Photographic laboratory workers or photo lab technicians develop and process photographic images from film or digital media. They also may perform precision tasks such as editing photographic negatives and prints. Occassionally, they mount slides as well as sort and package finished photographic prints. Some of these laboratory workers are known as darkroom technicians, film laboratory technicians, and developers. There are approximately 11,940 photographic process workers and process...
Minimum Education Level
Median annual earnings for photographic process workers and processing machine operators were $32,280 in May 2019, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. However, earnings ranged from less than $22,300 to $59,100 or more a year. Most salaried photographic workers are eligible for benefits such as medical insurance.
Photographic laboratories are usually clean, well lit (except for darkroom areas), and air-conditioned. Many of the jobs performed by semiskilled workers are limited and repetitive and may become monotonous. The jobs often entail sitting or standing for a considerable amount of time in one place. Employees in these jobs need patience and ability to concentrate on details.
Employment for photographic laboratory workers is expected to decline 21 percent through 2028, according to the Occupational Outlook Handbook. Most openings will occur as a result of the need to replace workers, especially machine operators.
Digital photography is extremely popular among amateurs and professionals. Although digital images will never completely replace p...