Carl's Sims 3 Guide - Skills, Traits, Careers, Rewards, and Lifetime Wishes for Ambitions and World Adventures

The Sims 3 Skills
Advanced TechAlchemyAthleticBot MakingCharismaCollectingConsignment
CookingFishingGardeningGuitarHandinessInstrumentsInventing
Laser RhythmLogicMartial ArtsMixologyNectar MakingPaintingPhotography
RidingScienceScuba DivingSculptingSocial NetworkingStreet ArtWriting
The Sims 3 World Adventures
ChinaEgyptFranceMartial ArtsNectar Making
PhotographyMummiesPangu's AxeTomb Raiding TipsTomb Building

The Sims 3 Photography Guide

Getting the Most Money out of Your Sim's Photos

This guide was authored by Carl with significant help from RCHaynes from our forum. Thanks Robin!

The Sims 3 World Adventures Photography: The Pyramids in Al Simhara Egypt are an excellent photography subject

Photography is a new skill introduced in The Sims 3 World Adventures expansion pack. While Photography's not a good way to make money early on in the game, it can provide a nice steady income later. With this skill, you'll direct your Sim to photograph landmarks, Sims doing different things, and objects in the game. It's certainly not the best skill in the Sims 3's World Adventures, but it's very accessible to any Sim in any profession. Children can even learn to take photographs. The Photography skill comes with University Life, but does not provide cameras. Sims are able to level Photography using their smartphones. If you want big profit from this skill, you'll need to have WA installed and buy a good camera.

Learning the Photography Skill
There are two avenues for learning the skill. First and foremost, taking pictures. Head to one of the new locations in World Adventures and buy a camera from the general store there. While all three destinations sell the cheapie, Al Simhara, Egypt is the "home" of photography. They offer two additional, more expensive cameras (more on that later). Also at the Al Simhara book store, you'll find a skill book to raise photography to up to level 3.

I actually recommend using the skill book for this one. Read it until level 3 then chuck it. Taking poor quality, small photographs can actually run you at a loss due to the base cost of a photo. Using the skill book will get you closer to level 5, where photographers tend to stop making errors when taking pictures. Additionally, you'll unlock new camera modes on the more expensive cameras which helps to increase income.

Photography Skill Self-Employment Table
The Sims 3 Ambitions brought us the ability to label Sims self-employed in any of the money-making professions. To register as self-employed, simply gain a level in the skill and head to city hall. Here are the levels for this skill:

The Sims 3 Photographer Self Employment Career
1Papa/Mama Paparazzi$20-
2Dark Room Destroyer$50-
3Awkwardly Close Zoomer$150-
4Social Network Profile Photographer$750-
5Disposable Debutante$2500$500
6Aperture Scientist$5000-
7Titan of Timeliness$10000$1500
8Lens Lover$25000-
9Memory Catcher$45000$2500
10Snap DragonMax$5000
The Sims 3 World Adventures Photography: The general goods vendor in Al Simhara, Egypt where you can buy the best cameras in the game.

Note that you can't keep photographing the same subject and expect to gain skill. After two pictures it's time to move on. This resets after a day, and you can get decent money and skill gains from the 'New Today' photos you take. After that, it's bunk and you should find something else to photograph.

How Photography Works in the Sims 3
Press Shift+C with a camera in your Sim's inventory to take a picture. You can click the camera to do this as well, but it's not recommended. As your Sim takes pictures, they'll work toward filling photo collections. Some photos are more valuable than others, but in general as you approach the more rare shots the price multiplies. The first time your Sim snaps a particular photo, that picture will be worth more money. That's why I recommended actually using the skill book -- photography skill and higher quality cameras and camera modes will result in higher first-time prices for these pictures.

You will run at a loss if you photograph the same thing twice in a day. After midnight, you can start snapping pictures of the same old stuff and earn a little profit. The real money is to be made by going out and seeking the more rare shots. Travel photos of landmarks and dungeon objects tend to be worth more. I recommend you develop the skill some before you do this, that way you'll get the most cash for your time.

Photo Value Comparison
Forum Moderator Ricalynn shared this list of Photograph values, which tells you relative values for the different pictures before skill/photo quality price modifications.

