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Thread started 29 Mar 2015 (Sunday) 19:20
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Conversation overheard during photography Meetup

 
dkizzle
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Mar 29, 2015 19:20 |  #1

Today I went to a photography based Meetup group and met some people during a local walkaround. At the end about 20 people went into coffee shop and hung out for a bit. I overheard 2 participants talk.

Woman: So how much do you charge for a b/w portrait?
Man: Umm..uhh...ummm
Woman: Few hundred dollars right?
Man: Umm..uhh...ummm
Woman: Just so you know I work for a non profit and want a small portrait to send to my parents
Man:Umm..uhh..umm I can give you a discount for being member of the Meetup group

What shocked me was that the woman jumped at him with her own idea of the price before he could answer. I've talked to him and he was a very nice guy but I am not sure what kind of portrait photographer he was. Early on during the walk he complained about LCD being too bright and he cant see his images. I told him about using photographers loupe and he didn't know what it was and I had to explain how it blocks the light during bright days. He was using some sort of Rebel with a kit lens.

I stayed out of the conversation but its shocking that both are photographers with similar cameras and one is offering the other a few hundred dollars for b/w portrait.


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banquetbear
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Mar 29, 2015 19:33 |  #2

dkizzle wrote in post #17497217external link
I stayed out of the conversation but its shocking that both are photographers with similar cameras and one is offering the other a few hundred dollars for b/w portrait.

...a couple of things: firstly a photographers loupe is hardly a standard piece of kit (I can barely find one for sale here in NZ, and it took a bit of looking) so it isn't a surprise that someone hadn't heard of it.

Secondly: I'm not exactly sure what you find so shocking. So can you clarify: what was it exactly that you found so shocking?


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dkizzle
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Mar 29, 2015 20:09 as a reply to banquetbear's post |  #3

I agree with you that it is more used in landscape, where I use it. I think any serious photographer would've heard / seen / read about it over few years exposed to photography. I do remember it being covered recently in Outdoor Photographer as one of the must have things for landscape photographer.

I dont know what kind of prices are in NZ but recently there was a post here on POTN about $800 Craigslist wedding. So it is shocking to me that a photographer (herself) would offer few hundred dollars to someone with similar skill set & gear. Underpaid or overpaid it still the consumer the regulates actual prices the market receives.


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DutchinCLE
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Mar 29, 2015 20:13 as a reply to dkizzle's post |  #4

To me it seems that you are shocked that someone might make a few hundred bucks using a rebel and a kit lens instead of an expensive camera and an expensive lens.


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dkizzle
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Mar 29, 2015 20:31 as a reply to DutchinCLE's post |  #5

No. Equipment doesn't always make a great picture but 2 newbie photographers at a Meetup don't make one qualified to receive few hundred bucks for 1 portrait.

I travel several trips a year internationally with a group of 8-12 landscape photographers & get to interact with few hundred other photographers of all levels and can easily tell who is who.


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banquetbear
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Post has been edited over 2 years ago by banquetbear with reason 'corrected spelling'.
Mar 29, 2015 20:34 |  #6

dkizzle wrote in post #17497282external link
I agree with you that it is more used in landscape, where I use it. I think any serious photographer would've heard / seen / read about it over few years exposed to photography. I do remember it being covered recently in Outdoor Photographer as one of the must have things for landscape photographer.

...I'm a professional photographer and when I search for a "photographers loupe" I get this:

http://www.photowareho​use.co.nz ...upes-and-slide-viewers-2/external link

So I'm a serious photographer and my understanding of what a loupe is and what you think it is is completely different. Its no surprise that someone with a Rebel doesn't know what one is.

I dont know what kind of prices are in NZ but recently there was a post here on POTN about $800 Craigslist wedding. So it is shocking to me that a photographer (herself) would offer few hundred dollars to someone with similar skill set & gear. Underpaid or overpaid it still the consumer the regulates actual prices the market receives.

I still don't have a clue what is so shocking. Is it the price? Is it that she gave him a price? This seems like a simple normal conversation too me.


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dkizzle
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Post has been last edited over 2 years ago by dkizzle. 3 edits done in total.
Mar 29, 2015 20:46 as a reply to banquetbear's post |  #7

One consumer for $800 wants 8+ hour wedding coverage + post processing (underpaid) vs another consumer wants to pay few hundred for 1 b/w portrait from newbie photographer on the same skill level & equipment as the consumer (overpaid).

This is what I was talking about

http://www.amazon.com ...er-Displays/dp/B00A0TLDSYexternal link


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banquetbear
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Mar 29, 2015 21:10 |  #8

dkizzle wrote in post #17497325external link
One consumer for $800 wants 8+ hour wedding coverage + post processing (underpaid) vs another consumer wants to pay few hundred for 1 b/w portrait from newbie photographer on the same skill level & equipment as the consumer (overpaid).

