Jack,Photography and digital design is a huge part of what I do as the 'technical director' for my home church. It would be incredible to put those things to work full time on the mission field. That said, "photographer" is not something I see missions organizations requesting. Having served in Guatemala, Jamaica and the Philippines (short term), I have seen how photographs of what God is doing in these places have impacted and motivated the saints back home to become more involved. It seems that many organizations spend a lot on 'stock photos' rather than pro grade pics of their actual ministry. Am I aware of a need that is simply oft-over-looked or am I mislead by my own enthusiasm for communicating through photography? Any thoughts on serving in this capacity?Thanks for your consideration.Grace & Peace,Jason
I agree with you, Jason, that photographs are huge in terms of mission promotion. My first two years on the mission field saw me purchasing a Nikon and taking hundreds of photos which are still being used. (In those days no photo credit was given so my name doesn't appear on them.)
All mission agencies are concerned to get good photos. The problem is that they may not have need for a full time photographer and many missionaries (like me) do a good enough job taking the needed photos in any specific situation.
1) Take a look at the following website: http://www.rightnow.org/worldConnection.aspx (under "video/audio") You could contact some of the agencies that are frequently mentioned and share with them your interest, skill, and experience. They would probably want you to branch out into journalism as well so that you could write stories about the photos you are taking.
2) Very large Relief and Development agencies like World Vision, World Relief, and Food for the Hungry rely on excellent photos to carry their message. You might contact them and see what would be possible. If you know other smaller agencies that are close to your heart, you could write them and share what you did with me.
3) If you are planning to go to Urbana, you will be able to talk with representatives of over 300 agencies about your interest, and receive more suggestions.
Pray about your desire to be a servant for the Lord in missions and He will open a door for you, I'm sure.