Pointers for Early Level shots
I recommend you work your way around Sunset Valley or Riverview at first when working on photography. You can pause the game through the camera interface to ensure your Sim doesn't miss the shot. This is helpful for things like cars and Sims in action where you could miss the shot with the game time clock running. Save the really good photos for later to get maximum profit. Take photos of strangers to work on the Paparazzi challenge. This will also count toward how many unique Sims you've photographed. Look for objects like plants, different types of household items, and other types of objects detailed below. While it takes a certain level to "unlock" a photo collection, you can get it revealed early by taking only one photo out of that particular collection.

The Sims 3 World Adventures Photography: The Hikon QX40di Gladiator, the best camera in the game.Cameras
There are three cameras in the Sims 3, all purchasable from Al Simhara's general goods vendor. Using a higher value camera will result in faster skill gains. I recommend you start with the best camera you can, because boosting skills faster and taking higher value photos earlier will help you to get the most out of photography. The better cameras' photos are more likely to earn profit because they seem to multiply value despite a higher operating cost. So, if you find you're always losing money even when taking decent shots, blame your camera.

Clicking a camera in your inventory will bring up a menu where you can choose to sell your photos. Using erase all photos doesn't seem to be a useful thing to do, because you will just lose all the potential profit or loss recovery you'd achieve by selling. It doesn't make a second photo you snap revert to the first time for that day, so if you flub up a shot by taking a low quality photo on accident this won't rescue you.

The other option for clicking a camera is the settings menu, where you can set the default size and photo filter. Later you'll want to set this to vignette panoramas. Keep it set at the best photo size you have available to ensure you don't accidentally take lower value photos. The worst camera can only default its color filter.

Lastly, you can browse your photos and use them as wall decorations. Panoramas are huge. Take them home and decorate the room with photographs of your travels as well as artifacts and relics you've found along the way.

  • Snaptastic Flimsy-Cam ($250) - This horrible camera takes only small size photos and delivers the lowest quality shots. It is however cheapest to operate. Later you can use it to take panoramas but it's a waste to use up valuable first time shots with this camera. Stick with the Hikon for panoramas and large portraits. The price is almost the same if you take a panorama with this camera but the price modifier is base line so you'll often take a bigger loss when photographing the same thing.
  • ChannonTek Outlaw SE($850) - This camera can take small photos and medium landscapes. It's the middle of the road camera and good for first time photographers. You'll actually take less of a loss operating this camera
  • Hikon QX40di Gladiator($3250) - When I start photography over, this will be my camera of choice. It's worth saving up for as the more valuable photos will help to make up for the cost of the purchase price. It takes the absolute best shots and can do all sizes. Using this advanced tech camera will also serve to raise photography the fastest of all. Because of the high value photos, you can make money taking decently priced shots again and again, although probably at the most around $50 a shot. It's better to keep seeking new subjects.

Camera Photo Modes
Since there are so many photo modes to test, and different combinations available, making solid recommendations isn't that simple. However, it does seem to boil down to panorama shots with the classic vignette filter taking the absolute best photos. Use it for all first time shots when the abilities are available. In general, the more advanced the photo filter, and larger the photo size, the more money you'll make.

    Photo Sizes
  • Small Portrait - Default at Photography level 1 - This is your basic getting started photo size. It's the lowest grade photo available, with pictures coming in over 2x lower value than a panorama shot. Move on to better sizes as soon as you can.
  • Medium Landscape - A bump in price that comes early on in photography. Best taken with the ChannonTek Outlaw SE or above.
  • Large Portrait - Again, use the best available, panorama, but if this your best option use it.
  • Panorama - Finally some serious cash can start coming in once you're able to take classic vignette shots with this photo size. Your Sim won't be able to do this until level 10. Sims with this size option will finally be able to make serious cash and vacations can pay for themselves as you take new shots during your Sim's adventures.


  • Photo Filters
  • Color - Default. The lowest value type of photograph.
  • Black and White - Unlocked by level 2, you can use this to replace color and make some extra cash for your photos.
  • Sepiatone - At level 4 you can begin taking photos in the sepiatone filter. Again, move up to this new option for all your photographs
  • Classic Vignette - This photo filter is available at level 9 and will be the best option for use in your panorama shots. Use it often and make it the default on your camera.
The Sims 3 World Adventures Photography: The Terracotta Army in Shang Simla, China

The Sims 3's Photography Challenges
It's unclear what each of the challenges do, but it seems likely they boost the value of shots in certain categories. Some of these are a bit more ambiguous, such as Paparazzi and Shutternut. When we learn more about these challenges this section will be updated. World Adventures is still new and there's a lot to learn!

