Become a Great Cinematographer with These 5 Tips from Successful DPs


Cinematographers are responsible for the visuals in filmmaking. From the lighting and shot size to camera angles, cinematographers are an artistic eye behind the camera, taking charge of visual storytelling.

Cinematography is one of the competitive fields in the industry, with several individuals making top cinematographers’ salaries.

For most, it may feel like a mountain, which is very steep to climb, however, if you’re looking to pursue a career in cinematography, the following are tips from the pros:

Get Education

Aspiring and young cinematographers may benefit a lot by enrolling in film and video production schools. Most film schools offer many opportunities to study the all-round sides of the cinematography career.

Many degree programs are available in many film schools. However, many employers prefer DPs with a bachelor’s degree.

Educating yourself in the field can ensure you succeed and teach you the pieces and bits of cinematography.

You may meet different individuals working in the cinematography field and other related sectors at the film school.


Meeting new individuals who are in the film sector is a perfect way to open up and learn more about future employment possibilities immediately after you graduate from video production school.

Network through a community event, exclusive screenings, social media forums, and parties. While networking, professionals, like Mark Murphy Director suggests that you build good relationships with different people of the production crew, including:

  • Directors
  • Producers
  • Gaffers
  • Production managers
  • Grips

Oversee and Gather the Camera Crew

Video and film productions are basically a team effort, and an important component of the crew works with a cinematographer. The DP, also a cinematographer, is responsible for gathering the camera team, which comprises many members based on the budget and project.

As a cinematographer, you will also oversee the camera and lighting throughout the shooting process, ensuring they set up every shot while working closely with a director to compose shots.

Be Loyal and Patient

Apart from being understanding of producers, actors, and directors, cinematographers are loyal and patient. So being a cinematographer means you will deal with everything that has to do with the visual language of TV series, moving pictures, and films.

It’s upon you to bring together the effort of most people to create an agreement on what makes a vision.

Spend Time on a Film Set

Experience is the best teacher, before you look for work, spend more time on an actual film set,  where you can learn with a hands-on approach. It’s a perfect and easiest way to see the idea put into practice without pressure.

Most workshops can expose you to the way it works behind the scenes, and seeing how the experts, including set designers, camera operators, and directors, do it may teach many things that a workshop cannot.

Concluding Remarks!

Cinematography remains one of the best fields you can venture into. So if you are looking to be a professional cinematographer and are unsure of what steps to take, consider enrolling in a film school, spend time in the film set, network, and be patient in the cinematography field.