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  1. #51
    2F/2F's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheryl Jacobs View Post
    Matt, the market is a bit better for wedding photography here in the US. $3000 for the photographer's time and an album is quite average and not at all hard to get, even in this economy, provided the photographer is halfway decent at what he/she does. From what I've gathered over the years, Americans tend to like to shell out money to wedding photographers more than the British do. Jeff Ascough (a good friend of mine) doesn't charge nearly as much as I believe he could in the US, and he does absolutely impeccable work (even if he has gone over to the dark side, the traitor.)
    That sounds pretty accurate, though there is a ton of variation. The ladies I work for get about $1,500 to $2,500 for a digital file/negative buyout, plus travel. This means they don't concern themselves with any of the printing, which the two of them, and myself, hate doing, no matter how lucrative it may be. We'd rather have the free time. Knock us if you want, but I like lounging about scratching my arse when I can, instead of sitting in front of a computer for almost any amount of money. I was hired as an outside editor to reedit (AKA correct the original editors big screw ups) Getty's pix of the U.S. Open in '07. The pay was incredible for 24 hour's work (equal to what I normally made in a whole month), but I was about to slit my wrists after being in front of a computer for hours correcting some 8,000 images. Never again. I hate editing. I'd rather shoot and sell the pix outright for three weddings than shoot *and* print one. Besides, the types of people who want a buyout are generally more budget conscious (AKA frugal), so tend to jive with my bosses and my own personality much better than loaded types. We have never had a bad personal experience with a bride, bride's mom, or anyone else at a low-budget wedding. I cannot say the same for the higher budget ones. As you see, it not only depends on the clients, but on the shooters. We don't want to make as much money as is humanly possible. We only want to be paid enough to survive to provide something, while striking a balance with our personal free time. Other people feel differently about their wedding work. More power to each of us, IMO.

    Maybe I would feel differently if I did not have much work, however. In that case, I might try to milk the couple for whatever I could.

    At the same time, I gave a quote for a vow renewal for an acquaintance at $600 with proof prints, and they said their budget was only $300, and had a totally inexperienced friend with a DSLR do it. Go figure. I thought $600 sounded like a "favor" at less than half of what they should have expected to pay, but it goes to show that the clients matter quite a lot. I prefer low-income people and weddings in every way, but good luck making a living doing them exclusively. Low income people have every right to ask a family member to do it for cheap or free. When they do this, they know full well that they are going to get what they pay for...but that it is certainly better than nothing at all. Should the fact that someone's uncle has an SLR on P mode really cut into our business? I don't think so. It certainly has not for the people I work for, and we don't even do ritzy affairs like a lot of wedding photographers. I lost that job because of my acquaintance's budget combined with my refusal to do it any cheaper; not because Uncle Joe has a DSLR. I don't get sore about Uncle Joe and his DSLR if that gives the clients what they truly want for what they can afford. We usually shoot about 600 pix each in a candid style (the equivalent of about 35 rolls of film between the two of us; a lot, but nowhere near unheard of in a 12+ hour day of candid shooting by two people) and deliver about 300 to 500 pix. Yes, people do want hundreds upon hundreds of stupid-ass pix. Don't ask me to explain, but they do. The 2D image is validation of our existence and self worth for some reason.
    Last edited by 2F/2F; 02-13-2009 at 12:03 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

  2. #52
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    2F/2F, I think your plan is just fine.

    Like you I hate the computer editing stuff. If a client wants an album I hire that out. My job is to shoot and sell. Lounging is cool!
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Ana´s Nin

  3. #53
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    Last edited by markbarendt; 02-13-2009 at 11:58 AM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: Double post
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Ana´s Nin

  4. #54
    Matt5791's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheryl Jacobs View Post
    Matt, the market is a bit better for wedding photography here in the US. $3000 for the photographer's time and an album is quite average and not at all hard to get, even in this economy, provided the photographer is halfway decent at what he/she does. From what I've gathered over the years, Americans tend to like to shell out money to wedding photographers more than the British do. Jeff Ascough (a good friend of mine) doesn't charge nearly as much as I believe he could in the US, and he does absolutely impeccable work (even if he has gone over to the dark side, the traitor.)
    Interesting, thanks for that Cheryl.

    I did attend three seminars run by Jeff at Focus, the photographic exhibition here in the UK (conveniently held in Birmingham) and found it very entertaining and extrememly interesting.

    I was the only one who put up a hand when he asked the question "anyone still shooting on film". Interestingly he responded "I wish I was" - and I wasn't too sure what that meant.

    I would completely agree with you on Americans valuing decent photography more than people do in the UK - that has been the impression I have had.

    Matt

  5. #55
    Cheryl Jacobs's Avatar
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    Matt, Jeff was amazing with his Leica and noctilux. He went digital because resources for his film work were drying up left and right, and he felt he had no choice. I will say that his digital work is very good and tastefully handled; he was quite successful in carrying his style over through the change of medium.

  6. #56
    2F/2F's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheryl Jacobs View Post
    Matt, Jeff was amazing with his Leica and noctilux. He went digital because resources for his film work were drying up left and right, and he felt he had no choice. I will say that his digital work is very good and tastefully handled; he was quite successful in carrying his style over through the change of medium.
    Good photographers have managed to do this. It is not all that hard. It is the "crummy" () film shooters who have really been called out by the switch to digital, IMO...not to mention the ones who have always done everything digital.
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

  7. #57
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    Last edited by markbarendt; 02-13-2009 at 12:45 PM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: Trpl post
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Ana´s Nin

  8. #58
    Matt5791's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheryl Jacobs View Post
    Matt, Jeff was amazing with his Leica and noctilux. He went digital because resources for his film work were drying up left and right, and he felt he had no choice. I will say that his digital work is very good and tastefully handled; he was quite successful in carrying his style over through the change of medium.
    Interesting - now it all makes sense - much of his seminar revolved around how shooting film benefits you if you shoot digital, and anyone who has never shot film is at a considerable disadvantage.

    Matt

  9. #59
    Gary Holliday's Avatar
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    Here are some starting guide prices...
    http://www.wpja.com/wedding-photogra...hotography.htm

    http://www.wpja.com/

    I can understand the frustration of editing thousands of images; but I feel that photographers who dump their photos unprinted onto discs, don't really care about their work. I do absolutely everything from beginning to end and take pride in my work. The reward is seeing the delight on the clients' face when they receive the pictures...this is the buzz that keeps me going in this job.

    Why take 1000s? I use around 10 36exp films and we can easily pick out 40 album worthy images...don't press the shutter if it's likely to be binned.

  10. #60
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Holliday View Post
    I can understand the frustration of editing thousands of images; but I feel that photographers who dump their photos unprinted onto discs, don't really care about their work.
    Gary,

    It's not about caring one way or another, it's about good business and offering products or services that the photographer is competent in providing and willing to do.

    I used to do it all when I was digital, hated being behind the computer. Started offering shoot and burn and had great fun and made a lot more hourly. That's good business and the clients got good raw material because I care a lot about the shots I took. The customer got exactly what they contracted and paid for.

    Let's turn this on it's head a bit.

    If we were talking about a commercial job, instead of a wedding, would printed proofs or finished albums be an issue?
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Ana´s Nin

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