Prep Part Three – The Final Installment

Almost there! Just a couple more days before the Canwell Show and I’m putting on the finishing touches.   All my photographs have been mounted, bagged and tagged and now for pricing.

Not exactly Canwell, but a big tent at WOMAD 2009 = same but different
Naturally all my photos are extraordinary and everyone will pay loads and want lots.  Now for the reality check: they’re very good but people are choosy, fickle, discriminating, selective – you name it!  Difficult to know how to give everyone something they want and at realistic (and profitable) price point.
So I hit the Internet (the world at one’s finger tips) and went for stroll around various photography sites to establish some sensible figures.
I’d like to see these sorts of crowds at my stall please.  OK so this is the Louvre and these people are photographing the Mona Lisa.  I have dreams 🙂
Many thanks to the following sites for advice, support and providing a great jumping off platform for a keen amateur photographer going pro.  All you never wanted to know about pricing and copyright from:
on  LinkedIn– Photography Business – I haven’t added anything profound to their discussions yet but have been avidly listening in and learning a lot.
I’ve found a few great sites and I’ll stay with them for a bit.  Any more at this point and I’ll get carried away and never leave the house again, spending all my time on the Internet (I haven’t even mentioned magazines and books!).  Not a good option for a photographer who should be out and about.
The list of my essential sites continues:
and of course
The Royal Photographic Society (of which I am a member)
I’m sure there are loads more (and if you have a great one please let me know) but as you can see there are lots of sources to answer lots of questions. 
Right back to pricing:  there is one piece of advice most of these sites agree on regarding pricing –  you have to be realistic and mostly sort it out for yourself, but thankfully within some pretty well determined parameters.  They also agree it is difficult for a new business because you need to know your product and how it relates to your customer.  Good news is they are encouraging and say you will get better with practice.  Hmmmmmm?  So from here it gets easier….. Right?
A car and graffiti in Cuba 2004 – I just like this one
I must make (yet another) aside here.  I have found the online photography world and the real life one, to be very very accommodating to the new businesses.  Its not nearly as cut-throat or competitive as one might expect it to be.  Thank you!
One of the main headaches of being self employed is always pricing.  You’re never quite sure where to put your price point for fear of turning away work you need (particularly during this recession) and you can often be in danger of underselling yourself so you’re at risk of taken advantage of.
Not Staffordshire and not a British cow despite the Underground sign top left – Goa 2009
As for my pricing, I have decided to hit the higher end of the middle road.  I have a small (at the moment) client base that are consistent and and reliable.  I offer a great product, fantastic customer service and people genuinely like doing business with me.  Now if only my current crop of clients had more friends and they all came to the Canwell show.
Sorry, its become a bit of a long blog.  Thank you for staying with me and I hope to see you in Staffordshire this Saturday.  In body or spirit, but body with a cheque book would be preferred!
I’ll let you know next time how it goes.  I’ll bet you can hardly wait.
 Up close – Shingle beach in Dungeness Kent 2009

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