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Are these Realistic Rates?

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  #1  
Old 02-15-2011, 04:37 PM
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Are these Realistic Rates?

So I am in the process of setting up my Rates. I feel I do good quality work and should start seeing some compensation for the long hours I spend into retouching. here goes...


20 or more images- 8$ an image
10 images- 10$ and image
1-5 Images- 15$ an image


Also... what is your preferred method of payment? I mostly see paypal.

THANK YOU!

- Jessica
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Old 02-15-2011, 04:47 PM
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Re: Are these Realistic Rates?

You're leaving yourself very little wiggle room there J. What if those images take a day apiece? Even if those were hourly prices you'd still be short changing yourself so be as vague as possible! Good luck with your venture.
R.
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Old 02-15-2011, 05:41 PM
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Re: Are these Realistic Rates?

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Originally Posted by Repairman View Post
You're leaving yourself very little wiggle room there J. What if those images take a day apiece? Even if those were hourly prices you'd still be short changing yourself so be as vague as possible! Good luck with your venture.
R.
This is true. I should probably just talk to the client first and figure out what type of retouching they are looking for.

Thanks for the input!
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Old 02-17-2011, 08:54 AM
fraiseap fraiseap is offline
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Re: Are these Realistic Rates?

This is an issue that photographers are up against a lot so I will answer as a photographer (who occasionally has a requirement for retouching services).

It is often useful to ask what the clients budget is rather than to have a standard rate. You can then get into a discussion which goes "OK, for that I could do a basic retouch on X number of images. If you require a more detailed retouch then I would only be able to do Y number of images"

It is useful to have a couple of examples of a "basic retouch" and a "detailed retouch" to show the client - my guess is that many clients will say "I can see that the detailed retouch is what I want so need to revise my budget"

Bear in mind that the price you quote cannot be too high (you will frighten the client away) but must leave room for negotiation (eg "I can see that your budget is tight so, if I can use your images for my portfolio I can offer a Z% reduction" etc)

Hope that helps
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Old 02-17-2011, 09:02 AM
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Re: Are these Realistic Rates?

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Originally Posted by fraiseap View Post
This is an issue that photographers are up against a lot so I will answer as a photographer (who occasionally has a requirement for retouching services).

It is often useful to ask what the clients budget is rather than to have a standard rate. You can then get into a discussion which goes "OK, for that I could do a basic retouch on X number of images. If you require a more detailed retouch then I would only be able to do Y number of images"

It is useful to have a couple of examples of a "basic retouch" and a "detailed retouch" to show the client - my guess is that many clients will say "I can see that the detailed retouch is what I want so need to revise my budget"

Bear in mind that the price you quote cannot be too high (you will frighten the client away) but must leave room for negotiation (eg "I can see that your budget is tight so, if I can use your images for my portfolio I can offer a Z% reduction" etc)

Hope that helps

This is a fantastic help. I really dislike the idea of set rates but that's all I see other retouchers advertise. I absolutely understand a limited budget and I am more than willing to work with people seeing as retouching doesn't feel like work to me.

Thank you again. this was a tremendous help.

- Jessica
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Old 02-17-2011, 09:59 AM
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Re: Are these Realistic Rates?

I mostly retouch my own photos. When I work on am image taken by someone else, it's for practice. I'll admit that I'm totally clueless regarding retouching rates. I've given some thought to offering up my retouching services. I may do so regardless because the challenge and experience are attractive on a personal level. However, from a business standpoint, I can't justify opening Photoshop for $8 an image for anything except the most basic 10-15 minute retouch.

I'm not knocking your prices, I'm just curious. How much time to you anticipate spending per image and what sort of retouching would be expected?
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Old 02-17-2011, 11:06 AM
fraiseap fraiseap is offline
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Re: Are these Realistic Rates?

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Originally Posted by drode View Post
I mostly retouch my own photos. When I work on am image taken by someone else, it's for practice. I'll admit that I'm totally clueless regarding retouching rates. I've given some thought to offering up my retouching services. I may do so regardless because the challenge and experience are attractive on a personal level. However, from a business standpoint, I can't justify opening Photoshop for $8 an image for anything except the most basic 10-15 minute retouch.

I'm not knocking your prices, I'm just curious. How much time to you anticipate spending per image and what sort of retouching would be expected?
Valid points but, assuming Jessica is relatively new at this and is trying to get started as a business, it is essential to get networking and play the long game. Photographers, models, stylists etc start off doing lots of work for low rates in the hope that someone will remember them when a more lucrative contract comes along. Admittedly, many have to wait a long time, and, for some, lucrative work never comes along. But charging a full market rate as an unknown will not get you much work (IMHO)
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Old 02-17-2011, 11:56 AM
drode drode is offline
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Re: Are these Realistic Rates?

You make a great point. The argument is if you do work for free or cheaply, you are somehow cutting other folks rates and hurting the industry. How then does a new photog/MUA/model/retoucher, get in the game at all? How do you gain experience and make contacts?

You work cheap and maybe even free to cut your teeth. IMO, You earn your chops by taking whatever work you can get in the beginning. Hopefully, if you work hard and develop your skills and contacts, you can command higher rates and work on higher end projects.

Sorry about getting off topic. I didn't mean to hijack Jessica's thread.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fraiseap View Post
Valid points but, assuming Jessica is relatively new at this and is trying to get started as a business, it is essential to get networking and play the long game. Photographers, models, stylists etc start off doing lots of work for low rates in the hope that someone will remember them when a more lucrative contract comes along. Admittedly, many have to wait a long time, and, for some, lucrative work never comes along. But charging a full market rate as an unknown will not get you much work (IMHO)
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Old 02-17-2011, 02:48 PM
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Re: Are these Realistic Rates?

I find quoting an hourly rate and estimating the amount of time required per image (based on a discussion with the client of what they would like to see changed/fixed) to work better than a flat "per image" rate. This also discourages clients from dumping hundreds of sub-par images in your lap and expecting them all to go over the moon. Hopefully instead it gets them to choose a few select images they would like to see beautified and helps to manage their expectations up front in terms of what is possible and what is affordable.
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Old 02-17-2011, 03:25 PM
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Re: Are these Realistic Rates?

Adam raises a very good point. Never drop your price without getting something in return - however trivial that something might be. If you quote $500 and the client says 'I only have $250' it is important not to roll over and except. Get a concession from them even if it's only more time to do the job or payment on delivery. Be wary of using a spratt to catch a mackeral - if you work cheap you'll get cheap. It is soul destroying to work all hours for a pittance and your work will suffer. Don't be a busy fool - if your good you'll get the work. People use retouchers for a variety of reasons; one being to save their butt because they screwed up. People pay good money to get out of a fix!
R.
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