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FORUMS Photo Sharing & Visual Enjoyment Architecture, Real-Estate & Buildings 
Thread started 15 Jul 2010 (Thursday) 14:37
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A thread for real estate, architectural, and interior design photography

 
Scott ­ Spellman
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Aug 25, 2016 11:19 |  #8416

seaLere wrote in post #18104587 (external link)
Alright I need some advice from everyone here. I've been doing a lot of work lately for custom home builders and vacation home companies more than real estate agents so I've run into an issue I didn't expect as much. Around here, there is a huge untapped market with awful architectural photographers (I wouldn't even call them that...single flash exposures is all you see). Without sounding cocky, I feel I am the best architectural photographer in the city, maybe even this half of the state and have yet to see better work. (Mind you my city is only 130,00 ish people, and the market expands into neighboring states in a very rural low density population).

I did a home for a builder who gave the photos to a local custom steel company to use since they put a lot of work in the house. I told him its not transfering to 3rd parties, modified a license I found, so that that is clear. He's paying me a separate licensing fee for their use now, which is fine, but going forward, does anyone have any ideas on a pricing structure for properties shot for commercial (many times multiple) companies? The home builder wants me to charge him a flat rate fee, and that gives him a license and the ability to transfer it to other contractors he used without having to send everyone through me.

I want my services to feel like a partnership with my clients where my images are easily shared with other parties. For that goal, I would offer a restricted rate of 1X and an unrestricted rate of 1.25X or 25% for a license to transfer to any third party. To me, it is far better to slightly increase my pricing for a valued client and do more work at my full rate for new clients than to manage the paperwork of licensing to every requested party.

There was a time when it was appropriate to use complicated licensing structures, but today nobody really understands it. A simple working partnership will bring you far more rewards.




  
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Alveric
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Aug 25, 2016 12:09 |  #8417

I second the two pieces of advice above. As one business owner told me once, 'people want to do business with those whom they trust': with those they see as friends, essentially. If you come along topping it the intransigent photo maven soon you won't be getting any work.

This is one reason why I find the pricing and licencing 'advice' given by some publications, photographers, and photographers' associations disingenious and even downright dangerous. These sources would have me believe that my work was made of diamond dust and that anyone who even looks at it without bowing to my mastery AND paying me a fee AND giving me credit is stealing from me and should be slapped with a suit.

While it's true that good work takes time, effort and know-how, and that free-loaders are certainly not welcome, rate hikes of 50% are bound to make you look uncooperative and right greedy. Asking for credit every time will in turn make you look overly conceited. People will smile, tell you your work is awesome and then they won't hire you.

Publications in which I've seen credit given to the photographer are editorial pieces (journals and magazines), or advertorial magazines (which give credit because they're usually paying the photographer a pittance); but even in these publications, ads never have a 'Photo © Justin Focus' at the bottom: even if that were OK to the editor, their client would not have it.

A more effective approach is to genuinely help your clients out (vs. looking like you're helping). You can tell the client he can invite his contractor to the scheme, and if the rate was $1000, you'll increase it to $1250 if and only if they both split the bill. They both get photos, for almost half the cost of individual licensing, you get a wee bit of a bonus (since the individual rate was already covering your overhead and earning you a profit, anything above is icing on the cake, and you don't really do any more work than copy files twice), and everyone walks out happy.


'The success of the second-rate is deplorable in itself; but it is more deplorable in that it very often obscures the genuine masterpiece. If the crowd runs after the false, it must neglect the true.' —Arthur Machen
Why 'The Histogram' Sux (external link)

  
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cccc
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Aug 25, 2016 13:28 as a reply to  @ post 18104952 |  #8418

Which magazine?




  
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seaLere
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Aug 25, 2016 19:42 |  #8419

cccc wrote in post #18105985 (external link)
Which magazine?

