Photographing High School Senior Portraits
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Pricing for portrait shoots


Photographing High School Senior Portraits

with Derrick Story

Video: Pricing for portrait shoots

Let's talk a minute about the p word. So, that investment should make you work a certain amount of money per hour.
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  1. 3m 10s
    1. Welcome
      1m 12s
    2. Understanding the art and business of portraiture
      1m 58s
  2. 14m 15s
    1. Understanding the general guidelines for senior portraits
      1m 44s
    2. Exploring the light in various shoot locations
      3m 24s
    3. Understanding the business of senior portraits
      3m 36s
    4. Pricing for portrait shoots
      2m 55s
    5. Setting up a portable studio
      2m 36s
  3. 28m 34s
    1. Understanding the minimum space requirements for a studio shoot
      2m 25s
    2. Working with portable stands and backdrops
      2m 44s
    3. Posing and photographing female subjects
      7m 21s
    4. Discussing the interior shoot expectations with a student
      4m 35s
    5. Posing and photographing a male subject
      8m 36s
    6. Working with continuous lights vs. strobes
      2m 53s
  4. 31m 18s
    1. Reviewing the gear for the outdoor portrait shoot
      5m 35s
    2. Reviewing additional accessories for the outdoor portrait shoot
      3m 52s
    3. Working with family members during a portrait shoot
      5m 49s
    4. Discussing the expectations for the yearbook portrait
      4m 55s
    5. Shooting a portrait, starting with natural light
      7m 5s
    6. Taking advantage of the golden hour for outdoor portraits
      4m 2s
  5. 39m 36s
    1. Sorting through the portrait shoot session
      7m 17s
    2. Picking the set to share with the client
      6m 54s
    3. Sharing the image set with the client
      5m 42s
    4. Working with a client in person to review images
      9m 26s
    5. Touching up and post work on the client favorites
      5m 6s
    6. Reviewing the final selects picked by the photographer
      5m 11s

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Watch the Online Video Course Photographing High School Senior Portraits
1h 56m Intermediate Jun 02, 2014

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

The senior portrait is a traditional rite of passage for a high school student. But senior portraits aren't what they used to be: staid, format portraits shot in front of a mottled gray background. These days, an effective senior portrait conveys the personality of its subject, and is often shot on-location or outdoors.

In this course, photographer and educator Derrick Story details the art and the process of modern senior portraiture, from working with the subject and his or her parents to plan a shot list, to shooting indoors and out, to delivering the final shots. Along the way, he examines gear and workflow considerations, including lighting, sharing proofs, and post-processing.

And because senior portraiture is a potentially lucrative business, the course concludes with a discussion of various business angles, including developing a pricing strategy, connecting with local high schools, marketing through social media outlets, and more.

Derrick Story

Pricing for portrait shoots

Let's talk a minute about the p word. Yeah, pricing. Now, you may not be charging for your work right now. But who knows? You get a couple good shoots. And the next thing you know that you may think about, this is not a bad way to go for a little freelance business. Helps you buy your equipment, a little extra spending money. Now a lot of photographers have a hard time with pricing, and I think they tend to undervalue their work.

So, I have a little formula, I want you to think about; when it comes time for you to price a simple job like this, a portrait shoot. First off, think about your investment, your investment in yourself through training, workshops, going to college, things like that. You've had to learn your craft. You have spent time doing that. You also have an investment in equipment, the camera, the lenses, the lighting. All of those things costs you money. You spent money, so you have made an investment in your ability to do this photo shoot.

So, that investment should make you work a certain amount of money per hour. And, again, a lot of photographers I feel like sort of undervalue how much they're worth per hour. So, I'm going to put a number out there. I'm going to say that your worth right now, I don't even know you, but I know that you're worth $50 or $60 an hour. Just, off the top of my head, you starting out doing portraits. Now, think about how much time are you going to spend on this project.

It's not just the time that you're out there taking pictures, yeah, that's probably an hour. But you're going to spend some time beforehand, getting the paperwork together. Meeting with the client. Talking about the shoot. There's an another hour. And then I guarantee, you're going to spend at least an hour after the shoot, going through the photos and getting the ones, that you like looking as good as possible. And I will say that probably an hour is conservative. But just for the hack of it, let's say an hour before, an hour during and an hour after.

Let's say three hours for this senior portrait shoot. And if you come up with a number that you're worth, let's say, $60 an hour then you should be able to look that person in the eye and say, this is $180 to do the shoot and it's a good value. You're going to get your money's worth, and I'm pretty sure you're going to be happy with the photos. But the trick to pricing is that you have to believe it in order for it to work. And the way to believe it is really look at the investment that you've made in this project.

If you do that, then I think you'll be very confident when you talk numbers with a potential client.

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