Photography branch in the British Army

Discussion in 'RLC' started by jungle_jim, Mar 31, 2007.

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  1. Sorry to bother you guys, a find of a friend is asking about joining the servicies as a photographer, i have found some info for the RAF and RN, but having snags finding info for the Army. does such a branch exist if so could you give me some information or a link to some information

    many thanks
  2. The RLC tend to be the phot blokes (formerly the RAOC). I know it used to be a trade a little while ago but not sure if it still exists.

    Post this in the RLC forum. (You'll have to cut your way through truck drivers and egg techs first but I'm sure one or two phot blokes can help).
  3. Cow

    Cow LE

    Knew of a guy in the Signals who retraded to RLC as a photo person. Pretty sure most people there had internaly transfered and had an interest in photography. Tried the ACIO?

    They def exist as they're always on tour following round the Big Cheese's, trying to get your photo to get you crated.
  4. We're out there. There are about 44 Army photographers capbadged RLC. You can't join direct, but need to transfer in to the trade
  5. My Bold.

    How the hell is Jungle Jim to know the way to join THE TRADE, whatever the trade is, unless you mean the RLC. Even then you haven't told jim how to achieve it. More help required here please.

  6. Gumball, classic day 1 week 1 mistake assuming that people on an army rumour website are conversant with Army ways.

    Jungle, yr "mate," needs to join the Army/RLC initially and then transfer to the Photographers trade. Not sure on if spaces are available, met a few "Phots" in my time and seem like a decent if misunderstood bunch, sure they would advise if you ask. Try a pm to Gumball perhaps :?
  7. We did the recce-photo course at RAF Cosford..yarda yarda yarda

    I think thats now the centrel HQ for the Combined Photo bods... they were recruiting quite heavily back in 2003/4
  8. General Melchett

    General Melchett LE Moderator

    Yes, Cosford is the central joint service phot training centre.

    I don't think there is a requirement to initially be RLC to transfer. Remember if you fail the course or don't get accepted to transfer across you'll be stuck as a driver/supplier etc.
  9. you need to transfer in, cant remember at what rank you can start.
  10. There used to be an arrse user called Eagle / Zip travolta who used to work with the guys at wilton.

    They do a lot of travel economy class, which is a bit of a pain.

    From what I can recall :oops: ,
    they seem to have an excellent local knowlege of South Beach Miami night-life , gained during Crab air "unserviceability" stops
  11. Its a incredibly small trade and sits uncomfortably within the Corps, as mentioned, its an RAOC throw-back.

    Wouldn't surprised, and astonished already, that it hasn't been offered up to another A&SD or indeed the RAF

    The photographers fulfil no operational role, less to support the good work of DMOC, i wouldn't advise anybody to join up to become a photographer, such a small body, and real risk of ending up in a job you don't want to do when plan A doesn't work-out.

    (personally i would preferred to give up 40ish photogrpahers than 40ish suppliers / chefs under MSWG but, maybe there were bigger picture issues that we weren't exposed to (good double puns...geddit!!)?)
  12. Jim,

    the trade of army photographer is open from LCpl.
    You volunteer through the normal chain of command (yes you must be serving)

    from there you will go on a 1 week potential photographers course,

    you have to present a portfolio of your own work, sit in front of a board consisting of around 4-5 photographers (mil & civi)

    Then you have a maths test (equiv to key skils 2), a day of theory and practical training, a BPFA or PFT or whatever its called these days and then you do a 24hr ex, 4 rolls of film, a 1960's manual nikon and lenses, 1 town or village name and you have to bring back 10 images on themes that they pick and 2 personally picked images.

    after this is done you then put up your images, all the head phots from the army and some civvies come fro a look, vote on your images and the Master phot makes the call, yes or no.

    if you pass then its onto the 6 month pro phot cse, and the world is your oyster

    ps I failed!! :(

    MODS, if this is against opsec then feel free to edit etc
  13. Apologies if my reply was unclear. To become an Army photographer it is prefered that you have done 5 years in the Army and have at least a recommendation for promotion to Cpl, if not alredy a Cpl. I believe you are given ACpl on completion of the course, most likely to do with the fact that some officers believe they know better than a qualified professional.

    You need to go in front of a senior Army photographer who will take a look at some of your images and make a recommendation to the Master Photographer as to whether you are a suitable candidate to go forward for the 5 day selection course.

    The selection course, held at RAF Cosford, consists of a PFT, simple maths test, photography theory test, display of your portfolio, 24hr exercise (8 subjects with 8 images required from 4 rolls of 36) and an interview with a panel of 3 senior military photographers.

    Each selection consists of 8 people with an average of 1 person getting through

    You then go join the 7 month course, also held at RAF Cosford, where you are trained to achieve NVQ level 3 in Digital Photography and an Advanced Modern Apprenticeship.

    Postings are vaired and include HQ Land, Hereford, PATA, 16 Air Assault Bde, 19 Bde, 1 Mech Bde, 12 Bde, AIS (NI), School of Army Aviation, SHAPE, Rheindahlen, Cyprus and London District, to name but a few off the top of my head.

    Promotion within the trade can be slow as the highest rank is WO1 and there is only one of them. Having said that, with it being dead mans shoes it does mean that every 10 years or so there is a sudden jump in rank of those in the trade to fill the void left by those more senior members who are leaving the Army.

    Hope this has been a bit more in depth for you and answered some of your questions.
  14. Awww bugger, so the phot trade isnt open to orificers? Im not in yet, but i study photgraphy at a-level, and was wondering if I would be able to indulge in a professional capacity within the Army
  15. RP578

    RP578 LE Book Reviewer

    I believe 'Brigade Photographer' posts have been opened since last year. Don't know if they're actively recruiting at the moment, but a few seniors should looking to retire so the inevitable promotion ripple might be starting soon. To be honest if want to join the forces to be a photographer, you're best bet is the RAF as they have an entry level trade i.e. you can join up specifically to be a Phot.