Miners pursue valuable and useful ores, extracting them straight from the earth with their picks. Their familiarity with the land gives them a strong notion of where rich veins of gold, silver or even more precious metals can be found, and they retrieve and smelt these minerals for profit, or for use in metalworking of all types.
Miners can spot mineral veins on their mini-map with the Find Minerals ability, and they can gather them quickly (by simply right-clicking on the vein). Miners require mining picks in order to break apart stones and retrieve valuable ores, and, in order to smelt those ores into bars, they need to be near a forge (found in most cities). As you continue to exercise your mining skills and smelt complex combinations of ores into alloys, your Mining skill will grow. High skill values are required to successfully retrieve the rarest minerals.
Mining is a gathering profession. It's often paired with complementary crafting professions, particularly Blacksmithing, Engineering and Jewelcrafting.
Minerals can be found all over Azeroth, though some areas are more mineral-rich than others. Valuable and rare minerals are often difficult to find, but the rewards are worth it - they can command high prices and form potent metals.
Activate your 'find minerals' ability while wandering the world to identify mineral veins.
When you find a mineral vein, walk up to it with a mining pick in your inventory, and click on the vein to gather minerals.
You'll receive a small cache of loot, including ore and stone.
If you want to smelt ore for another profession (or to sell it), head to a forge (often found in cities and towns), click the 'smelting' icon on your professions menu, and choose the ores you'd like to smelt.