Oh, so you're a photographer?

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by PeterToronto, Jul 7, 2010.

  1. PeterToronto

    PeterToronto TPF Noob!

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    Greetings guys

    This is from my most recent blog post, but I'd love it if you could contribute a few of your own lines, both serious and humorous.

    "Oh, so you're a photographer?" If you've been doing this for a few years, you've undoubtedly heard those words uttered by people that you've crossed paths with. Some people proceed to genuinely show an interest in your profession, and your images. However, with others, there's the underlying tone and expectation that you'll do them a favour...free of charge of course. You are a really nice guy after all.

    You need to draw the line and have a quick response to this very leading inquiry, especially if you sense that the individual expects a freebie. Engaging in this discussion can lead to nothing but an uncomfortable and tenuous exchange, unless you are properly armed. Forgive me, but in a way you really are going into battle.

    In order to prevent hurt feelings, or a misunderstanding of any sort, equip yourself with a few of the following lines:

    "Yes, I am a photographer. Here's my business card. Feel free to call me at your convenience, so that I can discuss some pricing options with you."

    "Yes, I am a photographer. I would love it if you'd check out my website to get an idea of what services I provide, and what I charge clients."

    "Yes, I am a photographer. Would you be interested in hiring me?"

    "Yes, I am a photographer. What do you do for a living?" Deflecting things away from yourself is always a good approach. If you feel a bit cheeky, you can at this point immediately ask them to do some work for you...gratis of course.

    "No, I'm a lawyer." That should turn them right off! Just kidding, I'd love some legal assistance right about now...free of charge of course.

    As always, if you enjoyed the read, there's more to view on my website.

    Peace
    Peter

    peter anthony PHOTOGRAPHY - Home
     
  2. NateS

    NateS TPF Noob!

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    How about

    "Yes, I'm a photographer. If you ever turn into a bug, give me a call."
     
  3. D-B-J

    D-B-J Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Yeah, i'm a photographer with alot to learn, care to be a model, free of charge?

    orr

    You are a photographer, right? I'd like to hire you for some simple and casual shots of so and so

    Sure! I'd be glad to. However, i won't accept any payment until you review and are happy with the photos.


    The second one is how its gone for me so far.
     
  4. Warren Peace

    Warren Peace TPF Noob!

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    I usually pretend I cant speak english, so I dont have to listen to all his BulLsheeit. :er:
     
  5. Antithesis

    Antithesis No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I don't see how it's that hard to explain that you do this for a living. Unless it's a friend or close relative, I don't see how I'd be steamrolled into doing something for no charge or exchange.
     
  6. magkelly

    magkelly TPF Noob!

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    I'm not even a pro and I get that all the time. People see me with what they assume is a more professional digital camera than the one they own and they immediately get all sorts of bogus ideas about me doing their weddings, modeling portfolios, baby pics etc for free. I don't even have the camera for that, but it doesn't seem to matter where some people are concerned.

    I've been known to do a free shoot for very close friends, but otherwise, no way am I going to go there. You start doing people for free all the time and they will never get the idea that it's time to pay you even when you've finally gone pro. They will still want some other set of family pictures taken and they will expect you to do it for free "since you did it for us once before."

    It's one thing to swap services, give a model the pictures on disk for the use of his/her image. It's another entirely to shoot and just give the photos away. Some people are okay about it. They'll tip you at least for doing a job and see to it that you get a meal maybe if it's a long shoot. Others? Give them one inch and they'll take 50 miles!

    I once had a woman I worked for just assume that because I had done some baby pictures for my Godson's mom gratis that I would eagerly step up to do them for her daughter's baby and another niece's baby when they arrived. She was very put out at the idea that I actually wanted to be reimbursed for my time. When I said I wasn't going to be able take the jobs unless we could come to some sort of arrangement for fees she made a huge stink at work about it and treated me very badly from then on.

    Funny thing? She didn't think twice about me being paid for it when I was sitting in that chair answering the company phone or doing computer work for her. So why on earth wouldn't I want to be compensated for my time outside of that job if it requires me to put in several hours of work that actually takes a lot more skill than the job done done by me as an office clerk? It's okay apparently to ask to be paid to type and answer a phone, but not to take baby pictures?

    I actually have cards printed up with my name phone number and a professional logo. I usually just tell the person asking I'm a student but if they want to have me take pictures I gladly will, but that I expect to be paid $12 an hour with a minimum of 3 hours whether I work that long or not, and I let them know that when I do go pro they're welcome to call me again but that my fees will have increased accordingly.

    I just figure that right now as a student I at least have the right to make as much as any good office clerk. As a professional photographer I expect to make quite a bit more of course, but that is my minimum, for now, and I do let them know that I am simply not available to do any job that my current level of equipment can't handle, period.

    Usually that cuts them off at the pass pretty quick if all they want a "freebie" photographer. If not, I'm perfectly willing to work for $12 an hour while I learn so long as my gear can handle what they want me to do. I don't often do free shoots though. At the very least I'm bartering.

    I don't believe in giving away any of my skills away for free, at least not very often. People just don't respect me as being even semi-professional when I do that. It's been my experience that if I charge something, even if it's a low fee they will take me far more seriously than they would otherwise.

    People respect what they have to pay for, shrug.
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2010
  7. DennyCrane

    DennyCrane No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    "Oh, landscapes are just a hobby. My paying job is porn photography."
     
  8. aejoso

    aejoso TPF Noob!

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    :thumbup: :lmao:
     
  9. Mike_E

    Mike_E No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Why yes, I am. What do you do?

    Really? Could I get a free ...?

    "And we're walking!"
    ;)
     
  10. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    "No I'm a terrorist"
     
  11. ghache

    ghache TPF Noob!

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    HAHAHAHAHAH nice
     
  12. Morpheuss

    Morpheuss TPF Noob!

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    Yes I'm a photographer. It's just a hobby though. Hopefully one day it will get me some money... then they usually stop talking because once I talk about getting some money usually they get the clue that I won't do stuff for free.
     

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