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How much would you charge?

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  • How much would you charge?


    I am just curious how much you guys would charge a customer
    for this picture restoration...

    Ang how long would it take you to complete the work. I just want an estimate so I can ccompare to myself.

    Originally the picture wase broken in half in the bottom portion horizontally, but since I do not have a big professional scanner, I had to break the picture into more pieces which made the process longer.

    Thanks much :-) I really appreciate everyone's expertise.
    Attached Files

  • #2
    Balky, this is what we would quote. Note that the items that have a range, it depends on how the customer wants us to handle the image.

    -Scan and assemble / optimize = $30
    -faces, left to right, #1 & #3 look like no to little work $0
    -#2 $25
    -mom #4 $100 to $150 depending on the source for the hair
    -Background, extend top $100
    -Floor: Vingette $25, or extend floor $100
    -Arms on mom / Clothing / legs $50
    -8x10 digital print (just guessing on size) $33

    Total ranges from $363 to $488 plus tax
    We would quote 3 weeks
    Thanks, I am excited to see how others would quote this one also


    • #3
      Based on your website pricing structure, about $100-140 should get this job done. Roughly 4 to 5 hours.

      The quote should also depend on how far your customer wants you to take the restoration. The photo itself is not in that bad of shape, the missing parts are the kicker, those will take some time to put together, unless the customer can provide another picture with hair.

      Personally, I would quote this at about 5 hours or $175.00 I charge a flat hourly rate. Less if she has a photo for the hair and arm.

      Let us know how it goes!



      • #4
        This is the whole point for me to know how much YOU would charge and how long it would take YOU to complete.

        I would probably agree most with roger_ele's price quote!

        I may not complete the work as quickly as some professionals would, but I'd rather do it a bit more slowly BUT more qualitatively! And the speed will come with experience :-)

        I know how much I charge, and I know how long it took me to complete it because I did complete the work already. I did not use any parts from other pictures to fill in the missed areas. Everything was taken from the same picture.

        It may seem like this picture does not have much wrong with it... But it does have many scratches and tears if you loo closely. It was an over-sized picture about - 19x15" aprox. so I had to split it into more pieces than there were there originally... it took me a few hours to put them together (5 pices = 10 bucks to scan each = 50 bucks) My extensive Restoration is $100.00,which cover about 4 hrs of work, anything more than that, is $40.00 additional hrs. I was timing myself every time I worked on that picture, and would stop the timer when I wouldn't work on it. WHen it was done, the timer read 13 hrs... well, I took off about 3 hrs because there were times when I had forgotten to stop the timer. So 10 hrs out of which 4 were covered by 100 bucks and 6 - 40/hr = 240.00
        Subtotal - 340.00 plus 50.00 for scanning, and a pic 8x10 and a CD I would include in the price. I was willing to accept a few installments of payment.

        A lot of people that ask us to do this kind of work, underestimate our labor. They think we have a machine in which we put their original, then press a botton, and the resolt comes out... They always ask WOW SO EXPENSIVE! My friend once came ehre and saw me fixing a picture mm by mm, inch by inch... she was like OH MY, YOU DO IT LIKE THAT? DAMN, it looks paiful!

        HA! :-)
        Attached Files
        Last edited by Balky; 12-11-2002, 10:56 PM.


        • #5
          Good job, I see where you got the hair.

          In a low quality small jpg image it is hard to see all the cracks and damage to the picture. I still think that I could have it completed in about 5 hours. But, I base this on what I can see...

          Your right, people do sometime bark at the prices that we charge, but if they want the job done right...

          I have had several customers watch me work on there image and they are amazed that I actually do all the work! Like you said, they think that you have a magic amchine that just churns these things out, well.... I tell my customers that Photoshop is a powerfull TOOL that I work my magic with, it doesn't do the work for you, not in this version anyway!