Nothing large, just a local magazine we have here for custom homes (Black Hills Builder). I've had features in multiple articles as well as full pages ads (Because the magazine company failed to give me photo credit on photos they used without permission). Funny thing was, they have a guy who did the shoot of the same property and didn't even use his photos.


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- www.codylere.com (external link) - Architectural and Interiors Photography

  
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digirebelva
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Aug 26, 2016 06:26 |  #8420

IMAGE: https://c3.staticflickr.com/9/8835/29133215482_9fb0545efd_b.jpg
IMAGE LINK: https://flic.kr/p/Lopk​YE  (external link) Fox Club Way-17 (external link) by Tim Wilson (external link), on Flickr

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ptcanon3ti
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Aug 26, 2016 09:27 |  #8421

seaLere wrote in post #18102729 (external link)
But by choosing not to show flaws you also potentially get people in the door at least, which is farther than somebody who may not choose to look at it otherwise.

Why is a sloped street a "flaw"?


Paul
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seaLere
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Aug 26, 2016 09:57 |  #8422

ptcanon3ti wrote in post #18106966 (external link)
Why is a sloped street a "flaw"?

It's really not a flaw, but I said the sloped street to my eye made the picture look a bit crooked, so I would have cropped in more. In general, my rule is to not show smaller flaws (only major things that need to be seen as they would piss somebody off if they came to the house and discovered)


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- www.codylere.com (external link) - Architectural and Interiors Photography

  
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rgs
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Aug 26, 2016 10:49 |  #8423

A nice change from my day to day residential fare. Here are a couple of images from an alternative health center that I photographed for a brochure. I especially like the minimalist look of the stairway with the painting. Tell me what you think.


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The Singular Image (external link)Richard Smith Photography (external link)
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Fine Art America (external link)

  
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seaLere
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Aug 28, 2016 16:46 |  #8424

Thinking of selling my Canon 17-35 2.8 and getting ahold of the new Laowa 12mm 2.8. It's manual focus but is supposed to have an insanely small amount of distortion for a lens this wide. What do you guys think about this lens for interiors? Is 12mm too wide if there is no distortion? If there is, that just gives more room for corrections and crops if anything.

http://petapixel.com …ion-lowla-12mm-f2-8-spin/ (external link)


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- www.codylere.com (external link) - Architectural and Interiors Photography

  
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twopinetreesphoto
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Aug 28, 2016 21:58 as a reply to  @ seaLere's post |  #8425

Have you tried the Canon 11-24L? It seems heavy but looks amazing! I'd give it a rent and see if it works as well.

http://petapixel.com …-canon-ef-11-24mm-f4l-usm (external link)
https://www.dpreview.c​om …-canon-s-new-11-24mm-f4-l (external link)




  
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twopinetreesphoto
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Aug 28, 2016 22:08 |  #8426

I have 2 questions regarding pricing / licensing.

Price - I see a debate between pricing where its either like a fixed amount of some sort (varies by market) like $100, $200 for the house, or X amount for square foot ranges (X for <2500 sq ft, Y for 2500-5000, etc). That is simpler, but more ambiguous about how many pictures are expected, getting paid more for twilight shots vs. standard bedrooms, etc. The other way is do $X per picture ($10, $20, whatever). You don't have to say exactly what you charge, but I'm curious what the majority of folks here do? Which way do you lean? The per picture makes more sense to ME, but the flat rate seems like it would be more accepted by an agent.

Licensing - how do you do it? I'm just getting started, but I assume I need to worry about it a little bit. I've heard licensing scares off agents as they aren't used to dealing with it (as I'm lucky enough to convince them to use me vs their iPhone). I want to cover myself, but I also don't want to scare off or lay some heavy handed license down with all these dos and donts. My website hoster can do digital downloads, and can attach a license which I like as a nice clean way to go. When they download and pay for the pics in a zip, it attaches the license. And I'm talking like 2 small paragraphs of like non-transferable, can use for print/website, etc. Do you mail an invoice with a license or email, or use something via your website? I like what I have, but just wondering if its too much too soon.

