|12th of April 2005 (Tue)||#1|
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Leeds, UK
Have you stopped to work out what you need to charge to earn minimum wages? Take into account the cost of travelling to an event, value of equipment written down over two years and divided by the number of events in a year. Add to that whatever your country has for minimum wage per hour and the average number of hours for an event. Add 10% for sundries, like food and insurance etc. It will come to a surprisingly high number.
If you work on sales of prints, how many prints will you have to sell to break even? Can you sell enough to get into profit? Simple math, but it could bring you down to earth with a nasty bump. Some people think they are doing well with their sales because it isn't really a means of income for them, just a hobby and if they make a loss, so what, it is only fun after all. Others need their dollars/pounds to put bread on the table and know all about profit and loss. Remember, in my example, breaking even only gives you minimum wage and would you work for that?
I was going to name and shame some of our fellows here with what they are charging per print for certain events. You would be shocked, they charge less than it costs to have them lab printed, never mind adding in any other costs. I have checked a few of the websites and I was, well, stunned. When the difference is a factor of 20, that is they are charging one twentieth of the going rate, it becomes difficult to justify your price to the customer, even taking quality and talent into account.
For my work I don't have a major problem as the amateurs can't get the same access as I can, so they can't get the same types of shot. What is of concern though, is that they start to set customer's levels of expectation for pricing and every sale becomes a discussion about price instead of the quality of work.
I hope those that are charging bargain basement prices read this and re-think what they are doing. If you have talent then your work is worth the going rate. If you have to charge less to sell it, draw your own conclusions.
Professional Motorsport Photographer
2 x 1D MK-II, 7D, 17-40L, 24-70L, 70-200 2.8L IS, 100-400L,
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