Pricing family photo shoot (not my family)

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by ginamc04, Oct 9, 2007.

  1. ginamc04

    ginamc04 TPF Noob!

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    Hello,
    This is my first post here! I'm a student at RISD for photography and have been taking photographs for years and years. I recently shot a First Birthday party for free as a favor & to gain some experience shooting an event of strangers. I got an email today from a friend of the "freebie" asking me what I would charge to shoot 9 family members on Thanksgiving weekend-adults & children-numerous poses and backgrounds.
    I have no clue! I don't want to go too too low and look cheap, but I don't want to go too high, since I'm not a pro.
    Also, a few of my professors have said that when they shoot an event, they charge for their time only, then give the CD of pictures to the customer (I'm sure they include the price in) so that the customer gets their own prints done. What do you all think of this practice?
    Thank you!
    gina
     
  2. Sideburns

    Sideburns TPF Noob!

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    good way to do it if you don't wanna make money....but if you're gonna wanna make money you usually charge for the pictures.
     
  3. AprilRamone

    AprilRamone TPF Noob!

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    Wow. I can't believe your professors gave you the advice of just giving them the cd! Like Sideburn said, that's a good way to not make money. It's actually a fairly common practice, but make sure you charge a good amount for the cd if you do this.
     
  4. wildmaven

    wildmaven TPF Noob!

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    I hate the idea of giving them CDs so they can print them someplace else. If the photo processor does a bad job, the people will think it is something that YOU did! If you do decide to give them CDs, I would print out a proof sheet, which shows the quality of your work so they can compare that to what they have done.
     
  5. ginamc04

    ginamc04 TPF Noob!

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    Thank you for your feedback. I hadn't even thought about a bad photo lab. Going from hobbiest to making money has opened up many questions and circumstances I hadn't thought of.

    When you started out, did you jump right into making "real" money or did you wean into it until you built a portfolio. I have plenty of landscape/seascape pictures, but not too many people, other than my son.

    Thanks again.
     
  6. RyanLilly

    RyanLilly No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I would schedule a set start and end time for the shoot, Include you time and a basic print package with CD. That way they have good prints that they bought from you and the option to have more made themselves. Maybe even go to the effort of including a large family print, matted and framed. They will really enjoy it, and possibly ask for you to print and frame some of the other photos rather than do it themselves.

    Ask If they would like a 4x6 framed for their office desk, a a larger framed print to send to grandma and grandpa.
     
  7. Mike_E

    Mike_E No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I generally give a CD along with the prints, and charge them for it.

    I charge by the hour plus expenses (would have to decide between double time and triple for a major holiday like that though) for portraits with a 1 hour minimum ($125). And I usually mark up the prints by 50% but I guarantee the prints for life against fading (with reasonable restrictions).
     

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