Thanks for the advice!




  
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rgs
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Aug 28, 2016 22:48 as a reply to  @ twopinetreesphoto's post |  #8427

I'm a bit high in my market so I shoot mostly nicer houses. I also have a list of remarkably loyal and appreciative clients. First the price:


  1. $200 for houses under 3000 sq ft.
  2. $250 for houses between 3000 and 5000 sq ft.
  3. $300 over 5000 sq ft
  4. $50 per hour with a 2 hour minimum (1 hour on site and 1 hour in post) when hourly charges are more appropriate.


As to licensing, old film methods are just no longer valid. The purpose of RE photography is to sell the house. Anything that helps the realtor do that is included in my fee. I only charge extra for magazine covers, commercial magazines, and billboards. I do retain all the rights but don't try to collect more if the photos are used longer or wind up in "Homes and Land" or on a brochure. I really don't even mind if they are used in promotional materials with the exceptions above.

Canon 7d MkII, Canon 50D, Pentax 67, Canon 30D, Baker Custom 4x5, Canon EF 24-104mm f4, Canon EF 100mm f2.8 Macro, Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5, 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Di VC

The Singular Image (external link)Richard Smith Photography (external link)
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twopinetreesphoto
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Aug 28, 2016 22:56 as a reply to  @ rgs's post |  #8428

So a flat fee + a per hour rate if I understand you right?

So for licensing, I'm not saying charge extra for anything, what do you do to say they agree to it? Verbal? Just mail them a copy with an invoice? For RE I agree the shots are more short term unless its for designers and such which would be much more long term and important. Hope my question makes sense. Thanks for the reply!




  
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Scott ­ Spellman
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Post edited over 2 years ago by Scott Spellman.
     
Aug 28, 2016 23:04 |  #8429

ncphotoguy wrote in post #18109746 (external link)
I have 2 questions regarding pricing / licensing.

Price - I see a debate between pricing where its either like a fixed amount of some sort (varies by market) like $100, $200 for the house, or X amount for square foot ranges (X for <2500 sq ft, Y for 2500-5000, etc). That is simpler, but more ambiguous about how many pictures are expected, getting paid more for twilight shots vs. standard bedrooms, etc. The other way is do $X per picture ($10, $20, whatever). You don't have to say exactly what you charge, but I'm curious what the majority of folks here do? Which way do you lean? The per picture makes more sense to ME, but the flat rate seems like it would be more accepted by an agent.

Licensing - how do you do it? I'm just getting started, but I assume I need to worry about it a little bit. I've heard licensing scares off agents as they aren't used to dealing with it (as I'm lucky enough to convince them to use me vs their iPhone). I want to cover myself, but I also don't want to scare off or lay some heavy handed license down with all these dos and donts. My website hoster can do digital downloads, and can attach a license which I like as a nice clean way to go. When they download and pay for the pics in a zip, it attaches the license. And I'm talking like 2 small paragraphs of like non-transferable, can use for print/website, etc. Do you mail an invoice with a license or email, or use something via your website? I like what I have, but just wondering if its too much too soon.

Thanks for the advice!

I charge simply based off of initial list price from $150 to $400 with extra charges for travel, twilight, and drone shots. Charging per photo makes no sense.




  
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rgs
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Aug 28, 2016 23:08 |  #8430

ncphotoguy wrote in post #18109796 (external link)
So a flat fee + a per hour rate if I understand you right?

No. A flat fee but sometimes an hourly rate fits better (partial coverage, working for a builder, ect) so in those cases, an hourly fee.


Canon 7d MkII, Canon 50D, Pentax 67, Canon 30D, Baker Custom 4x5, Canon EF 24-104mm f4, Canon EF 100mm f2.8 Macro, Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5, 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Di VC

The Singular Image (external link)Richard Smith Photography (external link)
Richard Smith Real Estate Photography (external link)500PX (external link)
Fine Art America (external link)

  
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