          I just finished restoring 9 images for a customer, a couple that were a desaster, almost beyond repair, but the finished restoration is MUCH better than the original. Several of them were torn and a few had missing parts. I spent a total of 15 hours on all of them, charged her for 11 hours (discount for image use on my website) and she couldn't be happier.

          The restoration that you did looks pretty good. I would LOVE to see a high res copy of it.



          • #6
            I have a question.
            I've never considered charging for scanning. What is the reasoning behind that? Why do you quote that seperately?


            • #7
              Nice job on the finished image, Balky!

              I charge by the job for each image, but my estimate is based on a $50/hr. rate and the estimate is given just by looking at the image and making an educated guess as to how long it will take me to complete the job. I also charge an additional fee for original images larger than 8x10, which would add $25 to the cost of this one.

              Looking at your image, I'd guess that it would take me about 5 hours to finish, which would mean that I'd quote the job at $275.

              I'd give the client a 3-4 week turnaround.


              • #8

                Thanks for the compliment, Jak! and everyone who has posted a reply so far.

                Vikki, that was a good question. Before I decided to do that, I have been to many business related websites where I saw that people charge to scan a photo. Those prices varry. Even Doug charges 15 dollars for scanning...

                I will explain why: Sometimes a picture needs to be scanned more than once to transfer alll of the detail, e.g. I was scanning a pic, the woman was on stage in a dress with sparkles... I Had to scan that pic 3 times before I could get those sparkle... each time I had to play with sliders before scanning to make the brightness and curves right... That work takes time too unfortunately :-(

                I always adjust the image (tonal and color) before I scaan and then after scan in Photoshop already.

                I hope I was able to answer your question clearly. If you still have questions, please do ask :-)


                • #9
                  Balky: I forgot to mention that I would estimate from 5 to 10 hours (depending on what kind of day we are having ...:-))

                  Vicky: We charge seperately for scanning for these reasons;
                  -It does take time, expense, expertise and equipment - if we were to outsource the scanning we would have to pay for it.
                  -The customer understands where the total bill comes from by breaking it into pieces.
                  -It leaves open the idea of scanning and printing without art work, if not for this image possibly for images that the customer has at home, which can mean more business.

                  Added note on quoting objects in the photo seperately:
                  -By breaking the quote it seperate sections / steps we are more consistant in our quoting, it is less a factor of our mood at the moment and forces us to be aware of the details. ALso, when used to quote by guesstimate, we found that smaller originals used to be quoted a lower price by accident because we did not notice some of the tiny problems, so quoting based on the objects in the photo fixed that problem.



                  • #10
                    Good points about the scanning!


                    • #11
                      My Opinion

                      Pavel, nice job on patching it and cleaning the flaws etc. Just a few things I noticed. There is a black shadow on the girl's head on the's much too dark compared to the rest of the pic. Which brings me to the second point--the whole picture needs curves adjustment along with some manual dodge and burn to bring out more contrast as it's a bit flat overall (because it started off that way, being faded from age). There should be more variety in darkness of shadows. Just one example...shadows should be darker on the underrail of the bench and on their feet. Some faces and areas were faded more than others so need individual treatment with hand tools.

                      As for time, the heart of the picture (people/faces) is in pretty good shape, so I don't think this job would be exceptionally difficult (except for adding the top of a head, which isn't so bad because head tops are easy to find...facial features would be another story). I'd guess about 4 - 5 hours, but can't say without seeing the actual picture. The scanning in pieces is not hard though it may take an extra 15 minutes or so, depending of course on the speed of your scanner. I can see adding ten bucks to the job cost, maybe, though I probably wouldn't bother...I always include scans in the cost.

                      As for pricing, well... Roger, I think the price you quoted is, frankly, exorbitant! This picture is one I would do for $150. But I work out of my home and also have another source of income, so I don't need to charge that much to make it worth my time. Actually, I love it, so I'd probably do this just for the fun of it, as a hobby, but don't let that get out...shhhh!

