The “point” of photography is a very subjective thing. However, in its most basic form, the purpose of photography is to capture and record light. By this I mean it is used to capture moments in time that we see with our eyes.
Many people like photography because it gives them the ability to remember significant moments that they have experienced within their life (wedding, birthday, etc.), while others may find emotional satisfaction within the visual elements of a photograph from an “artistic” point of view.
In technical terms, the history of the word “Photography” comes from two greek/latin words:
- φώς (“phos”), meaning, quite simply, “light” in English terminology.
- γραφίς (“graphis”), or γραφή (graphê), meaning something comparable to the English words “control”, “writing”, “delineation”, or even “painting”.
Put together, common translation would be something like “drawing with light”, or “painting with light”
Photography can be a job, absolutely. Photography can be a career. Just like any service rendered, it can be monetized. There are many people in the world who charge money to photograph weddings, to photograph birthday parties, and many other things. The possibilities are virtually limitless.
The salary, or rate of compensation, of a photographer varies tremendously. Some photographers like to be paid by the hour, and some like to charge a flat fee. Average rates that I have seen for talented local photographers tend to be around the $50.00 USD to $150.00 USD per hour.