Question by Sandra: How much should I charge for photography sessions?
I am 17 and I need to build my photography portfolio for a class. I have been doing some shoots for free. I have gotten a lot of compliments and I have already been asked to take photos at a wedding for payment. In the area I live in I have noticed some outrageous pricing for photographers. The cheapest I have seen was $ 250 for an hour session and a $ 400 photo shoot just for the wedding without the reception and extra photos. For the reception and 2 hours of extra photos along with the wedding this lady was charging $ 860! I know I am not very experienced and I just think that is ridiculous.. So my question is… How much should I charge for some cheap photo shoots?
Answer by gandrew
Things have changed with the digital age. During my 27 years of photography, we depended on reprints for our profit margin. Now, anybody with a $ 99 dollar printer can make the prints, so that is gone. Your customers probably want a file copy of your work, on what ever media that may be, and that means control of your work is gone. If you give them raw data files you can give it away for cheap, just your hourly time invested if you choose. If you are photoshopping lots of shots for corrections that needs to be charged for your time and skill. In the end, if you give your work away it will be seen as having little value. If you charge for it, the customers value the work. If you charge too much, no one will hire you. That is the fine line all pros walk. Go to wedding expos at the mall, talk to exhibitors and learn.
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