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A long time client asked
us "your rates seem to have jumped up significantly in the last few years,
how is this to my advantage?"
That's a very reasonable question. We want to deliver the best possible
value to our clients so I'm going to address this question here for all to
Most of our shoots now actually cost our clients less than just a couple of
years ago despite the fact that we've increased our fees for these shoots,
how is this possible?
Here's 3 reasons why this makes our work a better value for you;
1) Better, Faster Results
with lower materials cost;
We've moved to an all digital studio. We've invested tens of thousands of
dollars in state-of-the-art digital camera systems and the finest quality
lenses for them. In addition we've also improved our post production
workflow. (we still offer film
photography for clients requiring or preferring film too).
This means that we do not shoot, nor charge for film and Polaroid materials
on most photo shoots. We also do not charge for processing film, making
proof prints or making scans. These charges were significant
as a full day shoot might result in 20-30 shots on an equal number of rolls
of film. Scans alone were $30 each!
What we do now is shoot digital with a LCD TV on site so the client can see
proofs instantly. We can review the shots as they are taken in a form that
is much closer to the final version than we could get with a small Polaroid
proof. This results in less time waiting to review Polaroids during the
shoot meaning more shooting, less waiting.
Once the shoot is complete we process all of the images on a powerful
workstation and archive everything. Selected images from each setup are
color corrected and saved in a working format. From there we can post a
webpage of the shots for the client to review. The shots are presented as
small "thumbnail" images that once clicked open to a larger image for more
critical review. From shoot to on-line review takes 24hours or less, much
faster than film processing, proof prep and delivery (typically 48hours
The digital images from our current camera system are nearly 5000 pixels
wide. Because the full frame CMOS sensor in the system is so advanced there
is nearly no noise (similar to grain in film) so we can easily enlarge these
images to over 10,000 pixels wide! So what does that mean? Well if you print
a brochure or poster at 300dpi then you could print these images up to 33.3"
across at photographic resolution. For larger images the viewing distance
increases so we can lower the resolution and go up to the size of a semi
truck trailer or billboard.
Of course you will rarely need an image that large, so we also can supply
more manageably sized images of 1500px and 800px to our clients on CD.
These large files also make retouching much better as we can refine images
at the smallest detail.
Higher, but the bottom line is the same or lower.
Many photographers will offer verbal quotes reflecting a day rate or a per
shot rate or even production cost plus use fees. Our quotes include our
creative fees, production costs and liberal use rights with full terms
disclosed in advance. With the lower material costs sighted above the bottom
line will in many cases be lower than a competitors, even though our fees
So why have our fees increased? Several reasons including the fact
that we no longer make a small profit on the materials we used to charge
for, the need to recoup the huge investment in our updated equipment and our
experience and overall approach to your unique project which has created an
increased demand for our services.
What does this unique approach involve? We look at your need for
quality photography not merely as an opportunity to make a nice photo, but
look at your greater marketing objectives. With this we can design and
produce images that are more than nice photos, they are images that
communicate and support your overall marketing goals. We don't just make
nice photos, we are producing images that are part of your overall marketing
And how do you do that? We ask lots of questions. How will the photo
be used? Will it be large or small in it's presentation? What does the image
need to communicate? Scale? Competence? Specific or general concepts? Will
the image be surrounded by other images, graphics, text and titles? Would it
be helpful for the photo's composition to lead the eye to an important
element? These are just a few of the questions we look at. We are skilled at
graphic design, marketing, and publishing as well as having technical skills
and a creative eye for the photographic aspects of your product.
3) We offer alternatives to
fit your budget.
Okay, let's assume that your budget just won't match up with the level of
work we provide. Are you stuck using a photographer that has less
experience, equipment that produces inferior results and being forced to
wait longer and pay more for materials?
Not necessarily! Diane Lacy is our "junior photographer" and has over 10
years experience shooting for her own clients. Her rates are significantly
lower than John Lacy, our "Senior Photographer". She uses all of the same
equipment and the process is very similar. So what don't you get in hiring
our "Junior Shooter?" Well you don't get the unique vision, experience and
expertise of John Lacy, but rest assured John will be involve in your shoot
as a technical consultant and as a mentor to our Junior Shooter. This opens up
options for the client that just can't afford the best, or in some cases
wants to split their budget for various priorities.
So you see we can offer you more than other studios
who may offer you a lower "day-rate", but may actually give you less and
cost you more in the long run.
Gives us a call so we can give you an all inclusive quote on your project!
toll free 800-317-1026