So I was scrolling through Facebook mindlessly this past week and I happened to come across a few comments relating to photography prices- both from people from my city as well as a few other areas.
The comments revolved around some photographers being overpriced and that her friend only charged "$80" or "$150" for 60 photos. Most of the time I would ignore it and keep scrolling by.
However, today is the day I speak out about it. Yes, photography is everywhere- everyone has phones and standard DSLR cameras are becoming more affordable. Photography has become an easy field to do as a side job and a hobby...
But what about those of us that are doing photography full time? Those of us that live and breathe with a camera in our hand trying to make a living? My prices may be more expensive... but what some people don't understand is what goes into my pricing and WHY I charge what I do.
I have spent years saving for expensive equipment and learning to get to the skill level I'm currently at. I have aimed to be a reliable and quality photographer, and unfortunately... prices reflect quality. My pricing is based on my shooting time, editing time, my gas to get to locations, my advertising costs, my equipment costs, taxes, many other costs to maintain my business... and to actually pay myself- which comes last!
I quickly did the math. If I charged $150 for even 50 photos and took into account all my costs and time involved with each client, I would be making LESS than $6.00 per hour (often times less if for some reason editing took longer than usual). How is that right when minimum wage is pretty much double that? We don't throw a pricing number out of nowhere just to make money- we charge what we do because we HAVE to in order to sustain ourselves.
What is my goal for this blog post? To educate those that think professional photographers are overpriced... and to remember there is a reason why we charge what we do. Do I have a problem with someone going with a cheaper photographer who is just starting out? No and never. I support people beginning the photography adventure- I was there once!
I guess I just want people to understand the full time world of photography. It's already challenging operating our own business, being told photography "isn't really a job", sometimes being undervalued as a photographer, and on top of it being criticized for pricing.
Did I mention how difficult it was for me to get a reasonable interest rate to finance my new vehicle because being "a photographer and an entrepreneur doesn't look that good to a bank?." I was even told that after proving my success after only two years in business! To put it bluntly, it sucks. When will it end for us creative souls to prove ourselves?
It's not just about a person with a camera- it's about us being artists. We have skill and know the science behind manual settings, light, and many other areas. Years from now it will be our photos you will look through that will bring smiles to your face and joy in your hearts. In the long run? It's priceless.
Support local photographers 💕