Ad
Ad
Ad
Pages: [1] 2 3 »   Bottom of Page
Print
Author Topic: Handling amature professional photographer clients for printing  (Read 4153 times)
darlingm
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 337


WWW
« on: February 08, 2013, 08:31:39 PM »
ReplyReply

I reproduce artwork and print for photographers.

Art's almost easier.  Borrow the original, do my thing.  I've never been comfortable with what to do with ... those that I'll call an amateur professional photographer.  Someone who spends a lot of time selling their work, either part or full time.  However, sends me sRGB files, has blown highlights, hasn't been color managed, has too much noise, has been enlarged a lot without using something like Perfect Resize or PhotoZoom Pro, etc, etc.  But, someone who creates fantastic photos, but they could be so much more.

I don't want to criticize their work and drive them away.

But, my largest impulse is wanting to ask if they want to give me the original unmodified file the camera captured, in whatever form that is, and handling it from there, having seen the general direction they tried going in.  At this point, I don't mind spending the time to edit an image for them.  Should be charging for image editing, and will someday, but right now I'm focused more on getting beyond thrilled clients.  Then, after the job's handled, being very active in offering them (complementary) help and training in how they can do it better in the future.

However, I don't want to be offensive.  Don't want to sound like I'm saying you don't know what you're doing, just let me do it.

But, I want their image to sell well so they're successful, and I'm successful by them needing more prints.  But, I'm sure they still want it to be their image.  (Personally, I'm happy selling the prints, not concerned about credit for it or anything.)


I know most of you are photographers who print for yourselves.  Before you learned everything you've learned, how would you have liked for a printer you were using to handle this situation?
Logged

Mike • Westland Printworks
Fine Art Printing • Amazing Artwork Reproduction • Photography
http://www.westlandprintworks.com • (734) 255-9761
bill t.
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2693


WWW
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2013, 09:32:45 PM »
ReplyReply

Less than a couple decades ago there were specific printers and technicians at color labs and custom b&w labs that were much sought after by pro photographers.  And it was common for top pros to employ in-house lab people.  The idea of fruitful alliances between photographers and photo technicians is an old and respected one.  Perhaps there's some way to exploit those recent traditions to your benefitt.  In my little city there are at least 2 people who do that kind of work and make a good living at it.  And for instance, Gregory Crewdson has occasionally mentioned his favorite type C printer by name during interviews, etc. There's no shame in it, and in a way having people working "under you" is a prestigious thing.

It's all in the spin-doctoring.  "You work is fantastic!  Why don't you let me take that post processing burden off you shoulders so you can spend time concentrating on your photography.  I can show you first approximation proofs, and we can work from there to refine prints that will look great in the best venues."  Shouldn't take much more than that.  (damn prima donas!)
Logged
langier
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 631



WWW
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2013, 10:40:22 PM »
ReplyReply

Invite your clients over for a half-day demo of how to properly and professionally craft their images for print.  Take one of their images and take them through the whole process showing them potential issues with their files, how to choose proper files for printing, etc.

They'll learn to work more carefully and you'll get files that are easier for you to print and you all will benefit from the colaberation. .
Logged

Larry Angier
ASMP, NAPP, ACT, and many more!

Webmaster, RANGE magazine
Editor emeritus, NorCal Quarterly

web--http://www.angier-fox.photoshelter.com
facebook--larry.angier
twitter--#larryangier
google+LarryAngier
darronfishman
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1



« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2013, 11:40:47 PM »
ReplyReply

The profession of photography is best if we do our job with full dedication.Make a gallery of images and keep a sort of small exhibition on it.Clients will see your work and try to learn from it.
Logged

Mike Guilbault
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 817



WWW
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2013, 06:29:32 AM »
ReplyReply

