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Keep Shooting! Photography Assignments (04 Feb 2013)
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charging for photoshoots
Just a couple of days ago, I was recommended to a lady who wanted pictures for her child's first birthday party. When she contacted me, I told her I would do it for 125, and include 20-30 pictures on a disk for her. She backed up and decided she didn't want them after I told her the price. I know I'm going to lose money at 125 after gas (over an hour away) and wear and tear on equipment. Does anybody have any ideas on how to charge, and have people still say yes? People seem to love my work, but don't want to pay for it. Any ideas? Thanks guys.
With a pro, you are getting just that - a pro. Someone who not only knows how to use the camera and post processing software, but someone who also knows exactly where to shoot from, how to pose people and all that.
You are completely correct in saying that there are far too many people who, just because they have an SLR, think they are God's greatest gift to photographers. They then usually end up doing a wedding shoot and either ruining someone's wedding photos completely or giving the person totally average photos. I absolutely hate seeing "photographers" advertising using phrases like "professional photos at affordable prices!" or "my work is the same as a pros, but a lot cheaper". If their work was the same as a pro's, they would be a pro, and would charge like a pro.
I remember hearing a radio show a few years back on this very subject where people were calling in saying that to save money, they were using non-pro photographers to shoot their weddings. Everyone thought this was a great idea, until a real pro photographer sent in her work and compared it with the cheaper, so called "photographer's" work. There was no comparison.
You wouldn't hire an unqualified electrician or plumber to work in your house, and I certainty don't think that anyone would let an unqualified doctor operate on them; so why do people let incapable people take photos for them? It's no different in my opinion, you get what you pay for.
Sorry if this was a bit of a rant, but it really gets on my nerves!
If there is a difference between your work Jerry (you're not a beginner) and a pro's work, imagine the difference between a novice and a pro's work. They described some of the cheaper "photographer's" work on the radio show and apparently there was rubbish in the foreground of some images, wonky camera angles, people posed directly into the sun - the list went on, it was laughable.
I wouldn't shoot a wedding ever. It's simple, I am not good enough to do it. I am not a pro, I rarely shoot photos of people and I couldn't take it on knowing that if I made a mess of it, I have single-handedly ruined someone's wedding. No way!
I'll say it again, pro photographers are worth paying for.
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