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Author Topic: Going rates for copy work?  (Read 3942 times)
Mike Guilbault
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« on: October 26, 2011, 09:27:59 PM »
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I've been asked to photograph some artwork for a nearby artist.  I haven't done this for a few years so wondering what the going rate is now for this type of work.  For this particular client, we won't be making prints just yet, but they need hi-res files for reproduction.
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mediumcool
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« Reply #1 on: October 27, 2011, 09:58:17 AM »
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What are you worth per hour? How much work is it? Donít forget additional post-processing if colour is crucial eg artworks.

In this sort of situation, I have long quoted two prices: per shot, and an hourly rate. Whichever is lower is what gets charged at the conclusion. The client has the confidence of a bottom line, which if you are really really efficient, may go even lower! Never happened to me.

Just agreed to photograph 12 oil paintings for $500 = $41.67 per (heís a friend, and broke). Iím happy, so long as he brings them to me. I am in a small city in Australia where costs are probably lower than where you are.

HTH
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #2 on: October 27, 2011, 09:22:11 PM »
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Thanks HTH.  This too is for a friend.  I was going to forego my shooting fee and just charge per image at $45/ea.  So not far off.  I believe there are around 20 prints for the job.  They're all the same size though, so once the first one is set, the rest will be quick.  Hmmm... maybe I'll go a little less.  It really won't take me that long.
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mediumcool
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« Reply #3 on: October 27, 2011, 09:32:48 PM »
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HTH means *hope this helps*, Mike Wink

You can call me mediumcool or Ian!

Your deal sounds like a better arrangement from your sideómore items and all at the same size. You might want to advise what your full charge would be; sometimes naÔve folks have no idea that youíre giving them a discount.
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #4 on: October 27, 2011, 09:40:49 PM »
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lol... I knew that but it didn't click in.  Thanks Ian!! Smiley

I always advice my full prices before a discount... but I hardly ever discount so that's usually not an issue. 
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Yelhsa
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« Reply #5 on: October 30, 2011, 04:02:34 AM »
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X amount for the 1st one and then give a discount based on volume - is the way I do it.
Because it's the setting up time to do the first one that costs you the most - after that, it's just a matter of churning them out.

So if they only wanted you to shoot one - what would your production costs be ? - because that's what you need to charge for the 1st one.
Then how many do you then think you could shoot in the first hour ?
And how many do you think you could shoot in each hour after that ?

Once you know that, then you should be able to work-out what you need to charge and what discounts you can give based on volume. 
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2011, 08:33:25 AM »
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Thanks Ashley... that's great advice and something that was in the back of my mind - but it was perfect to see it in writing like this.  

BTW, checked out your site.  Beautiful work and site layout. I also like the way you present the pricing model.  Very well done indeed.
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #7 on: October 31, 2011, 07:54:37 AM »
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I understand completely.  I recently did a job for which my quote was a little over $700 and a competing quote was for less than $70!! At least the client was educated enough to distinguish the difference and I got the job.
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theguywitha645d
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« Reply #8 on: October 31, 2011, 09:24:42 AM »
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and a competing quote was for less than $70!!

Those photocopiers are really good...
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #9 on: November 01, 2011, 07:03:18 AM »
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Heck... 8mp on my new iPhone.. what more do you need!? Wink
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mediumcool
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« Reply #10 on: November 01, 2011, 07:33:09 AM »
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Heck... 8mp on my new iPhone.. what more do you need!? Wink

And HD movies too!  Grin
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Robert Roaldi
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« Reply #11 on: November 01, 2011, 01:42:05 PM »
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I have nothing to add to the above but am chiming in with a question.

I have photographed my wife's art work for her web site and promotional materials but never for reproduction, e.g. producing prints for sale.  Web sites and sales brochures are a less demanding output, it seems to me. If you get the colours close, that's as good as you need. Since they're not the final product, they just need to be good enough to attract attention.

Being able to produce prints for sale is a different and more complex task, it seems to me. I'd hate to think of the back and forth with the printing houses to get the colours right (or close). But do you approach the initial photo-taking differently in that case? (I don't photograph for a living, btw.)

Thanks,
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Robert
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« Reply #12 on: November 01, 2011, 06:13:48 PM »
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I have nothing to add to the above but am chiming in with a question.

I have photographed my wife's art work for her web site and promotional materials but never for reproduction, e.g. producing prints for sale.  Web sites and sales brochures are a less demanding output, it seems to me. If you get the colours close, that's as good as you need. Since they're not the final product, they just need to be good enough to attract attention.

Being able to produce prints for sale is a different and more complex task, it seems to me. I'd hate to think of the back and forth with the printing houses to get the colours right (or close). But do you approach the initial photo-taking differently in that case? (I don't photograph for a living, btw.)

Thanks,

Minimally, you should photograph a grey card. Grey scales are even better, and something like a Colorchecker Passport is excellent. They will assist in firstly balancing colour, and with tonal range in the case of grey scales and Passports et al.
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framah
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« Reply #13 on: November 02, 2011, 08:54:20 AM »
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It also depends on how accurate the reproduction is supposed to be. Do you want the reproduction to be full size? Is the art very large? How large a file does the shooters camera create? Do they take multiple shots of the piece and them piece it back together to create a large file to work with or do they just pull the camera back enough to fit the image into the viewfinder.
I get  people  coming to me with images they shot of their art and want me to print it...  shot with their Canon Rebel as an sRBG jpeg and have trouble understanding why it doesn't look as good as the original.

The old adage garbage in, garbage out applies here. .. but you already know that, right?

Find someone with the largest megapixel camera available and you will get a more accurate reproduction. I shoot all of the art that comes to me with my Betterlight digital scanback in my Cambo 4x5 camera. I will still shoot a large piece in sections and merge them in PS. For smaller ones, I can scan them on my Creo scanner and get as good a reproduction as with my betterlight.

As for pricing.. I charge $85 to shoot a single with the Betterlight and then 45 for each extra "bite" of the original, plus computer time.
For smaller stuff on the Creo, I can get away with $45 to $65 plus computer time because I don't have to do any setup like in the studio.
That's about as much as my local area can afford.
I have also shot pieces for artists who just need an image for their website. For that, it's $25 per shot ( Adobe RGB jpeg)  with my Canon 1Ds Mark III with no computer work.
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