I'm just full of questions

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by Sweetsomedays, Nov 18, 2007.

  1. Sweetsomedays

    Sweetsomedays TPF Noob!

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    I have a bit of a situation I want to handle correctly and not burn bridges.
    I have offered 10 free sessions to build my portfolio that include 1 free 8x10 if they sign a release. They are welcome to order prints but not required to. A woman has asked me to take some pictures of her family, 15 people in all. She wants large group shots, indivudual family shots, couple shots, kid shots. Both indoors and outdoors, at her home.
    I gave her my prices 4x6- $4, 5x7-$6, 6x8-$10, 8x10- $20, 11x14-$25, 12x18-$30, $10 for a sheet of 8 wallets. $15 for first CD image $10 for each additional image, includes copyright release.

    I got this e-mail back,

    "I thought since you were still building your portfolio the prices would be very inexpensive. These prices are higher than a studio. I also thought part of the deal was us letting you use our photos. I have done this before and retained an untouched CD of the shoot for the use of the pictures in the artists portfolio. What are your thoughts?"

    I feel like she's trying to take advantage of this situation. I am willing to compromise but don't want to be taken advantage of. I had mentioned to her previously that I was going to put a package together since she indicated they wanted to order so many prints. But now I am kind of annoyed. I understand I am still starting out, she is totally correct this is to build my portfolio. I have much to learn, but my pictures arent crap and this is a big group (to me anyway).
    I don't want to handle this incorectly and I don't want to burn bridges just when I am getting going. Customer service is very important to me and I view her as just that, a customer. It's worth it to mo swollow my pride and do this at cost if thats the right thing to do.
     
  2. Christina

    Christina TPF Noob!

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    well i dont feel that your prices are to high, esp. for a family shoot of this size, i would maybe cut two bucks off each ( as long as that still covers your cost ) and see if she is happy with it.

    if you feel like your pictures are worth that then stuck to your guns... Ive seen your photo's, you do good work.

    tell her your charging for the prints, not the labor... maybe?
     
  3. jols

    jols TPF Noob!

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    ask her which studios are offering these prices and tell her you will check them out, i bet she comes up with nothing.

    i think she is just chancing her luck.

    are you charging a sitting fee? or doing that free

    a studios sitting fee is not cheap
     
  4. Sweetsomedays

    Sweetsomedays TPF Noob!

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    No...your wrong. Wal-mart is cheeper then me, but wal-mart pictures are a disgrace.
    I am not charging a sitting fee since they are signing the release to use these in my portfolio.
    I don't think my prices are unfair either. And the money they save from me not charging a sitting fee seems like it's worth the price for prints + the 1 free 8x10.
     
  5. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

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    Hold the line. Don't budge.
     
  6. Mike Jordan

    Mike Jordan TPF Noob!

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    I agree, don't lower your prices for this one. There is a lot of work involved in doing large groups and families. While there is nothing wrong with trying to save money and get a better deal, sometimes this is an indication of how they will be after you take the pictures and spend your money getthing them ready. She may find all kinds of things wrong with them and want you to re-shoot... not to mention once she gets her hands on a good copy, making a bunch of copies of that one and you still not making any money from it.

    Unless this session is really really going to help you make more money, you might want to pass it up completely and work with someone else that doesn't want so much for free.

    Do what makes the most sense for you. If you worry about burning bridges every time you make a business dicission, you will never make a good dicission.

    Mike
     
  7. JodieO

    JodieO TPF Noob!

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    Whoah!!! She thinks that is expensive? Uh... yeah... you may want to raise your prices (your work is fine), and just give a percentage off to port building.

    She would freak if she saw my 8x10s at $75 (which is still a tad on the low side).

    Oh, by the way... WalMart's individual 8x10s (not with a package), I believe, last time I checked, were $50 each... so if that puts anything in perspective for you - you need to RAISE THOSE PRICES!

    Unfortunately, you are at a time when you are going to attract the cheapies. When you eventually get to the place where you raise your prices, be ready to have a whole lot of people mad at you.

    That's why I typically do not shoot for friends or family or anyone even related to anyone I know - like, no school people (from my kids' school), etc. if I can help it.

    If you raise your prices to what is standard in your area but offer a significant discount for your port builders, it won't be such a shock when you drop the discount one day to go full force.

    If you don't act like a business, and instead, worry about hurting peoples' feelings or whatever, you will never be a success with it and you will burn out quick because you will be tired of giving your art away for free or for pennies.... you will grow to resent what you do.

    Oh, and lastly, you may want to do something like 5x7s and under the same price... and make them higher in price. If not, you will have a lot of people getting ready to scan a bunch of 4x6s at $6 each... you will be losing a TON of money.
     
  8. JIP

    JIP No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Well you are either going to stand firm against a bully who thinks she can take advantage of you since you are new or you need to fold and change your prices. If you think your work is worth the money you charge you need to stand behind our prices.
     
  9. DoofClenas

    DoofClenas TPF Noob!

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    Don't budge...I just paid a hell of a lot more than that for some pregnancy photos of the wife.
     
  10. wildmaven

    wildmaven TPF Noob!

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    First of all, this woman is asking too much. When I did my free 8x10 shoots, they knew that the sitting and the 8x10 were ALL they were getting for free. I am just starting out and I charge $100/hour sitting fee and my 8x10's are $20. What they are getting is a $120 value, more if it takes longer than an hour. That's enough compensation for you using their image in your portfolio. If she doesn't like it, she can take a walk.

    I do believe you shouldn't charge per image on a CD. I charge $200 for the entire shoot's UNTOUCHED images, more if they are post processed. This keeps them from taking a cheap CD and running off to walmart for prints.

    Marian
     
  11. RKW3

    RKW3 TPF Noob!

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    All this talk makes me want to do this photography for a business when I grow older haha. But jeez I'm not experienced at all with this portrait stuff, I better get practicin huh?

    Good luck with your business Sweetsomedays!
     
  12. JodieO

    JodieO TPF Noob!

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    Yikes, I just reread about the CD - do NOT give her a CD... who cares if she got one before, that's not your problem... I guarantee you the person who gave her teh CD never ended up with a legit business and folded.

    Just for a comparison sake, I sell a CD for $3,000. I have actually had some takers - go figure!
     

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