One process that plagues many photographers is setting pricing. Whether you’re just starting out or re-evaluating your business, having a deliberate process for determining your pricing is key. One of the common complaints among photo buyers, whether they’re professional art buyers or consumers, is that pricing seems to simply be arbitrary. To a certain extent they’re correct, but being able to justify how you’ve arrived at your pricing goes a long way towards blunting some of that criticism. [Read more...]
My two-person show “Rhythms” opened last night in San Jose, and the reception was a blast. It can be a challenge to get the most out of a show of your photography, I’m often astounded by how many artists believe that their work will “sell itself”, but nothing could be farther from the truth. Here are a few tips for getting the most out of your photo exhibitions.
1. Make sure your pricing makes sense. Most venues will want about half of the gross of any sales of your work, which means that your half has to cover printing, matting, framing, labels, and oh, you wanted to make a profit, too, right? One of the biggest mistakes I see artists make is underpricing their work. If you don’t make it clear that to folks that your work is valuable, why should they believe otherwise? [Read more...]
Pricing fine art photographic prints is always a challenge, there’s a lot of costs involved, a lot of competition in the marketplace, and a lot of variation in prices out there in the marketplace. While I don’t have the One True Way of pricing for photographic prints, I do have a few thoughts on the matter for those of you considering your own print sales.
As a starting point, you first need to figure out your cost of goods. Start with the photographic print itself. If you own your own printer, that cost will include the cost of the ink, the paper, and the amortized cost of the printer itself, Mark Segal has a nice article explaining how to do this over at the Luminous Landscape. In my own case, I print through an outside service, so I know up front that the cost of one of my standard-sized prints (16×11 inches image size) is about $25, then I add to that a few bucks for shipping or my time/effort to pick it up. [Read more...]
I understand that things are tough right now for a lot of creative professionals like us. I know several photographers who are really struggling to make ends meet, a couple who have gotten out of the business completely, and a couple who have branched out into completely different fields to stay afloat. I also know several who are so busy they’re turning away work. Regardless of your particular situation a periodic review of your pricing structure is part of doing business. Many times that review will lead you to the conclusion that you need to raise prices. But knowing your pricing is too low and implementing a price change are two distinct steps.
Anyone who’s been in this business long enough has a story about being ripped off. Whether it’s about unpaid invoices, clients who make unreasonable demands, or outright fraud, my experience has been there are two types of professional photographers. Those who have been cheated, and those who will. We’ll talk about invoicing, unreasonable clients and fraud later. Right now – stolen images. [Read more...]
Last week I was talking to a potential client who was wanting a portrait session for her baby. She wanted my full session and she planned to buy three 16×20 prints. When I told her the price she said, “Oh, that’s way too much money… especially in today’s economy.” [Read more...]