About the BIPP

The British Institute of Professional Photography is an internationally recognised qualifying organisation with over 100 years experience in supporting and networking photographers.

We are a not for profit organisation delivering education, qualifications and professional development to photographers. We achieve this by offering a challenging qualifications structure alongside a full programme of training courses, events and a number of preferential deals on useful products and services.

With members worldwide covering every discipline of photography, BIPP also works with a number of Colleges, including the Defence School of Photography and the College of Policing to ensure the future of the professional photographic industry. One of the key areas of our work is helping to represent professional photography to government and industry.



BIPP is run by photographers, for photographers, in conjunction with a small Head Office Team.

Our Advisory Boards, Board of Directors (elected by our Members) and all Regional Committees are run by volunteers, who give their time freely. The BIPP's structure ensures that we are able to adapt quickly and effectively to the ever-changing photographic industry.

• Membership Services Advisory Board - made up of regional and national representatives from our membership.
• Board of Directors - elected from the Membership Services Advisory Board
• Continuing Professional Development Advisory Board - focuses on education, training and qualifications.

BIPP is a not for profit company limited by guarantee, registered in England no 00178503. The VAT registration no is 215 6631 76.


History of the BIPP

There is a general agreement that professional photography emerged in 1842, just three years after William Fox Talbot demonstrated his 'photogenic drawings' to the Royal Institution and the Royal Society.  The evidence is in an advertisement suggesting that photographic portraits would make useful Christmas presents, studios were besieged and photography emerged as a profession.

On 28 March 1901, at a meeting at a hotel in Fleet Street, one hundred photographers assembled and unanimously formed 'The Professional Photographers' Association'. Branches were formed in Birmingham, Edinburgh, Hull and Liverpool and in 1907 the membership stood at 757. Evolving through the years and after three name changes, we have become The British Institute of Professional Photography.