  • Photolog - Capture 75 different subjects. This one shouldn't be too difficult with the list we have compiled below. Look for photos you've never taken and pursue them.
  • Architectural Eye - Capture 10 unique landmarks. This seems to be a catchall for buildings. While the subjects fall into different categories, places in town such as the bistro and school will count, while the Sphinx and dragon cave also count. I noticed a nice increase in photo value for all new buildings once I achieved this challenge.
  • Human Form Expert - Take shots of 50 unique Sims. Photos of two's company or three's a crowd seem to count toward this. This should help with photograph prices for Sim-related photos across the board. Sims in action, Sims around town and unique types of Sims such as firefighters will likely see a price boost.
  • Paparazzi - You must not know the Sim you're photographing to work toward this challenge. Locals in the travel destinations in world adventures are good candidates, along with those around your Sim's home town.
  • Shutter Nut - Complete 5 photo collections to complete this challenge. Afterward, it will make all future photos free (increasing profit from each shot).

If you complete these challenges, join us at the Sims 3 Forum to post your theories on exactly what they do for your Sim. Perhaps a patch will improve the photography skill journal in the future and give us a hint.

The Sims 3 World Adventures Photography: A screenshot of a Mummy

Photo Collections Sims Can Complete
There's a lot of data here. Its purpose is to help you unlock the photo categories easier. Some photos in a collection are inevitably low value, but the first time shots will earn plenty of money to ensure you aren't running at a loss. Be sure to bring the best camera when you're going for rare shots of doubly dead, travel destinations and other odd shots.

Note that there is no bonus money made from completing a collection, and you can feel free to sell photos before you've collected them all.

The Sims 3 Pets adds two new collections to the game, Animal Kingdom and Pets in Action:

Animal Kingdom

DeerPet in a Cage
BirdieMy Pet
A DogA Cat
A HorseHorse and Rider
A Zoo!Baby Animals

Pets in Action

Pet CemetaryCute Cat
Dead BirdDeath Riding
Talking BirdShow Jumping
Dog TricksHeroic Horse
Clever CatTug of War

Now on to the regular Photography collections. Some of these are updated to include items from other Expansion Packs.

Still Life

Nectar & FoodFlowers
CouchVideo Game System
TombstoneCandles
ObjectsTelevision
Box of TissueGarden Decorations

This is one of the easiest collections to complete. Most of the subjects here can be found around Sunset Valley.


Family & Friends

My SpouseFamily Member
3 of my FriendsHousemate
Ghostly FamilyMy Main Squeeze
My ChildMy Friend
Two of my FriendsMy Grandchild

Getting a picture of a ghost family member, love interest and child could be the hardest for solo Sims. This collection encourages you to have a family, that or WooHoo with strangers and visit the baby.


Everyday Moments

Child Being CarriedA Sim Gardening
Lovers at NightSim using a Computer
Pizza DeliverySomeone Painting
Police OfficerChessmatch
Mail CarrierRemedy for a Hot Day
FirefighterTwo's Company
Political DemonstrationMaid at Work
A Sim in the Area4 Sims Eating
A Group of SimsA Sim Fishing
Kid playing with ToyboxPhoto of Photographer
Repairman on the JobThree's a Crowd
Kid playing with OvenBabysitter
A Sim Cooking

A large collection that's not as easy to complete because of all the various actions you need to catch Sims involved in. Keep a sharp eye for Sims doing things involved in this list and whip out the camera.


Home Sweet Home

FurnitureBaby Stuff
Gadgets GaloreKitchen Kitsch
A Nice GardenToys & Hobbies
Cute Teddy BearBathroom Stuff
Home Décor (2 objects)2nd Home Decor (Ambitions sculpture.
A toiletOutdoor Stuff
A party (with party objects)

Another easy collection to complete because the stuff is found all over town. I don't recommend buying the stuff just to get a picture because it will result in lost money.


