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1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

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  #11  
Old 01-20-2009, 03:32 PM
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pixel_monkey pixel_monkey is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

I wouldn't worry about India too much. Producing good color requires skill, patience, the right tools, and more importantly, a set of trained eyes. I'm not saying that all workers in India are incapable of producing good color. They simply can't afford to spend the required time to properly correct a file for the low wages they're getting. Their priority is quantity in order to make a profit.
My previous company used to have a sister division in India and the files we got back from them were just horrendous. Some files we found were simply done with Auto Level, and others we had no clue what went wrong. So, the company sent 2 guys over there to train/investigate and the report that came back was almost as what we'd expected. The so-called studio was not properly set up. They were color correcting on uncalibrated low-end monitors. More shockingly, we found one of the workers there was colorblind. It just shows they'd hire anyone as long as he/she knows how to use a computer.
There was barely any improvement after the training. We had to deal with their sub-standard work for more than a year before we got rid of them when upper management finally realized that it actually cost the company more time and money by having the in-house retouchers working OT rescuing files coming back from India.
I hope your company realizes that you guys are better off by leaving the work for the in-house retouchers that know what they're doing.
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  #12  
Old 01-20-2009, 09:59 PM
Quantum3Studio Quantum3Studio is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

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Originally Posted by pixel_monkey View Post
I wouldn't worry about India too much. Producing good color requires skill, patience, the right tools, and more importantly, a set of trained eyes. I'm not saying that all workers in India are incapable of producing good color. They simply can't afford to spend the required time to properly correct a file for the low wages they're getting. Their priority is quantity in order to make a profit.
My previous company used to have a sister division in India and the files we got back from them were just horrendous. Some files we found were simply done with Auto Level, and others we had no clue what went wrong. So, the company sent 2 guys over there to train/investigate and the report that came back was almost as what we'd expected. The so-called studio was not properly set up. They were color correcting on uncalibrated low-end monitors. More shockingly, we found one of the workers there was colorblind. It just shows they'd hire anyone as long as he/she knows how to use a computer.
There was barely any improvement after the training. We had to deal with their sub-standard work for more than a year before we got rid of them when upper management finally realized that it actually cost the company more time and money by having the in-house retouchers working OT rescuing files coming back from India.
I hope your company realizes that you guys are better off by leaving the work for the in-house retouchers that know what they're doing.
That is what I meant about "they're not trusteable"... Plus, I have heard many companies have had problems, not only in the bad quality (I also have seen really bad done jobs), but also about payments. There are many hindus that just receive the payment and run. Happens the same in Argentina, the country where I'm from.

There are lot of foreing companies in Argentina already set up here, doing not only retouching, also motion graphics, websites and the like.

I'm a freelancer photo retoucher, I live in Argentina and I work for the US and the U.K. and I'm really passing a good life thanks to my clients. I do a little more job than what I'm paid, but's okay, I like doing a bit more of effort, but yes, I've lot of experience, skills, lot of knowledge and high-end technology.
Actually, who speaks English has a big tool to learn tutorials and work with that

Anyway, the big problem are not the hindus, at the end of the day, foreing companies chose the hindus instead experts, whatever the country they come from. As I have said before, hindus works for 0.01 usd cent each picture. Read again: 0.01 usd...

Conclusion: First World Companies are too greedy most of the cases.
Conlsusion 2: I wouldn't have a Nikon D700 with an 80-400mm; a 14-24mm and a little 50mm and 2 widescreen Apple monitors if not having my clients
The Conclusion 3 is: I'm still wearing the same clothes I bought 7 years ago XD LOL
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  #13  
Old 01-21-2009, 04:15 AM
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Markzebra Markzebra is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

first point -religion certainly does not have anything to do with it. And thinking "oh they'll NEVER be able to do this" is patronising, and obviously wrong. They of course meaning Indians, or Chinese.

There is one interesting point though -Conclusion: First World Companies are too greedy most of the cases. - not sure I would use the word greedy, when they can happily work for £1.50 an hour. But there is a serious point that where there is a shortage of basics, its easy to see how difficult it would be to focus on the the finer points that the work requires. This only applies to higher end work though I think.

Soon as someone gets their act together over there though…

Last edited by Markzebra; 01-21-2009 at 04:22 AM.
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  #14  
Old 01-21-2009, 07:51 AM
Quantum3Studio Quantum3Studio is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

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Originally Posted by Markzebra View Post
first point -religion certainly does not have anything to do with it. And thinking "oh they'll NEVER be able to do this" is patronising, and obviously wrong. They of course meaning Indians, or Chinese.

There is one interesting point though -Conclusion: First World Companies are too greedy most of the cases. - not sure I would use the word greedy, when they can happily work for £1.50 an hour. But there is a serious point that where there is a shortage of basics, its easy to see how difficult it would be to focus on the the finer points that the work requires. This only applies to higher end work though I think.

Soon as someone gets their act together over there though…
Well... How should be called the people who lives in India? Indians or Hindus? I thought they are Hindus, since all people calls them in that way. My apologizes if not, I don't know how to call them. I also have been told by my clients they have been scammed/hanged many times by Indians/Hindus.

