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Single jobs that bill at over $100

View Poll Results: How often do you get single-image $100 retouch jobs?
Never 21 27.63%
Almost never 15 19.74%
Occasionally 23 30.26%
Regularly 17 22.37%
Voters: 76. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-25-2005, 07:42 PM
Doug Nelson's Avatar
Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,062
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Single jobs that bill at over $100

I'm not talking about jobs for commercial clients, but 1-up jobs probably for the mom or some other relative of the people in the picture. I've found the $100 mark to be a pretty strong barrier.

How often have you actually gotten single image retouch jobs where the final bill (just for retouching) exceeded $100?

Last edited by Doug Nelson; 01-25-2005 at 09:29 PM.
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Old 01-26-2005, 03:56 PM
westsidemaurice westsidemaurice is offline
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Albuquerque NM
Posts: 33
Thumbs down

I'm just putting a new biz together and can't comment on current customer responses, but for years I used to charge far more than $100 for retoucher's work that I middle-manned and delivered to clients through the custom photo lab whose services I sold. And that was 20 years ago!

If you can't get $100, somebody else can't get $50 for the same job, and somebody else can get $500 for it. There's no such thing as too expensive or too cheap.
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Old 01-26-2005, 05:16 PM
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Chip Hildreth Chip Hildreth is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Hillsborough, NC
Posts: 131
I guess being in a historic town makes a difference, maybe it's the storefront; I'm not sure. I can't think of a single digital restoration job that we've billed at less than $100.00. Now that does include prints, usually multiple 8x10 and 5x7.
We don't get easy restorations though, typically 2-5 hours on the invoice and frequently quite a bit more actual.
I've been pretty squeemish handing people $300 and $400 invoices before and then been greatly relieved when they left happy. Those are the ones that repeat too. I've got a couple of customers, older folks on fixed incomes that bring me lots of work and I cut my pricing way down. Now that I think of it; lots of those would've been under $100 on the individual pieces but they always come in with several pics at once.
The guy that got me into restoration to begin with is still doing it in nearby Chapel Hill and I know most of his invoices are over $100 including prints.

We charge $75.00 per hour for all digital imaging and design work and our invoices always reflect that. I frequently find excuses to credit the customer with discounts for things like non-profit orgs, senior citizens, veterans, local churches, frequent customers, etc.

With all that said, I have to qualify it by saying that we will soon move out of this shop and into a nearby house. Even at those rates we can't swing the overhead of a downtown storefront.

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Old 04-18-2005, 10:20 AM
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Jim Conway Jim Conway is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Oregon City, Oregon
Posts: 212
Seems that the high end jobs are the ones that are still available. As far as restoration is concerned the bottom has dropped out the low end market so most of the orders we have now run $350 and up. I'm lucky enough to be in a building I own in a highly visable Historic District (End of The Oregon Trail) and surrounded by several communities where the income is in the high end for the nation so business survival is not in doubt - we just have to work harder for the money when the ten minute $89.95 jobs are no longer walking in the door as they were in past years!

Jim Conway
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Old 04-18-2005, 12:11 PM
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grafx grafx is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Northeast Florida
Posts: 229
I only see $$$ like that when I do a same-day "rush" order. My rates are based on my geographic area and are fairly low.
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Old 04-21-2005, 08:37 PM
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Imagepro4U Imagepro4U is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Pa.
Posts: 9
I'm just like "Westsidemaurice". There was a time I was getting single jobs that sometimes billed well over $100, and that did not include the 50% surcharge the lab added to the bill. Of course before "digital retouching", I had very little competition. Now it seems everyone is doing was used be considered a real specialty.
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Old 05-04-2005, 02:30 AM
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chiko321 chiko321 is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Central US
Posts: 18
Red face Smack!!!

That's the sound of me hitting my head.
Historic towns....the OLDER THE BETTER!!!! why didn't i think of that before.
Especially in cultures where tradition is paramount!!! OMG i'm slow.
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Old 05-30-2005, 03:39 PM
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nicks nicks is offline
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Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 12
I could never charged $100...

I never got chance to work directly for a client.. Generally I was doing the work of middle - men I have to charge less to them, sometime fix rate for bulk work ... even I have done work of major restoraions in $30.. ( for regular clients only )... but now I have started my own site and hope to charge a bit more...

- Nick..
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Old 06-14-2005, 04:03 PM
ganguy ganguy is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Gananoque, Ontario Canada
Posts: 5
I'm low-end

I just got started selling my retouching and restorations after about one year of practicing on family and friends. Most of my work comes from a local photolab, and I charge between $25 and $50 per hour. But, I have to give a fixed price in advance, so when I get lucky, I may be able to do a job in a few minutes. I'm using PS elements 3.0, and some plug-ins. Ocassionally I use Picture Window as it has a border feature I like.
My scanner is a Microtek 6800, which is new, but very slow and awkward. I need something better.
I love this forum!
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Old 06-15-2005, 04:01 PM
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Darren Gibson Darren Gibson is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Yorkshire, UK
Posts: 21

All I can say is, if you have trouble charging $100, try the UK market - before I discovered the wonderful resource of RetouchPro, I was getting quotes of £250 (approx 455 US Dollars) to restore a picture of my grandfather (view my post for help here - eternal gratitude to Flora)

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