who can introduce you to the hiring powers of the companies you are interested in.
  • Use your social networks like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to learn about new opportunities.
  • Devote time to your search daily.

The search may take patience, but don't lose heart and most of all keep your energy positive this will help in landing that desired position.

sector skills council
Sector Skills Council
  • Creative Skillset: The Sector Skills Council for the Creative Industries offers a specialist careers information, advice and guidance service for a wide variety of careers in photo imaging.
  • Association of Photographers (AOP) togain immediate access to a network of assistants and professionals. You can also promote yourself on their web-based Assistant Search list. The AOP offers portfolio critiques, workshops and seminars, and runs competitions, which offer winners a good opportunity to improve career prospects.
job searching
Job Searching
  • Personality, perseverance and patience are all essential, and dedication is needed to get a foot in the door.
  • Although freelancework may be solitary at times, photographers also need the ability to blend quickly into work teams and to build rapport with different people, for example when working on shoots.
  • The impact of digital technology has revolutionised the industry. In most areas, such as editorial and sports photography, digital technology has become dominant.
  • It is now the norm for images to be supplied in digital format, usually on CD-ROM or via the internet, which is likely to involve image manipulation using software packages like Adobe Photoshop or Aperture after the photographic shoot.
job searching1
Job Searching
  • As well as a strong CV, a professional and impressive portfolio is essential and could be online, a traditional 'book' or a CD. It can contain tear sheets, if available. Whatever format you choose, your portfolio must be:
    • Relevant to the chosen area
    • Well presented
    • Constantly updated
  • It is useful to join photographic societies, visit exhibitions and galleries, look at photographs in books and magazines and find out as much as possible about any specific fields of interest.
  • Volunteering, work shadowing, work experience and project work are also great ways of gaining experience and skills, as well as making contacts. Any opportunity to have work published should be taken, even if it pays little or nothing.
placements through lsbu
Placements Through LSBU

Work Placements we have currently are managing:

  • The Tree Council - Photography Intern (Unpaid)
  • Emer O’Brien Visual Artist - Artists Assistant (Unpaid) - Location: Seven Sisters, 7hrs a day for 10 weeks -
  • Oxford House - Photography Placement (Unpaid) – Location: Bethnal Green 

To apply for the above three, please send your CV and a covering letter to Chris Messenger via by 9:00am on Monday 17th February 2014.

Please put “Name of Internship you are applying for” in the subject of your e-mail.


  • Invisible Dust -  Social Media Intern (Unpaid) - Location: Dalston-

If interested, please submit a 1 - 2 page CV and a covering letter of 1 side A4to our Producer Alessandra@invisibledust.comwith ‘ID Internship’ as the subject heading. Please indicate your availability and any areas of special interest you have for the internship.

job boards
Job Boards
  • Blog: