next step roadmap

Assignment: Develop a specific plan ‘next step roadmap’ for yourself that plans out and addresses what you’ll do upon the completion of the MPS Digital Photography program starting this summer or at whatever point in time you’ll be going “out there”. This assignment is the specifics of “what’s next” for you.


What are overall professional goals for the upcoming 6 months, 1 year, and a short description of what you envision far ahead in 5 years? (Do not get hung up on year 5, as some have in past classes. It’s a short description, one or two paragraphs of where you want to be in 5 years. While you will need to do research for 6 months and 1 year, no research needed for a 5 year projection.)

With your goals, describe what kind of photographer will you become. If you are not sure, contact either one of us as soon as possible.

What are your most pressing concerns upon leaving Graduate School?

Where will you be located (geographically)?

What is your market? How do you fit in and/or set yourself apart?

Who do need to contact? Include a list of 8 to 15 professional contacts with names and with as much info as possible such as emails, mailing addresses, and phone numbers. You will need to research to get this info.

How and when you will be contacting them? Email, mailers, request for meetings?

What will you be presenting to them? A business card, a photo card, a mini-portfolio? Show us. Can be a rough of what you will have, not a final sample.

What marketing tools will you be using?

How and when will you follow-up with those contacts and what will that follow-up consist of?

Which if any, conferences or portfolio reviews do you plan on attending? You may not be planning any, but you can research and find such events online.

Who are your mentors and professional inspiration?

Are there any professional groups or associations do you plan on joining such as APA, ASMP, PPA, FIAP? And why?

What is your greatest challenge in achieving your goals?

This assignment will be graded for overall presentation style, research, and substance. Remember the following when you prepare this:


Lagniappe. It’s about not doing only what is asked and no more. It’s about the extra.

It’s about presentation and going beyond the basics. Don’t just tell us, show us.

Do the research to get specifics where you can. Actual names, real companies, real people for your contact list. Use real addresses and/or phone numbers when possible.

It’s about communicating directly, specifically, and not in vague terms.

This is not to be make-believe! This roadmap should be a valuable guide to you well after this class.


This can be as short or as long as needed. You can hand in a plain one-page plan with goals of being a rock star photographer shooting for Vanity Fair or National Geographic, but you may not be happy with that final grade. You can say you will hang out at home for 6 months deciding what to do later, but again, you will not be happy with your grade or your professional career!


Our advice is to start this assignment this week and not put it off, as it will take time to do properly. Waiting until the last minute to do it and finish it will be obvious. You have 4 weeks for this. You would be smart to accelerate the timetable shown below and hand it in earlier than the deadline.

Is this question part of your Assignment?

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