In most of the cases, people who live in India cannot achieve neither a basic standard of work. I see lot of works made by that people in this area and they just cannot do a good cutting out, for example, nor a good glamourizing, skin softening and the like. Of course, tehre are lot of people working as freelancers today, and quantity always generates bad quality results. I mean, there are too much newies. I'm always talking about the matter that competes to us (Photo Retouching).

Well... Maybe the world is not "greedy", but avaricious. I see companies from countries where the same job would cost around 20-60 dollars each pic (just google photo retouching websites and see the prices tab) depending on the job, of course. But mostly, head sweeping, color correction, levels, color boost and that kind of parameters for family portraits. Fashion Retouching is much more higher 'cause the parameters are much more high in quality and work.
And there are those clients who are not a company, just individuals that take bad technical pics and they want a freelancer that fix their mistakes or lazyness because they just want to profit.
Do you know getafreelancer.com? I think it's the most whorehouse of freelancers. Clients found there pays no more than 30 dollars for a whole projects, which can involve 40; 80; 100 and even 1000 pictures and freelancers always bid 30 usd and most of them are from India.
I have been selected 2 times there by the client, the first one was between 80 providers and the second client selected me between 176 providers and I don't go lower than 3 usd per pic. What I'm trying to say is that most clients doesn't care about quality excepts for the 0.01% of all the retouching projects I have seen in that website, and what I do with the pictures should be cost around 7.5-10 dollars and even more. But of course, I understand most clients there are just individuals, not companies.

I'm looking for high-end clients, in order to use all the knowledge I have, but I don't know where to find them, so I'm stuck in getafreelancer.com (I recommend you joining there (for free) in order to monitor how it works what I'm saying) and also stuck in iFreelance.com.

Now, I have a request from a wedding photographer from Wichita, Kansas, but he's willing to pay around 1 usd per picture, which is unrespectful but also, what he can pay because he earns US$ 1K per wedding, but that's not my problem, you know. If I would be him, I would be looking for a higher payment, moving to another city, making my photograpohs something unique or so. I have seen about the wedding costs in Wichita and they starts at 1K, but there are also photographers who earns +3K per weeding and those are the ones I want to contact, but emailing to their websitres is not a solution. I already have sent +100 e-mails to Singapore (great quality there), +100 to U.K. and the same amount of e-mails to Australia and USA. It's a pain in the ass sending +100 e-mails to each continent, looking through libraries of photographers, studios and such.

I would appreciate a lot if you know how to get high-end clients

Thanks for the reply, mate

Mart
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  #15  
Old 01-21-2009, 09:17 AM
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twopoint0 twopoint0 is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

I know of at least one major NYC premedia company that's outsourcing to India. Keep in mind that this is a retouching house, who's business is selling retouching, sending it's work out then marking it up. Also bear in mind that there are a lot of retouchers in NY right now sitting around with nothing to do.

If I was running that company, and my job was on the line because profits are down, I might choose to do the same thing. Our industry created/embraced the technologies of high speed data transfers, color management and soft proofing- so, I guess we gave ourselves enough rope to hang with.

Outsourcing overseas is the future boys, get used to it. Besides, I always thought it'd be fun to own a lunch truck, just selling hot dogs. You want mustard with that?
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  #16  
Old 01-21-2009, 09:27 AM
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Benny Profane Benny Profane is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

I can always fall back into the gigolo biz.
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  #17  
Old 01-21-2009, 09:29 AM
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twopoint0 twopoint0 is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

At least that can't be sent to India!
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  #18  
Old 01-21-2009, 09:41 AM
Quantum3Studio Quantum3Studio is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

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Originally Posted by twopoint0 View Post
Outsourcing overseas is the future boys, get used to it. Besides, I always thought it'd be fun to own a lunch truck, just selling hot dogs. You want mustard with that?
It's a reality I face up everyday. I mean, that future is today. There are lots of website which slogan says:

"Our site is global and we have freelancers from India, Romania, Russia, Ukraine, United States, UK and many other parts of the world. Bookmark our homepage to make sure you don't forget about our website next time you need to develop an IT project for yourself or your company. Outsourcing is hiring an outside organization to perform services such as information processing and applications development".

I think they have changed something there... In the old slogan it said something like "You will have your projects for the 50% and even less!!! Join today!!!" And yes, it's true. More than true, becuase clients from that website (which is the biggest one) use to say "I have 200 images to be cutted out from background, budfget is $ 30".

It's happening since 2 years ago or so...

Freelance was a very respected person, as Wikipedia says. Type "Freelance" in wkipedia and well... read...
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  #19  
Old 01-21-2009, 09:43 AM
Quantum3Studio Quantum3Studio is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

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Originally Posted by twopoint0 View Post
At least that can't be sent to India!
Some clients send even the clothes overseas and you have to find the models and the studio, do around 100 photos, retouch them and charge no more than 150 usd...
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  #20  
Old 01-21-2009, 09:55 AM
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twopoint0 twopoint0 is offline
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Re: 1st post, experienced retoucher, next move???

Quantum-
I was referring to Benny's Gigolo Service, but I get your point.
The other part of the cheap work equation is the clients willingness to accept lower and lower standards of quality. That's been going on for some time already- just ask old school designers and typographers who considered typography an art. That art has been exchanged for the default settings in the page layout software that shipped with the PC.
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