Around Town

A PartyThe Gym
The BistroGrocery Store
BicycleSchool
The ParkThe Spa
CarPolice Car
Places in TownDiner
PicnicThe Beach

Easy, easy collection to pursue. See what you're missing and snag those last shots.


The Sims 3 World Adventures Photography: The Soulpeace Statue within the Egyptian Great Sphinx

Travel

A PyramidPushable Statue
Shower in a CanSnake Charmer
Pile of Ancient CoinsRelic
Pile of RubbleLovers in France
Floor TrapSarcophagus
The Great SphinxLovers in Egypt
Lovers in ChinaSoulpeace Statue
Treasure ChestAbu Simbel
Giant BoulderTorch of Anubis
Floor SwitchDragon Cave

It'll be vital to bring a camera while inside tombs to complete this collection. The soulpeace statue is found within the Sphinx, which seems only accessible if you're cursed by the mummy or able to use tranquil transference or Zeneport from martial arts.


Oh, the Calamity!

One Sick SimSoaked to the Bone
A Social WorkerA Fight
Slap FightsThe Repoman
A ThiefA Singed Sim
Oh No, Snake!
A tough one in some aspects. You could get the social worker by attempting to adopt a baby then cancelling the process.


Collectables

Luminorous GemMercury Vial
OpalIron
Pink DiamondChina Statue Set
GeodeSilver
White DiamondCanopic Jar Set
GoldMagic Gnome
TiberiumEgyptian Statue Set
QuartzSpace Rock
Rainbow GemDangerous Creatures Statue Set
TopazDropa Stone Set
MummitoriumCopper

Snag photos of these gems and metals you find to work on this one, before you sell them. Dropping them on the ground seems to work just fine. They'll be easier to capture if you can place them far from other potential subjects.

Architectural & Buildings Collection

General HospitalChinese Garden
BookstoreSports Stadium
City HallAcademy
The MarketFrench Market
MausoleumNectary
Town Theatre

Again, look for the destinations in your skill journal that you haven't yet covered and head there.


Doubly Dead Sims 3 World Adventures - Paranormal Threesome

Paranormal Collection

Mummy Having a SnackMy Dead Spouse
A Ghostly ProblemSimply Death
A MummyA Serious Ghost Problem
A GhostWondering Ghost
My Dead EnemyToo Many Ghosts
Doubly DeadIt's Haunted
Death on Vacation

A tough category to be sure. Doubly dead will be hard, and getting Death on Vaction may be challenging as well. Be ready to whip out that camera when a Sim dies in a foreign location. Doubly dead requires a shot of a ghost mummy, a tough find. You'll need to get control of a mummy using a sarcophagus of kings and an offering with the canopic jar collection and wait or inspire the mummy to die. Good luck with that one. Share a shot at out our forum.


Best in Class Collection

A LimoSuperstar
A Money TreeExpensive Stereo
SupercopNectar Rack
OmniplantLuxury car
A Top ChefChief Lifesaver
Military BigwigDiplomat Extraordinaire
Master CriminalFancy Tent

These can be hard. Look for luxury cars parked in town at other Sims' homes. You may need to grow some of these to effectively catch them. Look for Sims leaving work destinations in uniform to try to get the rest. An omni-plant shot should be possible outside the science facility.


Plants & Flowers Collection

Apple TreeFlame Plant
Cherimola Blan Grape VineLife Plant
Renoit Grape VineBell Pepper Plant
Onion PlantPotato Plant
Lettuce PlantHydrangea
Cranerlet Nuala Grape VineWhite Rose
Tomato PlantRed Rose
Plum treeGarlic Plant
Pomegranate TreeDeath Flower
Meloire Grape VineSunflower
Averlino Grape VineGralladina Grape Vine
Watermelon PlantLime Tree

So many plants to take photos of. It shouldn't be too hard. Find most of them in gardens around town and the travel locations. See my Plant List for World Adventures fruits. You'll likely need to do a little searching if you don't have a garden of your own. If your Sim is adept at Gardening, you can just grow your subjects. Single out plant types in your garden layout to make capturing them easier.


The Sims 3 World Adventures Photography: Watch for Sims in Action to get shots of them doing things like breaking boards.

