Dilemma...

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by tirediron, Nov 22, 2018.

  1. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    As some of you will doubtless remember, I've had a long-standing charity gig every end-November doing "pets with Santa" photos. I've been doing it with the same pet store (key sponsor) for almost ten years, and Vancouver Island Compassion Dogs, a specialist dog trainer which provides certified assistance dogs for Veterans with PTSD has been the recipient for the last while.

    During that time, we have built up a bit of a reputation as the 'Pets with Santa' event in town (there are altogether about a dozen different ones), and there are customers I've seen for many years, and some through more than one pet. In the past, until last year we've always had a vacant store in the mall in which the pet store is located to shoot in which has worked well.

    This year (and last), we're shooting in a hotel lobby. Last year it was fine, we were able to do what we wanted in terms of set decoration, but this year the hotel has redecorated and I've got two choices. I can shoot towards the large high windows of the entrance (big windows and strobes... a match made in heaven. NOT!) or I can shoot the opposite way into a blank wall for the right half of the frame and the main hallway toward the rooms (always full of guests as this is a main hotel for Victoria airport)... There's a slim chance we're going to be able to get a background that will make the problems go away, but I'm not holding my breath...

    The dilemma: (Saying this sincerely and not meaning to brag) Many of the people coming are coming because I'm the photographer and they know they're going to get a professional quality image for their $15 "donation". Unfortunately because of the set limitations, I'm not sure I can deliver on that... I can't back out on the charity, because in addition to that being a hugely s**tty thing to do, the charity is affiliated with Wounded Warriors Canada, of which I am a VERY strong supporter... but this is my reputation, and I do get business from this.... I can't disappoint the charity, and I can't say to each customer, "Sorry your pictures are crap this year, but it's because..." They are naturally going to assume that any quality issue is my responsibility...

    So........... if I can't pull a rabbit out of a hat at the last minute, what do I do?????


     
  2. Designer

    Designer Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Dang!
     
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  3. Designer

    Designer Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Let's hope for the backdrop.
     
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  4. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    If a change of location isn't an option, what about asking the hotel if they'd allow you to use a meeting room? After explaining the problems, you could also play it up as better for them. Less congestion in the lobby, less chance of accidents, etc, etc. Give them a tax write off for comping the room. Get creative. If they won't then it might be better to foot a room out of your pocket and call it advertising. Then make sure the location next year is more accomodating
     
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  5. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    That's genius! E-mail sent to the manager.
     
  6. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Hope it works. Being on the board of a rural fire district that gets less then 40% of its operating budget from tax dollars I had to learn to be very creative and persistent with getting things comped. Been several times I had to bite the bullet and reach in my pocket also. :culpability:
     
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  7. Designer

    Designer Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    A BIG meeting room with a 20-foot-high ceiling, and free coffee service and bottles of water.

    I mean; as long as you're asking.
     
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  8. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    I once went in to ask for a few tools from a local farm supply to include in a fund raising raffle for the FD, walked out with a new Stihl chain saw. You always go big to start!!!!!!!!!
     
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  9. dennybeall

    dennybeall No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If they are reluctant I would try to work the hotel name or logo into every shot somehow.
     

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