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Author Topic: Want To Justify a 5Diii - Some Questions  (Read 1468 times)

keithfullermusic

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Want To Justify a 5Diii - Some Questions
« on: April 08, 2012, 10:54:52 PM »
First off, I want a 5Diii like woah.  You don't need to tell me that it's sweet and that I should get one.  So here goes...

I am a poor grad student.  I make some money on the side creating websites and doing odd jobs now and then, but nothing that is bringing in the big bucks.  I am basically a full-time student with lots of free time on my hands when I'm not studying and taking classes.

Currently, I own a 50D, which I love.  I would love to start doing some event photography and possibly weddings and things like that.  If I were to do so I really think I would need a FF with good high ISO capabilities.  Even the though the 50D is great, it just won't cut it for things like that as a primary body.

If you are just starting out, what can you expect to charge for events and weddings?  If I think I can make $3,500 in a reasonable amount of time I will go ahead and pull the trigger.  I will also point out that my fiancĂ© is a great photographer and she would probably go with me and take pictures at the same time to double our shots and perspectives.

Right now I have glass that I am totally happy with (20mm 2.8 - which will be fairly wide on a FF and has a great look on a crop, a 50mm 1.8 - not the best 50mm, but still a sweet lens, a 100mm 2.8 - great macro and portrait lens, and a 100-400L - probably won't be used at events), as well as light (430EXii & YN560), and other extras (tripod, gels, mini bounce, timers, wireless, etc.)

Any real world feedback would be highly appreciated.  Thanks.
5Diii - 50D - 100mm f/2.8, 85mm f/1.2 vii - 50mm f/1.4, 20mm f/2.8, 70-200 f/2.8 vii - 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS, 430 EX II, YN560, YN568, Bowen's 500R's
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Want To Justify a 5Diii - Some Questions
« on: April 08, 2012, 10:54:52 PM »

V8Beast

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Re: Want To Justify a 5Diii - Some Questions
« Reply #1 on: April 08, 2012, 11:43:00 PM »
If you are just starting out, what can you expect to charge for events and weddings? 

As much as you can get away with! In all seriousness, I see lots of people that basically work for free, or next to nothing, just to get their foot in the door. That's OK in some instances, because their work is so mediocre it really isn't worth paying for. That said, in looking through your portfolio, your skills are head and shoulders above these hacks :)

I've seen lots of people pigeon-hole themselves by under-pricing their services when starting out. Then once business picks up, the expectation is set that you're willing to work for cheap. You don't want to be known as the guy who does amazing work for peanuts. Everyone needs to make a living.

Whatever you set your initial rates when starting out is up to you, obviously, but once you have enough gigs under your belt to update your portfolio, it might be a good idea to adjust your rates to fair market value right away. Word of mouth advertising from happy clients is the best form of advertising, but you don't want dozens of happy clients telling their friends how cheaply you're willing to work for. Ultimately, it's basic supply and demand. If there are more requests for your services than you have time for, then your pricing can be adjusted to reflect that :)

Hope that helps, and good luck!

keithfullermusic

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Re: Want To Justify a 5Diii - Some Questions
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2012, 11:50:30 PM »
thanks for the reply.  believe me, i would never do stuff for free, and i hope others wouldn't either.  the "foot in the door" tactic just hurts everyone.  people who say stuff like, "it will help your portfolio" and bs like that are people who will never pay, and as long as there are people willing to "build their portfolio" people will always expect to get pics for free.
5Diii - 50D - 100mm f/2.8, 85mm f/1.2 vii - 50mm f/1.4, 20mm f/2.8, 70-200 f/2.8 vii - 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS, 430 EX II, YN560, YN568, Bowen's 500R's
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Wideopen

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Re: Want To Justify a 5Diii - Some Questions
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2012, 03:26:36 AM »
I was in the same boat a few years back and couldn't justify a 5D purchase. For a while i started out shooting small parties and gatherings and being sorta a backup photographer for occasional events and weddings with a T2i LOL. I invested in some nice glass and a flash along the way with money out of my pocket when i could justify those purchases. I pretty much worked for free with my camera to build a portfolio during the beginning. When people would ask what i charged i told them i don't charge but donations are greatly appreciated. Ive been fortunate enough to get a few good size donations and recommendations by word of mouth thru friends and family. Ive worked along side of my friends who are pros and they were kind enough to give me some clients. I rented cameras and lenses to pull off some major events and took shots that made the clients more than happy and I eventually made enough to buy a 7D. The process began all over again and fast forward to today I have a on going growing client list and happy returning customers. I couldn't afford to buy the 5D and 5D mark II when i started out so i just rented it as well as lenses to get by and get the job done. Don't sell yourself short because at the end of the day its not about the camera used its about the person that captured the photo. Don't let your equipment limit your creativity and ability to create awesome photos. If you can't afford it rent it.  ;D it worked for me.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2012, 03:30:22 AM by Wideopen »

Daniel Flather

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Re: Want To Justify a 5Diii - Some Questions
« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2012, 03:29:09 PM »
The OP needs moar OCD, like me.
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prestonpalmer

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Re: Want To Justify a 5Diii - Some Questions
« Reply #5 on: April 09, 2012, 04:04:44 PM »
Keith,

I like where your head is at.  And your work is excellent.  Certainly worthy of producing an income for you.  My recommendation for you, and others in your situation would be to use the camera and equipment that you have to start making money before dumping money into camera equipment.  Prove to yourself that you are able to work with clients, and generate cashflow before spending more money.  I've worked with a lot of photographers in your situation, and watched a lot of them get in over their heads financially before ever even knowing what running a photography business was all about, or what it was like to work with clients day in and day out. Keep in mind.  Only 10% of a photography business is taking great pictures.  Its the other 90% that determines if you will make any money.  Ive seen the most incredible photographers not be able to generate a penny, and some very mediocre ones make tons of money because they are good at the other 90%.  My recommendation: Get in front of some clients, make some money. How about make a goal to make enough money to pay for your new 5D3 before purchasing it.  A good goal, and motivation to perform. 

If you have questions, or need some inspiration, feel free to shoot me an email or call me at the number on my website. 

If you really want to dive into this thing head first, take a look here:
http://www.brovadoweddings.com/blog/photography-apprentice/

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Re: Want To Justify a 5Diii - Some Questions
« Reply #5 on: April 09, 2012, 04:04:44 PM »