Sims in Motion Collection

Honing Body and MindGet a Room!
Refreshing SwimPleading to Sphinx
Sims DancingRunning
Making NectarSim Making the Bed
Playing CatchGreat Tunes
Pushing StatueDumpster Diving
Sims SparringSolo Dancer
Board BreakerFighting Flab
Fighting a Fire

You'll really need to keep a sharp eye for Sims doing any of these actions as you go along. Dumpster diving seems tough. Like many of the others that involve other Sims, it might be easiest if you have a Sim under your control. In the previous example, a Journalist Sim could help you get this shot.

The Sims 3 World Adventures
ChinaEgyptFranceMartial ArtsNectar Making
PhotographyMummiesPangu's AxeTomb Raiding TipsTomb Building






Comments (44)

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Tiffany says...
Is this list up to date?
28th March 2014 12:36am
Spade says...
where can I find all the captured photo from thr Hikon QX40 camera that my sims captured?
24th September 2012 7:32pm
alex says...
click on the camera in your sims' inventory and select 'see photos' or something like that, or you can select 'take all photos' and hang them on the wall or put them on a table...
28th October 2012 4:52pm
Nichole says...
Anyone know the easiest way to get a picture of the park or the diner? When I go to a park it either doesn't say anything or it reacts only to the furniture or toys. At the diner it either doesn't say anything or it just says places in town without specifying that it is the diner. Any help is appreciated, thanks.
Admin:
What town are you in and do you have seasons?
23rd July 2013 1:46am
Nichole says...
I'm currently in Twinbrook though I've had this issue with all my towns that I've had a photographer in. Yes I do have Seasons. I have all worlds except University.
Admin:
Twinbrook diner will never show up. it's a known bug from the first week since Twinbrook came out.  For the park one - place the showtime performance park to get it.  Seasons gives us festival lots which cease to be parks.
23rd July 2013 1:51am
Nichole says...
I forgot to ask in my previous post but what items qualify for the bathroom stuff in the home sweet home collection? I've tried grouping a sink, shower, mirror and towel rack together but it doesn't say anything. If I add a toilet it just says toilet not bathroom stuff. Thanks.
Admin:
Try a toilet paper roll and the towels with maybe the medicine cabinet.
23rd July 2013 1:56am
Alli says...
hi um i'm also having some problems? every time my sim tries to take a picture for an adventure, i can't deliver it because i "don't have the required items in my inventory." i've tried taking the photo out of the camera and renaming it, and i'm not sure if i'm doing something wrong or if it's a game glitch.
30th July 2013 12:31pm
Kate says...
I'm in isla paradiso and i can't get a picture of the bookstore. No matter where i stand it just comes up as Autumn Leaves. Help please!"
11th September 2013 6:15pm
TnT-Terry says...
Hi my question is about the bistro opportunity I received in Riverview. My sim is in the journalism career level 9 who is level 5 photograpy and level 6 cooking as well. She got the opportunity call from the bistro wanting 5 photos from Champs Les Sims to spruce up their diningroom and they would pay for the trip and the pics. I have taken pics all over Champs les Sims...objects, buildings, landscapes, gardens...etc...and still don't have a single pic counted for the challenge. Does anyone know what spacific pics are needed for this? It's driving me insane lol, have googled and searced this site and wiki and nothing remotely close to this. Please help if you can. Thanks
23rd September 2013 6:46am
Andrea says...
I just purchased midnight hollow and my sims lifetime wish is visionary. I have just learned the photography skill, but whenever I try to use my camera (phone or base camera) I take the picture and it acts like it works but when I go to look at pictures nothing is there. Also when I look at the photography skill it says that I haven't taken any photos. Any ideas?
27th September 2013 9:49pm
Nadia says...
Hi - I'm working on the "around town" photo collection, and all I need is a police car, but I just can't seem to find one - any ideas?
8th October 2013 5:31pm
Kikkio says...
Try to call police by cell phone. You will probably have to pay some simoleons because you dont need them, but there should be time for you to take photo of their car.
11th October 2013 8:16pm
Megan says...
Where can you buy the cameras?
1st February 2014 4:40pm
stallias says...
I have both WA & UL and I don't know if this is specific to having both games installed or if it's part of a UL patch or something, but every time I've made a new game and moved my newly created Sims into a lot, they start off with a camera in their inventory. It ISN'T from WA, because I don't recognize it. I think it's a cheap model of camera. I don't know if Townies come with one or even what happens when the next generation is brought in. I just know this is a new development as of installing UL and I thought I'd tell ya'll about it.
17th April 2014 3:15am
Amee says...
my sim wants me to buy a better camera where do i find them??
Admin:
If you have World Adventure and Ambitions, you can find the two higher end cameras at the consignment shop. Otherwise you need to buy them in Egypt. Only players with World Adventures can get the better cameras.
20th June 2013 5:06pm
Christie says...
I have a challenge in Egypt where i need to get a picture of a specific sim for a dating website or something. Every time i take one, its under the category 'my friend', but it doesn't count it as a photo of the sim. How do i get it to work? Do i need to do a certain type of camera shot like a portrait or something? Help pleaseeee! I need it to continue a pretty important tomb adventure, and its SO annoying! :(
31st May 2013 4:31pm
Anna says...
You have to "view photos" on your camera then move the photo of the sim to your sim's inventory, then it should work to give it to the target sim :)
16th June 2013 3:48am
Bridget says...
I have a similar problem, and I tried that, and it still doesn't work.
20th October 2013 3:48pm
Emma says...
I think you you have to use the "Ask to Pose" social
17th February 2014 3:38pm
TheRealMortimer says...
I had this problem, and found out you have to have an empty camera before taking the picture. Even though the camera will continue taking pictures there apparently is a cap and if there are too many pictures on the camera, the game will not recognize the picture. Delete or sell all the pictures (be sure to pull any down to your inventory you may want to keep), then take the picture. You should be able to then view the pictures, and pull it to your inventory to give to the person.
1st June 2014 10:39am
Lina says...
After the "Late Night" expansion I can't get a photo of "Nectary" in France. It comes up as a hotspot instead.
Anyone have a solution? It's highly irritating.
31st October 2012 10:41am
Sara says...
Hi!

