$1000/year for 1 photo!!?

dipstick

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The idea about charging according to how much money the client has sounds really odd too me. As long as it is commercial work, you charge for the usage you are selling. And you charge according to your price list or whatever pricing system you have.

If his price is $1000 then that's what he's charging. There is normally room for some negotiation on the price, but you are free to not buy it if you don't want it.

A gallon of milk costs the same no matter if you make a $100k or $20k a year. You can of course give away both milk and photos as charity, but charging more just cause your client is loaded seems rather unethical to me.

I have no opinion if $1000 was too much in this case, as we have not seen the photo or really know the exact usage the photographer quoted.
 

dipstick

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So your telling me if you shoot product shots at $100 per shot and Mcdonalds knocks on your door and says we want you to shoot our new burger you are only going to charge them $100. That is not smart business.

You still charge for usage.

Chances are that MCD would license the image for more usage than a local restaurant.

Get the point?
 

Mesoam

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to the people criticizing the charge difference between large and small company's you are really just putting your feet in your mouth...its just how commercial photography or commercial anything works...
 

Fate

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i cant believe D-50 sparked up all this over one commission. Essentially he can charge what he wants. If someone is charging a large amount for something, then surely D-50 has every right to offer something better... even more so as it was a favor. If the photographer is good enough to charge 1k per year for a pic of a fast food place, then she should'nt have issues finding business else where.

I think people have been a bit to quick to judge D-50. A one off favor is not going to put everyone out of business.
 

hawkeye

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agreed

Supply and demand ladies and gentleman... lets not forget the open market principals
 

dangerdoormouse

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I suspect people have been quick to judge D-50 because he posted this on the thread. If he didn't want to be judged then he needn't have told.
 

RacePhoto

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to the people criticizing the charge difference between large and small company's you are really just putting your feet in your mouth...its just how commercial photography or commercial anything works...

Yes and No.

I sell a product with an advertised price and the price is the same for everyone. If some independent walks in and pays cash, I may give a discount, but basically, everyone else pays the same price.

Medical, lawyers and psychologists and many other professional services, will charge on the ability to pay, so there's an example of a sliding scale, and everyone doesn't pay the same price.

If Sears comes up to company E and says we want to buy 10,000 of your widgets, you better believe, they will get a better price than if I want to buy one. Lets say a buyer buys in volume, but needs only one widget, he'll get a discount because of the business relationship. We won't.

I sell photos to publications for "standard rate and data" which is the going rate for that publication. Some other magazine may pay more or less. A newspaper may pay more or less. They set the prices, based on size used, I don't.

The original photographer probably charged his standard rate for a one year license for a high quality professional product. I'll assume he gets that rate elsewhere, so no problem. The buyer has the option to accept or reject the quote... and they decided to use someone else's bid.

You go to Mr. Big portrait photographer for the stars and you are going to pay more than if you go to Mom's corner portrait studio. Neither one is going to drive the other out of business, because they market to a different client base.

What's my point. There's no cut and dried answer to the pricing question, even though some people here can do that or criticize someone else, all in one sentence.

I personally don't believe in giving work away, unless it's for charity groups. Friends get a better price. (oh I left that out above didn't I?) If one of the places I work asked me for a photograph, they would get a better price than if some stranger wanted a similar shot.

Pretty simple in the end. D-50 did someone he knew a favor. No BFD!

ps I like crab cakes, what's with that? :D
 
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D-50

D-50

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I too like crab cakes, I was making a comment to dominic though who came in at the end of this thread and added a pointless comment. his profile says he is from maryland and thats a big crab place.
 

Mesoam

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Race - of course there are exceptions to just about anything
 

therustytracks

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mj5IV23g-fE

"and the problem is, there's so goddamn many [photographers] who have no idea that they're supposed to be paid every time they do something-- they do it for nothing."


that's why there needs to be some type of guild for photographers. Just like the writer's guild. They banded together to try and gain a larger profit from tv series dvds. photographers should band together to create a collective that sets standards and prices. Even if it was on a local basis it would work. Because if you've got joe shmo taking pictures for 5 bucks and a professional with a studio making a living on photography alone who's charging $200 most people would pick joe over the pro. It would set a competitive edge in the market and people would chose quality photos and service over price. Either way some one doesn't get the shaft because of price.
 

dipstick

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Well, I don't really see the problem. Like others have pointed out, everyone i free to charge what ever they like. I know a lot of photographers that have no problem making a decent living from photography so there is still enough clients out there that are willing to pay for quality work.

The fact that "everyone" are photographers these days with their dslrs just means that photographers have to stand out by the quality of their work, not by their equipment. Everyone can be lucky and get a really good shot every now and then and sell it a microstock or to their own company, but my clients call me again and again cause both my quality and pricing is predictable for them.