I find that most amateur photographers (and even most professionals) love that you're trying to help them improve their image. They are often amazed at how much better their prints look after I'm done with them.  I have a few that simply send me their files and say 'do your magic'!  You can't go wrong with being honest. I told one photographer that his stuff was awful (and why) and he's made a drastic improvement over the last year. I have a display of my work in the front gallery so they can see the quality I can produce and have never had anyone get upset about my suggestions.  My price list for prints states that the prices are for 'print ready' files. I will do minor adjustments, mostly just in soft-proofing, and charge extra for colour correction, tonal adjustments or retouching.  They understand that.   I also offer workshops in photography and post-processing (the Lightroom workflow) so they feel comfortable asking me questions.  They view my services as there to help them. So... by all means make suggestions, critique their work and teach them.  They'll appreciate it and come back for more!
Logged

Justan
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1875


WWW
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2013, 10:25:04 AM »
ReplyReply

Quote
It's all in the spin-doctoring.  "You work is fantastic!  Why don't you let me take that post processing burden off you shoulders so you can spend time concentrating on your photography.  I can show you first approximation proofs, and we can work from there to refine prints that will look great in the best venues."  Shouldn't take much more than that.  (damn prima donas!)

Offering a trial image enhancement for a nominal cost might be a good idea but it could also become a sink hole of time.

At my shows recently there have been vast numbers of people who have asked directly and indirectly how to increase their print quality. These “enthusiasts” are starting to drive me nutty as they demand so much time but absolutely never are interested in buying anything. And there are so many of them! It is difficult to spend much time explaining PP in any degree of detail at a show. Plus I’ve found that most are ignorant and intimidated by the use of PS and LR or other similar tools, but few are willing to admit it.

Still, some might be amenable to having work done for them, if the price was right. Your suggestion has legs. I bet that, at the least it will get them out of the booth quicker, so I can spend more time with other potential customers. Thanks for the suggestion, I have a huge show coming up next week and will give this approach a try....
« Last Edit: February 09, 2013, 10:50:33 AM by Justan » Logged

bill t.
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2693


WWW
« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2013, 01:28:54 PM »
ReplyReply

Justan, are your photographs Enhanced With Photoshop?  While I understand that means they are not Pure Photographs, could you please tell me exactly how you do that?

When it comes to chasing nuisances out of your booth, the only that beats sibilant spraying is an overt sales pitch.

Back on topic, anybody wishing to find clients for fine art printing need only show images at an art fair.  There are a lot of grandchildren, kitty cats, and doggies in this world needing their smartphone snaps turned into masterpieces, and Instagram only goes so far in that direction.
Logged
Mike Guilbault
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 817



WWW
« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2013, 09:25:22 PM »
ReplyReply

It's precisely because of 'enthusiasts' asking questions and such that I started offering workshops.  I figured I may as well get paid for my 25 years + experience and knowledge.  And I actually enjoying teaching now. Go figure!
Logged

Justan
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1875


WWW
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2013, 10:46:42 AM »
ReplyReply

^Promote your skills at some local shows and I predict you will gain many more clients.

Photo enthusiasts are a HUGE resource at the shows I’ve done. Doesn’t matter if there are a thousand or 50 thousand who attend the shows, lots and lots and lots of people connect with quality work. I talk with scores of people who are interested in getting better results with their camera. The number of people who carry a portfolio on their iphones or similar devices is nothing shy of amazing. For some reason they endlessly come to the photo art booth and all but demand validation of their skills in the form of showing their work while asking endless questions.

There is probably a way bigger market at these shows for people subconsciously seeking instruction and desiring quality printing than there is for art photography. An inexpensive custom print and/or offer for workshop opportunity could work out pretty well.
Logged

BobDavid
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1074


« Reply #9 on: February 10, 2013, 12:13:43 PM »
ReplyReply

I give clients the option: custom printing or printing direct from their files without spending more than a few moments adusting the gamut or a curve before printing. I require a minimum of $75 per order. I am not intersted in wasting time on smaller jobs. I charge $75 an hour for post production in a addition to the cost of paper and ink. I take payment when the order is placed, unless I am familiar with the client. I guarantee my product.

