How much should I expect to be paid for this job?

Started Jun 9, 2013 | Questions thread
ranalli Senior Member • Posts: 1,016
Re: Good points but you missed biggest clue

Teila Day wrote:

ranalli wrote:

Teila Day wrote:

Jeff Seltzer wrote:

Teila Day wrote:

It just does not take 2 days to shoot this type of shoot, unless the requirement is to shoot 20 models as if you were shooting them for their own web site, etc. If that's the case, the OP should be asking for more than 3500 measly dollars. That's how much we'd get for one gal back around 2006 or so. Either the people are paying big bucks or I'd skip it altogether. Not worth the problems that usually arise when working with such non punctual, forgetful, don't know which way is up types of people who typically have as much business sense as an animal cracker.

For hum drum typical sex industry studio work. He should be able to shoot 20 gals before lunch!

It's just that easy unless there's some special circumstances / requirements not mentioned by the OP.

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Teila K. Day

There are many photographers much more successful than Penguin that take longer than 5 minutes per subject. Sorry. Not every shoot is for a 2nd grade yearbook.

I have no idea how successful Penguin is; his level of success is irrelevant to my comment. What is relevant to my comment, is the fact that it's based on years of experience shooting for individual (and corporate) web sites back when nude glamour content was a money train. Shooting such today is almost guaranteed to be a dog... waste of time especially since today, it is common that such services shoot their own content.

I will reiterate. For typical escorts service web site photographs, a photographer can easily shoot 20 models and be finished by lunch. Any escort service paying for more time than that is either foolish, or doesn't have a grasp on their target demographic who generally couldn't care less about the photography as long as they can be reasonably assured what their date is going to look like before giving their credit card number.

Shooting segments for a college gal's web site is one thing. Shooting the standard sex industry content for the web simply does not take long at all, and frankly taking two days to shoot such is akin to taking an hour to shoot a real estate agent's head shot... you can take 5 hours to do it if you like, getting lighting ratios perfect, pay $300 for a makeup artist and hair... but for what the photograph is going to be used for (agent's business card), it doesn't pass the common sense test.

In the OP's case, unless the client is wanting fine art nudes, or fashion set ups- 2 days is a waste of time considering what the OP is likely to get paid. I wouldn't shoot 2 days of comprehensive studio and or location work x 20 models, for $3,500. Would you?

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Teila K. Day

It depends on what the client ultimately wants. Some clients are satisfied with shots that look like they were done for a year book or at Olan Mills, other clients may want a fully re-touched shot requiring a fair amount of post-processing. Maybe the client doesn't want every girl under the same exact lighting.

The point here is knowing the client, and even more important is knowing about the industry.

The fact is, everyone here is just speculating the right way to do something when they don't even know the requirements.

True, and that is why we discuss what is most LIKELY to be the case predicated on sex industry standards. The fact that the OP is mentioning payment is an indicator, because usually he would've been told what they would pay up front, and take it or leave it basically, with little room to negotiate unless he offered to bring something very unique to the table to sweeten the deal and increase his income.

I will say this though, shooting 20 people of any type other than for awful looking yearbook or little-league pictures is pretty're not giving the craft the attention it deserves and that becomes apparent to your client.

The sanitized year book photo look isn't unprofessional, it's just a UTILITY photograph that allows people to easily view a persons facial featured many years down the road. I do not want a photographer's vision screwing up my year book photographs because his "vision" isn't welcome. I just want a basic well lit portrait. There's a time and place for everything and a yearbook photograph is more of function than art, and is no less professional than a more comprehensive photograph.

Photographing the sex industry is one of utility and enticement, and mostly never about your artistic vision which seldom will increase revenue. Part of being a professional is knowing when do pour your heart and soul into something (one of the escort's personal web site and she's paying you $8,500 to populate the first few galleries within the next 72 hours), and when to produce a simple well lit shot (post office photo for passport). The only thing we have to go on here is probability, and Industry Standard. Using those two things as a test- The OP is wasting his time unless he's going to get paid a lot more than $3,500.

.... You bring good points, however you overlooked one of the largest and arguably important clues when arguing a point without having all the information. We only have to go on what is most PROBABLE, just like when a judge listens to two attorneys litigating a CIVIL case. Which is most LIKELY to have happened, when we use our common sense and put the information that we DO have to the test of reason?

Let's review some facts, several of which we consider fact on the basis of inductive reasoning (e.g. the same premise we use when we say "it's fact that the sun will rise tomorrow", when in fact we do not know whether it will rise or not).

1. The OP states he is doing a shoot for a web site that promotes escorts/sex industry (basically).

2. Web sites that promote the sex industry in virtually every form imaginable, generally do not need elaborate, and comprehensive photography to attract their market, nor are they willing to pay for it.

3. Most of the photographs found in the sex industry see very little high quality post work.

4. The level of post work beyond a cursory amount, is usually not worth the time because it will not affect the bottom line of the business, nor bring in more subscribers and or clients. This does not apply to personal web sites. It applies hard to business and large corporate sites.

The gig sounds like a "pass" based on the fact alone that either the business doesn't know what they're doing, or the photographer isn't giving us correct information. The job is just too sketchy and non-business like, it what it sounds like to me from what I've heard so far.

Budget and what the business was willing to pay should've been one of the first things on the table.

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Teila K. Day

I agree with most of what you say especially the "most likely" scenario aspect of it.  However, there is the odd gig that falls outside of that needing a true artistic vision, generous post-work etc.

Bottom line is the facts are somewhat unknown and they must be known before determining a fee or judgement on the job.

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