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DPChallenge Forums >> Business of Photography >> Wedding photos, sell the high resolution files?
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Showing posts 26 - 33 of 33, (reverse)
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07/11/2008 07:29:21 AM · #26
Originally posted by Simms:

I am surprised Prof Fate hasnt chipped in yet with his usual rhetoric.


me too...been waiting for it
07/11/2008 08:52:07 AM · #27
Around here 2 or 3 years ago no professional gave out files - it was considered negatives and no one ever sold those. I had a father of a groom try to buy his negatives - he was married some 25 years ago, and the photog still wouldn't sell them - he's sell prints, but not the negatives.

The other extreme are the short sighted weekend warriors that do shoot and burn weddings - no albums, no prints, no profit.

The best compromise is one I got from Michele Celentano - the files are available for $1500. With an album purchase they are $300. You can pick your prices of course, but concept is she wants to sell albums for artistic and financial reasons, so those that want just the files will pay the same price as her average album sale. If they're buying an album and prints it's very unlikely they will ever come back for more prints, unless there is some tragedy such as a fire that wipes out their album and prints - in which case their CD is likely gone as well.

So I've kind of followed that theory - I offer 2 disks, low res (proofs kinda - for 'web, email, slideshows and digital picture frames' and hi-res for $395 to 595..the higher the price the less often it's bought. So one has to decide if they want the files or the money - $395 is a real nice add on sale. I've still got people complaining that's to high - but it' under $1/image - WAY too cheap IMO.

I have also offered it as an incentive to book now at bridal shows - my cost with a nice case is $6 and some time to organize and burn the disk so it's a cheap incentive.
07/11/2008 09:26:23 AM · #28
To whomever said they would have shot better/same photos for free. I have a line in my contract that says no other photographers during the ceremony and until im finished w/ formals. I tell the couple about it too in case they didn't read and understand it. Although I don't enforce it at the wedding, it usually deters some of the Uncle Bobs. Nothing more frustrating than trying to do your hired job that a couple is paying good money for and having another photographer in your way or in the background of your photos. Most people think they are staying out of the way and it is unintentional, Ive never had someone purposely trying to annoy me, but there is really only room for me and my second shooter.

I think your prices are fine for just starting to get your feet wet, you just offer too many prints. Offer half the prints you do now and sell additional prints if needed.

Selling High res CD is the way to go. Get top dollar for it and be done. Im finding MOST clients can't tell the difference between a walmart 8x10 and a Lightworks (best lab in VT) 8x10. I think that comes from them not being used to seeing themselves in a well composed, technically correct photographs. Put it in BW and they are always impressed regardless where its printed. The clients that can tell the difference are really fun to work w/ because they understand quality and usually don't get sticker shock from any of my prices. My point is who cares if they print their own at Walmart, if they are going to Walmart they won't notice the difference anyway.

I think that booking $500 weddings you are not going to get lots of post wedding sales. If you get $300+ for the CD do it. These are your learning weddings anyway. I essentially set up my first 10 weddings so that after the shoot and the CD and any up front prints, we were essentially done. These were fairly low budget and I didn't want these "cheap" weddings hanging over my head as now Im booking more pricey and involved weddings.

My thought is take the money and run. I never turn down cash now for a potential of cash in the future. I try to use my money to make more money...especially because Im still in the beginning stages of my photography business.
07/11/2008 09:27:08 AM · #29
Thanks everyone for the input, I really appreciate it. I think I am going to do it this time, but she can purchase them after paying for a package. I will be revising my prices and packages too. =) Thanks again!
07/11/2008 09:28:28 AM · #30
I got married 2 years ago and paid 5,000 for my wedding photographer, whom I chose after spending countless hours researching the best in my area. He had 3 packages at the time I went with the middle one, not the cheapest, not the most expensive. Here is what it included:
8 hours of coverage the day of
Engagement session
46 page top of the line album (and it was)
DVD slideshow
High resolution images on CD

It was absolutely worth every penny, even though I paid more in photography than any of my other vendors. I would have chose him even if he hadn't offered the high resolution images, but I sure was glad he did. I keep the cd in a safe deposti box.

And just to give him props, here is his site - //www.tpellowe.com/

Message edited by author 2008-07-11 09:29:24.
07/11/2008 09:33:27 AM · #31
Like others have said, the first thing you should do is your homework. what are others in your local charging? every town and location is different as to what brides are looking for and what is being offered and for how much. this information will be far more usefull to you than the fractured oppinions of a bunch of photographers from all over the globe.

That said... much of what you offer is going to be based on what you're comfortable with as well. I, like some others, am wary or people taking my photos to wal mart or costco, and getting crappy prints... no one ver asks "ewe! who was your printer?" they will say "Man, the colours are all off!!! who was your photograher?". I do offer the DVD if they really want it, i charge a minimu of $1000 for it (about $1/photo), the price is also to make them concider hom many prints they could get for the same price...

Just my .02 hope this is all hlping you.

BTW: I too think our prices in general are low... researcing what others are chrging for packages and pricing your self similarly is a good thing.
07/12/2008 03:07:13 AM · #32
Originally posted by Maverick:

Originally posted by geoffb:

Originally posted by Maverick:

I'm not sure what kind of package my sister purchased but looking at $8 for a 4x6, $100+ for anything over 8x10 on the photog's website is frustrating, especially when I could have easily taken comparable quality images for free.

Sure, you could have probably done a similar thing for your sister for free, but how much did your equipment cost? How much time have you put into refining your photography skills, reading about technique and composition, and editing in Photoshop?


Quite a bit (the difference between our kits was a D300 vs. a D200 - the wedding was shot with a 17-55 f/2.8 exclusively) and as I said, I'm confident I could have gotten all of the shots that were taken. My kit was built around wedding shooting and I've put in plenty of time - I'm not an expert but consider myself capable and have a couple years experience shooting weddings & assisting other photogs


I think you misinterpreted what I said. I was saying you are probably more than capable of taking the images–as good as or better than the photographer she used, no doubt. What I was saying is that if you add up all the costs of equipment and time that you've invested in your photography, it would be unfair to yourself and your colleagues to completely undercut the market. Now, I'm not saying you can't give your sister some free prints every now and then; that's just something family members do. However, if your sister (or anyone else) leaves the wedding expecting all photographers to issue them prints at cost, then everyone suffers.

We pay doctors not just the costs to cover their equipment and time in the operating room, but also for the years they've invested in their craft. Same goes for pilots, teachers, etc., and it is important that the public understand the same condition for photography.

I'll reiterate my agreement that $100 per 8x10 is too much. However, it is important to point out that $0 is too little, by any standards.
07/14/2008 12:24:59 PM · #33
I know I'm a little late to the party but a few photographers around here sell the digital negatives on the one year anniversary. That way it gives them a chance to make some money in print sales too :0)

It's a great compromise I think...
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