I give workshops every now and then and I offer private tutorials for those interested in learning more about photography and post-processing.
Logged
bill t.
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2693


WWW
« Reply #10 on: February 10, 2013, 12:46:56 PM »
ReplyReply

One of the art fairs I participate in keeps after me to do an "artist demonstration" of my techniques at the show.  Will never happen.  Occurs me to that workshops are a great way to bring up a whole new generation of effective competitors.  If you've got a good thing going, don't do workshops.  I think that makes sense.
Logged
neile
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1095


WWW
« Reply #11 on: February 10, 2013, 01:04:04 PM »
ReplyReply

My entire (small) printing business is focused on advanced amateurs/prosumers. I have to differentiate myself from two classes of competitors:

1) Costco/Target/Walmart/etc.
2) Other inkjet-based printing services

#1 is easy: I cost more, but the prints are better. Nobody who's ever seen an inkjet print vs. a Costco Noritsu print ever picks the Costco print.

#2 takes a bit more work. I stand apart via the hands-on touch I provide. I build consultation time into my print pricing to help photographers that aren't used to printing get their prints adjusted properly. Usually that's brightness levels, colour balance, and spotting. They keep coming back for more prints because of this personal connection, which they cannot get at larger shops.

Neil
Logged

Neil Enns
Dane Creek Folio Covers. Limited edition Tuscan Sun and Citron covers are now in stock!
KenBabcock
Guest
« Reply #12 on: February 10, 2013, 01:58:07 PM »
ReplyReply

One of the art fairs I participate in keeps after me to do an "artist demonstration" of my techniques at the show.  Will never happen.  Occurs me to that workshops are a great way to bring up a whole new generation of effective competitors.  If you've got a good thing going, don't do workshops.  I think that makes sense.

Exactly!

In addition to photography and LF printing, I'm also a traditional oil painting artist at the professional level.  I've combined things and have a good thing going after decades of learning.  If I taught workshops (and I've been asked) I would effectively provide others with the knowledge to put myself out of business.  They would only require the tools after learning the knowledge and techniques used.  It would be foolish.

Nobody in this world has ever taught me anything - ever.  Everything I know is from hands on trial and error.  How easy it has become to pay a few dollars and learn everything you need to know in just hours as opposed to spending years like I did perfecting my skills and turning it into craftsmanship.

No thanks.  Keep your money and use it to buy tools and materials that you will no doubt waste while learning.  It's part of the process.

I have no plans of mentoring my next competitor.  It's bad enough I have thieves stealing my work trying to reproduce it, which is another reason I don't print on paper unless they're portraits or wedding photos.  Much harder to scan and reproduce an image with the canvas texture Smiley  Oops, there I go giving away something already.  Damn - enough already.
Logged
RachelleK
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 47


« Reply #13 on: February 10, 2013, 03:26:19 PM »
ReplyReply


Nobody in this world has ever taught me anything - ever.  Everything I know is from hands on trial and error.  How easy it has become to pay a few dollars and learn everything you need to know in just hours as opposed to spending years like I did perfecting my skills and turning it into craftsmanship.


Congratulations!  This is the most amazing quote I have ever read in a forum.  

Did you not ever go to school?  Have you not ever read a book?  Do you not feel any responsibility to give back what you have learned?
« Last Edit: February 10, 2013, 03:29:19 PM by Rprt » Logged
Tony Jay
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2077


« Reply #14 on: February 10, 2013, 03:43:35 PM »
ReplyReply

Nobody in this world has ever taught me anything - ever.  Everything I know is from hands on trial and error.  How easy it has become to pay a few dollars and learn everything you need to know in just hours as opposed to spending years like I did perfecting my skills and turning it into craftsmanship.

Are you sure your name is not Robinson Crusoe.
Ooops, I forgot, he had Man Friday to help him!

(I have read the whole post by the way. It is not credible.)

Tony Jay
Logged
KenBabcock
Guest
« Reply #15 on: February 10, 2013, 04:50:31 PM »
ReplyReply

Congratulations!  This is the most amazing quote I have ever read in a forum.  