It does that for me as well!! So annoying! But what you can do is to rechange a buidling site, like go to the inventory for common places and just place out like a library or something and then switch the buidlings purpose, like from "library" to"nectary" and then take a pic of the library as the nectary and you will complete that goal in the Architectural & Buildings Collection :) and afterwards you can just delete the buidling or whatever you feel for. Hope this tip helped you out! :)
21st November 2012 4:40pm
Mike says...
Be sure you have a camera with you when you do this. The first time you go to France, before sunset, take a picture of the Nectary. It will register as "Nectary." Once the sun sets, it becomes a "Hotspot."
11th December 2012 11:10am
Dot says...
I've got similar problem. I can't take a photo of a spa and restaurant... any ideas? I was trying to switch names of the biuldings but it doesn't work :/
28th November 2012 6:16pm
mary says...
I've been having the same problem. did you resolve yours?
3rd October 2013 9:39pm
Nichole says...
I'm having difficulty with the Sunflower part of the plants & flowers. I've tried the two you can place in build mode and the newest one from the greenhouse that gives sun petals but none of them register as a sunflower for the camera. Anyone know what does?
29th January 2013 7:39am
paika says...
try the 'blossoming sunflower vase' from buy\decor\plants section, it costs just 70 simoleons. both the buy and build versions register on my camera, so maybe this is your game's problem specifically, but give it a shot.
11th April 2013 11:02pm
Nichole says...
Thanks I tried that. I just figured it out with a different Sim in a different town that I needed the big Sunflower that is in build mode but it can't be too close to anything else and I have to kind of start the focus from the ground rather that at the top.
23rd July 2013 1:49am
Cyndi says...
is there any way to take a screenshot and turn it into an in game photo? I had a wedding but bride was the only photographer there so i used screenshots. would love to hang them on the sims wall if possible.
12th February 2013 6:00pm
HelpingSimmer says...
Hi~
HelpingSimmer here.

I am sorry to say that you can't hang it on your wall as a screenshot. :(
if you have "world adventures" or "university life" Then it wouldn't be that hard to take a picture with the phone or camera you got from a sim of yours <3

I hope it helped, have a nice day <33
2nd February 2014 12:48pm
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