Newbie Pricing help!

Gevestro

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Hello :D

i have a situation. Recently, I took some pictures at a BBQ, just for my own uses, however my friend who was there loved the pictures I took of her son. So she actually ended up asking if I'd take family photos for her. I agreed excitedly, but of course the question of payment came up.

And that's where I'm stuck. I don't even know generally how payment goes for a photographer. Is it a solid price, a per picture deal, or something else?

i would love some advice how much to charge for my first real photo shoot.
Please keep in mind, I am a complete amateur. Basically I've got my camera with the kit lens, and a tripod, and that's it.

Thank you to all who reply!
 

pixmedic

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Given your equipment list, experience level, and lack of tax ID, i would recommend doing the pictures at no charge.

You dont have to be the most experienced photographer in the world to charge for your work. You dont have to have only the highest grade of equipment.

What you SHOULD have however, is just enough of both to be able to provide a consistently good picture under varying conditions. If you are not positive you can do this, wait to charge until you can.
 

tirediron

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What the Mustachio'd medic said!! ^^^ In addition you mentioned that this was a friend. There's no quicker way to ruin a friendship than to introduce business. Tell her you'll be glad to shoot them for her at no charge, BUT, if she's really pleased, she can treat you to a nice meal or a couple of movie-tickets or something similar as a thank-you.
 
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Gevestro

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I appreciate both of your replies, but I forgot to mention that she was the one who offered to pay me.
 

cgipson1

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I appreciate both of your replies, but I forgot to mention that she was the one who offered to pay me.

Doesn't matter... do it for practice! It is unlikely your skills are at a professional level, based on your own statements above. There are way too many people out there charging with minimal skills as it is.. why be be better than they are, and wait until your skills justify charging?

Do you have flash /strobes? Modifiers? reflectors? Do you know how to use them? Even so-called "natural" light photography benefits from fill, and diffuser use..
 

lmoser

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It's never to soon to start charging for your work. Find out what other photographers are charging for family photos in your area and charge accordingly.
 

cgipson1

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It's never to soon to start charging for your work. Find out what other photographers are charging for family photos in your area and charge accordingly.

Really? Even if the work is very low quality? I suppose if you can find someone willing to pay for it, that justifies selling it.. no matter how bad it is, right? Look at Facebook... all sorts of really CRAP photography from people that charge... mainly because people have no clue and neither do most of those photographers (or should I say "Camera Owners" since that is a more accurate description?)

I see you are a "blogger"! I checked out your images there...
 
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tirediron

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It's never to soon to start charging for your work. Find out what other photographers are charging for family photos in your area and charge accordingly.
Sorry, but that's just plain wrong! FAR too many people start charging for their "work" before they should. No comment toward the OP, as we have no idea of his/her work, but charging for services implies a certain level of skill and knowledge. Without those, yes, it is too soon.
 

bunny99123

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I never charge family or friends even if they offer. I just give them a finish disk. As stated before money can ruin a good relationship. My friends have been by my side through a lot of situations, so they deserve the best I can give them. Sharing is caring.
 

Tee

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Instead of payment ask them for a $25 gift card to Amazon. Then you can use the gift card towards something photography specific like books and videos.
 
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Gevestro

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Alright, thank you for all your replies. I understand now :) and I think I'll do what most of you suggest, and use this as an opportunity to practice and get better!
 

KmH

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I'm with lmoser, the "charge accordingly" part is where you take your experience level and image quality into account.

There are almost as many retail photography pricing models as there are retail photographers.

I recommend charging a 'sitting' fee, plus a charge for the images you make.
Remember that doing portrait photography is a luxury service.

I charged everyone my full rate. Immediate family and friends got an invoice that included a 100% discount.
I make a distinction between a friend and an acquaintance. I can count my friends on the fingers of 1 hand, and have some fingers left over.
I have hundreds of acquaintance, all who paid full charge.
 

Tee

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C'mon Keith. You're equating your current practices with someone who's doing this for the first time.
 

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