Did you not ever go to school?  Have you not ever read a book?  Do you not feel any responsibility to give back what you have learned?

Nope, never went to school.  I'm illiterate   Roll Eyes

Yeah I feel so responsible to give back everything I've learned in life cause the next generation is too lazy to learn anything.  You can play your Xbox for endless hours then learn from me in a few minutes how to create a piece of art, or repair your vehicle, etc...  The hard work is done, right?  Let's be lazy now and copy someone else's hard work.  Geez.  I fear for this generation.
Logged
KenBabcock
Guest
« Reply #16 on: February 10, 2013, 04:52:21 PM »
ReplyReply

Are you sure your name is not Robinson Crusoe.
Ooops, I forgot, he had Man Friday to help him!

(I have read the whole post by the way. It is not credible.)

Tony Jay

Never know, that could be my name.  Creating monikers on here so I'm not easily recognized Smiley
Logged
BobDavid
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1074


« Reply #17 on: February 10, 2013, 05:46:06 PM »
ReplyReply

Having used Photoshop for 12 years, I have nothing to fear regarding offering workshops, demos, and private instruction. I've got 12 years experience, a background in art, science, color theory, drawing, and the history of photography. All of these ingredients influence what I teach. Many of my workshop attendees hire me to print their photos. Once they realize that r,g,b,c,m,y,k,LAB are available for color correction and that being able to use a pen (as in Wacom tablet) to fill in detail that was lost due to blobs of 0,0,0 data in the original capture, they realize and respect the level of sophistication that I have earned. Being generous with hard-earned knowledge is a great way to acquire business.
Logged
Peter Le
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 58


WWW
« Reply #18 on: February 12, 2013, 12:06:09 AM »
ReplyReply

Exactly!

In addition to photography and LF printing, I'm also a traditional oil painting artist at the professional level.  I've combined things and have a good thing going after decades of learning.  If I taught workshops (and I've been asked) I would effectively provide others with the knowledge to put myself out of business.  They would only require the tools after learning the knowledge and techniques used.  It would be foolish.

Nobody in this world has ever taught me anything - ever.  Everything I know is from hands on trial and error.  How easy it has become to pay a few dollars and learn everything you need to know in just hours as opposed to spending years like I did perfecting my skills and turning it into craftsmanship.

No thanks.  Keep your money and use it to buy tools and materials that you will no doubt waste while learning.  It's part of the process.

I have no plans of mentoring my next competitor.  It's bad enough I have thieves stealing my work trying to reproduce it, which is another reason I don't print on paper unless they're portraits or wedding photos.  Much harder to scan and reproduce an image with the canvas texture Smiley  Oops, there I go giving away something already.  Damn - enough already.

     The only artists I have ever known that were worried about being copied and refused to teach what they have learned......were well ....not very good at what they did and were probably incapable of teaching it. Not saying this is you.....but it is a observation I have made many times in life....
Logged
bill t.
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2693


WWW
« Reply #19 on: February 12, 2013, 01:44:56 AM »
ReplyReply

I have had the pleasure of knowing and even working for a few truly great people in my life.  They were all far to busy to engage in anything like formal teaching.  However, they were for the most part generous about sharing information, and willing to accept input from those below them in the organization.  Teaching at its best is a two way street where everything is on the table.

Anyway, formal workshops and organized instruction in the visual arts aren't much use, and for people with some degree of talent may result in several years of shackled creativity.  Pop quiz...what's the proper Zone for caucasian human skin in sunlight?  If you put up your hand you know what I mean.  What a novice really needs is not a workshop in some specific bit of arcanae, but a general skill at gleaning knowledge and developing their own skills in the light of their particular requirements, and you kids have no idea how lucky you are to have the Internet.

Didn't Ansel make some sort of moderately cynical remark about the folks who attended his Yosemite workshop?  Drew a Google blank just now, but I know it's there somewhere.  Does any of this make sense?

Logged
Pages: [1] 2 3 »   Top of Page
Print
Jump to:  

Ad
Ad
Ad