Wedding Pricing

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by mandabec, Mar 6, 2008.

  1. mandabec

    mandabec TPF Noob!

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    I was just wondering how do you price your wedding potography? I have never done one and have a friend begging me to do hers. I have no idea what to charge or how to come up with a price. Also I think I saw on here before someone posted a consultation sheet that they use with the bride. Anybody have such a thing?
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I've moved this out of the Gallery and into the 'Shop Talk' section for you.

    The range of prices in Wedding photography runs the full gamut from 'next to nothing' all the way to 'sky's the limit'.

    One of the biggest mistakes that new wedding photographers make, is setting their prices too low.

    That being said, this is a different situation because it's a friend and you have never done a wedding.

    The Common advice is to politely decline to do it. First of all, it isn't something to be taken lightly...it can be a daunting task and it could really put a strain on a friendship.

    Before I was set up to shoot wedding professionally (back up equipment and plenty of experience) I was asked several times by friends & family. What I did, was tell them to hire a pro for the essential parts (ceremony & formals) and then I would shoot the rest. Maybe that's an option for you.

    That being said, you have to start somewhere. Just make sure that you are prepared and set up with back up, in case something stops working during the wedding.

    As for pricing...that's a tough one.
    Maybe you could do it for nothing...make it your gift to her. Your reward is the experience of shooting a wedding. That might not be a great idea but it works for some people.
    Maybe you could look around at other photographers in the area and see what they charge...then set your price accordingly. That's what I'd tell someone who is getting into the business.

    Really, it's completely up to you. One thing to keep in mind is that if you charge little or nothing...you might be opening a can of worms. To get great photos (especially family group shots) it really helps to have the respect and attention of everyone there...and they respect you a lot more when they have paid you a large amount of money...but when the haven't...they might not be so inclined to cooperate with you for getting great photos.

    Either way, it would be a good idea to make up a contract and have them sign it. Outline what you are providing and how they are compensating you. This could really save a headache down the road.

    As for a consultation sheet...I have a sort of information sheet. Names, address, phone numbers, times, dates, locations etc. Then I have my contract, which I walk them through. Pretty simple.
     
  3. EOS_JD

    EOS_JD TPF Noob!

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    I would agree with everything Mike says. Weddings also take an awful lot of time and effort. People see a wedding pro shoot for a few hours and charge a fortune! They forget that the investment oin quality equipment - backups and all - is very significant, they also don't see the 20 hours that it can take to edit the images and design an album. They forget about the time for meetings, telephone calls, travel etc. Even charging £500 (that's $1000) I make less than £15 per hour!!
     
  4. JIP

    JIP No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I say charge them $2000 but only if you have never shot a wedding before if so then $5000.
     
  5. derekclapham

    derekclapham TPF Noob!

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    I agree with JIP, EOS and Big Mike.

    If you do decide to do it, or you get into weddings at a later date.
    It might help you get an understanding of what you really end up making per hour at the end of it all. Just substitute your values and it'll give you a rough idea.
     
  6. JimmyJaceyMom

    JimmyJaceyMom TPF Noob!

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    I did my first two weddings for free. And I'm glad i did them for free. I learned a lot and I made mistakes and I could never charge someone to do somethign that I wasn't sure I wouls be my best at. It was an excellent learning experience. I would do it for free. But I am a SUCKER! lol
     
  7. JIP

    JIP No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    That's sort of where I was going with my original post...
     

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