Some of my clients I had for awhile are not even asking me for quotes anymore, they just tell me what they need, and they more or less now what I will charge.

The problem with changing your pricing schemes according to who the customer is that the customer paying a $1000 a photo is gonna start nag you once he finds out that you sold a similar photo for a buck to another company where he happens to know the manager.

So my advice is to find where your pricing level needs to be and price according to the type of job and usage. There is of course always room for negotiation, but if a client doesnt wanna pay, I don't give in on the price.

If you wanna work for free, there is plenty of non profit organizations to volunteer for.
 

TamiyaGuy

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I too like crab cakes, I was making a comment to dominic though who came in at the end of this thread and added a pointless comment. his profile says he is from maryland and thats a big crab place.
hehe, nice one :p

But on-topic, I think you're perfectly liable to charge depending on the size of the company. If you figure that they're going to make millions from your photograph, then you should be perfectly entitled to some of it. Obviously, there's a limit, but it's perfectly reasonable. It's merely business.

However, when it comes to personal photography, there should only be a flat rate (IMO). It would be unethical to make someone reach deeper into their pockets just because they have bigger ones. Companies, however, are another story.

But hey, I'm just a kid with a D40 and too much time on his hands. What would I know?:D
 

nossie

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You still sound like a weasel.
I second that (politely).

uhm sorry you wanted opinions about pricing but...

I think you took the bread and butter from the mans table. He found the client he did the hard work of motivating the client for the sale and then you gizumped him. It's legal but it's not nice.
I think you should have taken the next piece of work from your boss but not this one. I'm not having a go at you but I think what you did is distasteful but taste is a cultural thing anyway.

The price is the highest you can get someone to willingly pay. That is how we work on a daily basis as employees, I work for company A because it pays more than company B, even if money isn't the only remuneration. My time is available to the highest bidder.
 

sfaust

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Commercial photography is based on usage. Usage makes it fair for all buyers since smaller companies don't use photographs in the same way as a national one would. Joes barber shop will pay $50 in usage for an image in his brochure since its only distributed in a few local towns. Vogue magazine will pay $3,000 or more for a cover image because it will be distributed to hundreds of thousands. It doesn't matter if the image took the photographer 5 minutes to shoot, or 3 days. The usage is the same. The photographers day rate will cover the labor and expenses.

When I shoot for commercial clients, it is indeed a sliding scale based on the company size. Smaller companies pay a lot less, and deep pocket companies pay 20 times more. The reason isn't the size of their pocket book, but how they will use the images. Larger companies use images in much broader ways than a smaller company, and thus pay more for it.

If you produce a killer shot for Nike, they use it in all their advertising, in store displays, duratrans, web advertising, etc, and its going to help them sell millions of dollars in shoe sales, it's worth the $30K they pay in usage to the photographer. If the same photographer produces a similar piece for a local clothing retailer, and it's catchy enough to help drive customers to their store, and make an additional $10K in sales over the year, its worth every penny of the $800 they would pay in usage as well. Its not how deep their pockets are, but how the images are used, and the value it will bring to the client.

Musicians get more money playing to a stadium filled with 100K people than they do when they do a performance in front of 1,000 at a smaller venue. The songs are the same, it takes the same effort on their part, but the 'usage' is different. Same with advertising and commercial photography.

One more point I'd like to make. The employee that shot the same image for their company is being paid a salary, their computer was provided by the company, their desk, floor space, electric, phone, utilities, all paid for by the company. Health insurance, matching retirement funds, all covered. They don't need liability insurance, nor do they need to hire a lawyer, accountant, or business advisor as its all covered by their employer. They don't need to pay marketing, hire consultants to design web sites, etc.

They probably occupy a 10'x10' floor footprint, where a commercial photographer needs to recoup the costs of a 3,000sq ft footprint. The employee doesn't have to pay or maintain $50K in equipment, and replace it every 3 years when clients demand the latest and greatest.

And don't forget a photographer can't shoot 5 days a week. So they need to recoup all their costs in a 2-3 work week window. The other 2 or 3 days is for running the business, administration, maintaining the digital image archives, writing quotes for new jobs, creating marketing materials to keep work coming in, sending out invoices, paying the bills, taxes, collection agent, and sweeping the floor and putting a new coat of paint on the cyc wall. So when they quote $2,000 per day, its not $10K a week, but more like $4K. Makes a huge difference at the end of the year :)

So yea, $1,000 probably seems way to much for the employee. But for a commercial photographer running a studio, its not nearly enough.

Just some food for thought.

Stephen
Commercial Website, Blog
 

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