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Per-hour rates?

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Thread started 11 Jan 2006 (Wednesday) 20:26   
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vcutag
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Hey, folks.

I'm just starting to get to the point where I can start charging per-hour rates for assignments in the central Virginia area. I'm not really sure what a fair price is for the area; I've been told $100/hr. is reasonable for someone just starting out. That sounds a bit high to me, personally, but I don't know what a good ballpark figure is.

Any suggestions or advice?

Post #1, Jan 11, 2006 20:26:22


Tom Gehring
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SuzyView
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Wow, I'm here in Northern Virginia and that sounds wonderful. Get me a shoot and I'll do that for $100 an hour! :)

Actually, I've heard that and I think it's reasonable. You've got the gear, the expertise. If a plumber can charge me $80 just to come in and tell me my dishwasher needs to be replaced, I can charge $100 an hour and get pictures at the end of the deal.:)

SuzyView

Post #2, Jan 11, 2006 20:36:20


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vcutag
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SuzyView wrote:
Wow, I'm here in Northern Virginia and that sounds wonderful. Get me a shoot and I'll do that for $100 an hour! :)

Actually, I've heard that and I think it's reasonable. You've got the gear, the expertise. If a plumber can charge me $80 just to come in and tell me my dishwasher needs to be replaced, I can charge $100 an hour and get pictures at the end of the deal.:)

SuzyView

Yeah. I guess I'm just used to working as a college student in the $7-10/hr. range, so 10 times that seems exorbitant. But I'm not complaining... enough of this and I can afford a 5D. :-D

Post #3, Jan 11, 2006 20:39:41 as a reply to SuzyView's post 3 minutes earlier.


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blinking8s
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assistant stuff (high end) weddings: $50
min charge: $15 (im broke, in school, need the money)

MUST cover use of gear and my time there...

Post #4, Jan 11, 2006 20:59:07


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primoz
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SuzyView wrote:
Wow, I'm here in Northern Virginia and that sounds wonderful. Get me a shoot and I'll do that for $100 an hour!

You should this about this different way. This is not work in Mcdonalds where all your expenses are time and ride to there. I guess you are working here with your own equipment which is usually few $10.000 worth and you need to pay it, then usually this doesn't happen at your front door, which means you need to drive somewhere etc etc. After you count all this, $100/h is not that much as it sounds.
You just can't compare this thing with some job, where you come and use their tools.

Post #5, Jan 12, 2006 08:36:51 as a reply to SuzyView's post 12 hours earlier.


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PhotosGuy
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The better you are & the faster you work, the less that you're paid! And if you travel to a location & back, how do you get paid for the rest of the lost daylight? I charged a day rate & included 50 "Free" miles. (That's how much I hate paperwork & I'm not going to nickle & dime a client anyway). ;)
For a good client who's in a budget bind, I'd offer an (infrequent) 1/2 day rate. Keep in mind that the first time you cut your prices for someone, everyone else will hear about it & it will soon become your "Normal" rate. :D

In a case where the day was travel only, WITHOUT any shooting, I'd charge a 1/2-day rate.

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Post #6, Jan 12, 2006 08:42:49


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NGrinerPhoto
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I've been shooting pro for 6 years. Since I started shooting I've been charging $100 an hour for corporate shoots with a two hour minimum, $150 total for photojournalism and $250 an hour for weddings. When I was assisting on weddings, I was charging $60 an hour. When I contract weddings from a studio I charge $100 an hour. The best part about doing that is that there is no editing or meeting with clients.

Post #7, Jan 12, 2006 15:52:43




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kawter2
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NGrinerPhoto wrote:
I've been shooting pro for 6 years. Since I started shooting I've been charging $100 an hour for corporate shoots with a two hour minimum, $150 total for photojournalism and $250 an hour for weddings. When I was assisting on weddings, I was charging $60 an hour. When I contract weddings from a studio I charge $100 an hour. The best part about doing that is that there is no editing or meeting with clients.


IMO your rates don't seem consistant.