...nope, sorry, still lost me. I'm not trying to be difficult here, but this is simply the free market in action. Both the prospective buyers and sellers have the opportunity to name a price: if they agree, a contract is formed. In the situation in the OP: what would have had to have happen in order for the conversation to not be shocking for you? Why do you think $200 is overpaying? Why do you think $800.00 is underpaying?


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dkizzle
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Mar 29, 2015 21:21 as a reply to banquetbear's post |  #9

If you cannot understand that $800 US for 8+ hours of wedding coverage + all post processing work is (underpaid) and few hundred is more like $300 for 1 picture is (overpaid) than maybe economics of NZ are different than I know in largest city in US.


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banquetbear
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Mar 29, 2015 21:54 |  #10

dkizzle wrote in post #17497372external link
If you cannot understand that $800 US for 8+ hours of wedding coverage + all post processing work is (underpaid) and few hundred is more like $300 for 1 picture is (overpaid) than maybe economics of NZ are different than I know in largest city in US.

...I understand economics very well. It appears you don't understand how the free market works. If someone is happy to pay $200.00 for a portrait, and someone is happy to accept $200.00 for a portrait: how is that overpaid? And why did it shock you? Can you let us know what the correct price is for a black and white portrait?


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sapearl
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Post has been edited over 2 years ago by sapearl.
Mar 29, 2015 22:16 |  #11

dkizzle wrote in post #17497302external link
No. Equipment doesn't always make a great picture but 2 newbie photographers at a Meetup don't make one qualified to receive few hundred bucks for 1 portrait.

I travel several trips a year internationally with a group of 8-12 landscape photographers & get to interact with few hundred other photographers of all levels and can easily tell who is who.

Correct me if I am wrong, but it sounds like you are really bothered by the possibility that somebody you consider to be a fairly new amateur might make a substantial amount of money for what you feel is a relatively small amount of work. It's whatever the market will bear. Perhaps the shooter is highly qualified and does beautiful work. Or maybe the buyer will be truly disappointed paying a large sum for inferior work. It's a possible deal between the two of them and if they are both happy with it then it's a win-win.


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dkizzle
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Mar 29, 2015 22:35 as a reply to sapearl's post |  #12

I am not bothered at all since portrait / wedding photography has no impact on my downline. I have no problems with free market but question the consumer who as newbie photographer willing to pay a few hundred, few means more than two (two hundred) to newbie photographer with same skill level and equipment for 1 b/w portrait.

As a landscape photographer who depends on print sales I am not bothered if someone with entry level DSLR makes money. I am shocked people are willing to pay $300 for amateur quality.


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nqjudo
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Mar 29, 2015 22:51 |  #13

Remember the show Three's Company where most of the plots surrounded someone hearing a part of something and taking it out of context? Could be what's going on here too. Who knows? Maybe they were just getting friendly? Much ado about nothing really. People say strange or unexpected things in certain contexts.


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bumpintheroad
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Mar 29, 2015 23:51 |  #14

I think it's possible that there are professional photographers who never look at their camera's LCD except as verification that a reasonably accurate exposure and composition has been captured. And if they specialize in portraits they might never have considered any option to the eye-level viewfinder aside from tethered shooting to a laptop or large LCD screen. While the concept of using a loupe in photography is not a breakthrough, prior to digital it was limited to inspection of negatives and transparencies or critical focus with large format cameras. And I'd also venture a guess that professional portrait photographers don't consider magazines that focus on landscape photography to be critical reading.

I only know about devices such as Hoodman and Zacuto due to my daughter's career in video. Once I discovered them I found them useful for portraits, but I might never have learned about them if I wasn't investigating gear for video.

As for $800 to shoot a wedding being underpaid, it depends on what you're offering the client. $800 to shoot a wedding and deliver a basic 12 page book could easily turn into $2,400 to deliver the final products after upselling and additional product orders. The $800 is a starting point; how many brides and parents will be satisfied with just 12 pages, especially with all that wedding gift money in the bank? If the $800 starting price gets you 40 weddings a year and after upselling you average $1,200 net per wedding, that's a pretty good income for a part time weekend job.

As for the newb Meet-Up photographer taking $200 to shoot a portrait, that sounds like a budding entrepreneur to me. Maybe a year or two from now he'll open his own studio with an established demand at $200 per sitting. That's not a bad place to be.


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Snafoo
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Mar 30, 2015 03:33 |  #15

I agree with others- you have way too little information to justify your shock. Perhaps the woman was well off, liked the fellow's work, and wanted to support his efforts to start up his new business. Perhaps she was attracted to him and thought $300 was a fair price for spending some one-on-one time with him. Perhaps she had read one too many admonitions to new photographers to not undervalue their work, and didn't want to appear like was price gouging. Perhaps $300 was the price she paid for her last portrait and assumed it was the going rate. Perhaps she wanted a ton of prints, possibly large ones. I could go on.

Bottom line: it was a free market transaction.


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Conversation overheard during photography Meetup
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