                      I'm probably on the low end, pricewise, while Roger is on the high end. In my opinion, a charge of $200 - $250 would be still "reasonable" for this picture, which comes to about $40 - $50 per hour. That is, if the results were top notch...that is, nearly perfect. Nowadays it seems that just about anyone with a copy of Photoshop thinks they can go into the restoration/retouching business, and from what I've seen on the web, not everyone is good enough to be charging much for what they turn out. So I thinks folks who want to try this as a business should wait till they are sure their work is top notch before getting too pricey.

                      Last edited by ; 12-13-2002, 01:45 AM.


                      • #12
                        Phyllis: You are right, our prices are on the high end, we have a studio overhead ($3000 a month for just rent and phone book ads) - the customers that come to us know that our prices are higher than someone working from their home, but they feel more secure, so it is worth it to them. It is also a reflection of what we have to charge to work on their job, because if we could be work on something else that made better money, why would we be doing their job ... yes, we do love doing this for people, but thier is only so much time in a day and we do have to make a living and pay the bills ...



                        • #13
                          Originally posted by roger_ele
                          Phyllis: You are right, our prices are on the high end, we have a studio overhead ($3000 a month for just rent and phone book ads) - the customers that come to us know that our prices are higher than someone working from their home, but they feel more secure, so it is worth it to them.
                          And it's also more convenient for them to drop by your studio, not to mention that they know it exists from seeing it as they pass by, or finding it in their local yellow pages. It's much harder to find someone working at home who is ALSO LOCAL who can do the kind of work they want, so of course they would prefer to go to a "studio." I do get mail order requests from my web site, and folks actually do send their precious photos through the mail to a perfect stranger with only a home address...I for one would never do that! So I can certainly see why they would feel better walking into a local business operation.

                          And I can understand why you must charge so much, since you do have that high overhead. But then this is (probably) your full time job and how you make your living. Bottom line is if folks are happy with the results and don't mind paying it, you can charge it and you both end up happy.



                          • #14
                            I would like to add that there has been times that we have actually charged the customer less than we quoted them, if we feel that we miss-quoted from quoting it on the safe side. We allways quote on the high end, we have been burned to many times by jobs that took much longer than we estimated. As you know, the devil is in the details.


                            • #15
                              The steps involved

                              Balky, in reply to your mail, here's what I would do to the picture, which is really good otherwise, in my opinion. I am attaching a sample to show you what I mean.

                              1. The whole picture appeared to slant to the right...the mother looked like she was leaning and would fall off the bench, and the windows were really crooked...too much to be explained away by the angle of the photographer I think. It looks a little less crooked when rotated ccw 3 degrees.

                              2. The two arrows at top and bottom point to a vertical line where the rectangular selection was as I did a levels adjustment to the right side. The line goes right down through the second girl's face...very faint and hard to see at top of picture, but the difference in darknes is obvious at the bottom of the picture. This means the bottom is too light, thus my comment on the feet and shadows under the bench being too light. Since the two halves match at the top of the pic but not at the bottom, that means a levels adjustment will fix the bottom without damaging the top, which came out good for the most part. In doing the levels adjustment, I moved the middle and left sliders to the right a bit, till the bottom looked darker but not enough to darken the top. Testing it in a selection like this (half and half down the middle) lets you see right away when you have it right, then you can use those same numbers on the entire picture safely.

                              Down in the corner is a small pic of the hair, before and after. On the left I lightened and re-colored with brown just the part of the dark area above the ear to what it should be, then on the right did a levels adjustment on the whole rectangle since her head was too light/flat compared to the other heads. Of course that adjustment would have to be done with a selection on a new layer then brushed away at the edges with soft eraser to blend it into whole picture.

                              Hope you found some of this helpful. Have fun!

                              Attached Files


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                                A friend of mine brought this picture for co-worker... I want to know how much you would charge.


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