Post #8, Jan 12, 2006 16:02:38 as a reply to NGrinerPhoto's post 9 minutes earlier.



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vcutag
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primoz wrote:
You should this about this different way. This is not work in Mcdonalds where all your expenses are time and ride to there. I guess you are working here with your own equipment which is usually few $10.000 worth and you need to pay it, then usually this doesn't happen at your front door, which means you need to drive somewhere etc etc. After you count all this, $100/h is not that much as it sounds.
You just can't compare this thing with some job, where you come and use their tools.

Yeah, I know... it's just an eye-opener, thinking in different terms like that.

Post #9, Jan 12, 2006 16:42:14 as a reply to primoz's post 8 hours earlier.


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SuzyView
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I do like the minimum charge. Just to get my gear out the door would be worth $50 to me. I also don't enjoy the post-processing. If I do the shoot and someone else can handle the images, that would be just fine with me.

SuzyView

Post #10, Jan 12, 2006 16:46:14


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vwpilot
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I actually dont know many that do the hourly rate. A day rate is the best way to go and have the option for a half day rate as well when you think it warrants it. Most also try to stay away from half days as well because we all know its not only a half day and rarely will you ever be able to book two half days in one day.

Most day rates will go from about $750 on the low end to about $1200-$1500 on average. Half days are usually about 2/3 of the day rate, not really a true half rate.

If you are starting out a good rate would be about $750 for a full day and about $450-$500 for half day.

Post #11, Jan 12, 2006 17:17:27


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chtgrubbs
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Per-hour rates are really misleading, and I don't quote them to clients anymore. I got tired of trying to explain to clients that I was not making $8000 a week based on what I was charging them for an afternoons shoot. On a typical job, I might have 1-2 hours conferencing with the client, 1-2 hours of location scouting, time obtaining props, time arranging for models, packing gear, unpacking gear, post processing, paperwork,etc. Oh, and the shooting time too. Somtimes that is a small part of the job. So a one hour shoot might actually entail 6-10 hours of actual work. So I estimate the real amount of time the job will take and quote a fee based on how much income I must derive from that time to make a living.

Post #12, Jan 12, 2006 17:24:22




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primoz
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I think this is pretty much best advise here. I don't charge hour rates at all either. I charge per event (prices are unfortunately way lower then you have in USA). Hour rates might sound better to someone, but take a look from other side. Usually skiing race, which I cover in this time of year, lasts 2x45mins max, with 1 or 1.5 hour break in between. So basically I'm usually working (with camera in my hand) for about 1 hour, maybe 1.5h. So I can charge for 1 hour only. Problem is that with all things included into this (driving there, getting my stuff to press center, being on track way before start, waiting between first and second run, sending photos etc.) usually I go around 6 or 7am and come back (in best case) around 4 or 5pm. So I'm out and not being able to do anything else for almost all day, and for this I really can't charge 1 hour, and clients usually don't care if I need to be on track 2 hours before start, so of course they wouldn't want me to charge 5 hours. So per event (or as Jim said per day) rate is best option. At least for me.

Post #13, Jan 13, 2006 05:31:31 as a reply to vwpilot's post 12 hours earlier.


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NGrinerPhoto
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kawter2 wrote:
IMO your rates don't seem consistant.

please explain why it is you don't think my rates are consistent.

Post #14, Jan 13, 2006 09:37:04 as a reply to kawter2's post 17 hours earlier.




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kawter2
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NGrinerPhoto wrote:
please explain why it is you don't think my rates are consistent.


I just feel that your corporate work and $150 total cost for PJ work is dirt cheap. If you can pull $60per hour just being an assistant and handing the cards of, and also $100 per hour just to shoot. Your time is worth a LOT more in the other areas.. BTW $60 is one of the highest assistant rates i have seen.. in contrast to your PJ & corporate rates. I don't think you are off base with any pricing, I just think you need to evaluate your worth across the board

just a Humble Opinion

Regards

Post #15, Jan 13, 2006 12:03:58 as a reply to NGrinerPhoto's post 2 hours earlier.



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