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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Weddings & Other Family Events Talk 
Thread started 23 Jan 2011 (Sunday) 12:41
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Need advice on wedding business

 
emperorevo86
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Jan 23, 2011 12:41 |  #1

So I just started getting serious about photography starting the summer of 2010. I love the work that many wedding photographer out there. There are some serious awsome portfolio and some that are ahhh ok one out there. And the ok ones are charging more than i expected them to be. Before I get seriouse about this business, I wanna make sure I'm fully equiped with the knowledge/skills to shoot above average pictures first. I don't wanna advertise myself if my work is anything of an average. My bro and I we did a couple wedding a few years ago, knowing nothing much about how the lights work or any understanding how our equipement work. We pulled off an ok result, better than what uncle Bob would of pulled off anyways. I've done a lot of studio work, but never really any outdoor or onlocation shoot much. so I wanna give myself another year before I take off again, just got so many questions to be answer. Maybe I'll give a shot at one wedding before the year end.

1 - would it be wise to start off my package at $750-950 based on my experienced.

2 - Wedding albums, I really like the look of queenberry, but I just don't know the price of it would cost for an album. Based on the price range I listed up above, can you guys give me some list of price range on some decend albums would normally cost and the makers are. Maybe a website link to it would be appreciated. Cuz every album makers sites out there does not list their prices online. Would be helpfull to get an idea of what to expect. Will I be making enought profit if I offer my clients albums like queenberry one? That's the whole idea to this. Thank you guys in advance.


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Red ­ Tie ­ Photography
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Jan 23, 2011 13:22 |  #2

First, this is not posted in the correct section. But anyways, welcome and I hope you get some good advice.

Your gear is almost there to be a wedding photographer, and it shouldnt cost too much to get it up to snuff imo (an extra body, a few extra lenses, flashes).

As to where to start price wise, it is hard to say. The prices you are posting are craigslist prices, which is ok if you want to go that route. It is hard to get started out there, so that may be the route for you.

As for albums, there is a reason they dont post them to the public. You have to be shown as a professional photographer and register with them before they show the prices. Queensberry albums are nice (an I believe Tim uses them) but they are extremely expensive. If you are shooting a 10 hour wedding, editing, designing and purchasing and delivering an album you will be making less than minimum wage per hour.

Do not underestimate the overhead of your business. Website and all your online materials (print proofing site, album proofing site, any online organizational tool), taxes, profit and cost, and all of the other little costs that really add up, you will not be creating a sustainable business.

Sign up for a few album sites to see the cost and figure out your markup. Good luck, but again, dont underestimate the work or the costs associated with this.


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dche5390
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Jan 24, 2011 02:11 |  #3

I do hope you take that year you suggested together into things as wedding photography has very little to do with the actual photography. To be a successful business one must know how to run a business. And there are many facets. Take the time to plan and think your strategy whilst building upon your technical skills.

Being an awesome photographer is awesome. But not being able to pay bills due to lack of business is not so awesome.


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tim
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Jan 24, 2011 03:11 |  #4

1. Learn the technical, inside and out.
2. Get a real website, not blogspot.
3. Spell check.
4. Queensberry are expensive, and exclusive. Start with Finaeo or Kiss.


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CTP
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Jan 24, 2011 17:29 |  #5

dche5390 wrote in post #11702745 (external link)
I do hope you take that year you suggested together into things as wedding photography has very little to do with the actual photography. To be a successful business one must know how to run a business. And there are many facets. Take the time to plan and think your strategy whilst building upon your technical skills.

Being an awesome photographer is awesome. But not being able to pay bills due to lack of business is not so awesome.

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emperorevo86
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Jan 25, 2011 02:49 |  #6

Thanks gangs for the many info. CTP thank you for sharing your experience up to this point. Yes I have to agree with you guys about everything. I've been reading lots of books, not just about wedding photography. But anything else that has to do with photography itself and the business of it all. I'm currently reading a book on different wedding photographer out there sharing their success and non success story starting from the beginning of their career till now. I am very much inspired by their stories. So I've learn a lot in just this past several month, but the learning will never stop. I just wanna learn as much as I can about this business and art before I make a second approach. I just know that the first real gig I'll have will have to be a big hit.

Website: I've done some webdesign in the past for a couple years actually, but never really have a .com of my own. I learned the art of HTML, Flash, etc. Well it's been years now, my skill is pretty much rusted up. Looks like I'll have to start from square one again.

Spell check, LOL. I don't wanna talk about this, I'm pretty bad at this so call English and still am.

Queensberry: expensive? ok why can't anybody just give me the ball park price for this sucker? That's all I'm asking. How am I supposed to figure my stuff out if the information I needed is omitted?

I'm starting to like wedding photography more and more. I think that what my main focus is gonna be in the future. As for now I'll probably start of slow with just the regular portrait photography and learn my way up. Oh, did I tell you guys this? "I'm gonna be big one day, you'll see."


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randplaty
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Jan 25, 2011 10:50 |  #7

I don't know how much Queensberry costs... but we use KISS and I consider them to be fairly expensive. Finao is the least expensive of the three and still make a good quality album. I can't really give you prices because I don't think posting them on a public forum like this would be the right thing to do.


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Red ­ Tie ­ Photography
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Jan 25, 2011 10:55 |  #8

Sign up for them and find the prices. We all have had to do it, and again - if you are offering the wedding and album for under $1000, my guess is that you will be spending more than you can afford if you are looking to make a profit.


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randplaty
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Jan 25, 2011 11:10 |  #9

Yeah, under $1000 for wedding and album is way too cheap. I can tell you that in general, flush mount albums can cost you anywhere from $250 to $700 or even more depending on the number of pages.


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PeaceFire
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Jan 25, 2011 13:29 |  #10

Your prices would be OK for starting if you DON'T include an album (in most areas, anywhere). Make that a la carte, then you can make some extra profits that way and a $950 becomes a $1450 when they order a $500 album and your overhead remains about the same. Plus not everyone wants an album so you may experience someone who wants to book you WITHOUT getting an album and expects you to discount yourself more.

You can also do different packages and offer on in the $1500 range that includes an album and one in the $950-1000 range that doesn't.


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tim
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Jan 25, 2011 15:07 |  #11

randplaty wrote in post #11711182 (external link)
I don't know how much Queensberry costs... but we use KISS and I consider them to be fairly expensive. Finao is the least expensive of the three and still make a good quality album. I can't really give you prices because I don't think posting them on a public forum like this would be the right thing to do.

More than KISS. More than just about every other album supplier. They have different costs in different countries too.


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emperorevo86
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Jan 25, 2011 18:07 |  #12

PeaceFire wrote in post #11712100 (external link)
Your prices would be OK for starting if you DON'T include an album (in most areas, anywhere). Make that a la carte, then you can make some extra profits that way and a $950 becomes a $1450 when they order a $500 album and your overhead remains about the same. Plus not everyone wants an album so you may experience someone who wants to book you WITHOUT getting an album and expects you to discount yourself more.

You can also do different packages and offer on in the $1500 range that includes an album and one in the $950-1000 range that doesn't.

That's exactly what my plan was. $750 would be a price I charge for the wedding this doesn't also include an album. I would like to know how much an album would cost first before I can make it a final package price. In this case it's too much of a secret to reveal. I didn't know it was too much of a hassle to get the info.

After 2-3 weddings done, I wanna jack up my price to about 50% more to meet my experience wise.


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tim
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Jan 25, 2011 18:37 |  #13

No-one responsible will post album cost prices online. They cost significantly more than you'd expect, and the biggest, best albums will run to thousands of dollars, cost price.


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