Questions, questions, questions !!! If you are hiring a professional pet photographer to photograph your beloved & adored furry family member, there are many questions you need to ask !!! If you hire a plumber you ask questions & get referrals, if you hire a carpenter you ask questions & get referrals, if you hire a pet groomer - you ask questions, offer input and check them out. So why would you not ask questions about a Pet Photographer??
Sometimes the only question I am asked is - "How much do you charge?" Okay, I know this is a valid question. My pricing is listed on my website to avoid this question but that is my usual first contact with potential clients.
In this blog series, I am going to list questions that you should ask of Pet Photographers. But I am going to cover this question first ... How much do you charge? If you hire a carpenter, hair stylist or pet groomer ... they do not work for free, correct? Actually - no one works for free. On payday - the office worker doesn't hand back his check and say no - its free. Of course not!
When you hire a Pet Photographer you are hiring an artist. We are creative people! Most photographers put their heart and soul into the image they are creating. How do you put a price on "heart & soul"?
We have equipment (cameras, lens, memory cards, batteries, tripods, strobe lights, light modifiers, computers, storage drives, backdrops, props, animal clothing). We have business expenses - legal photography business requires business license, sole proprietorship, Corporation or LLC, as well as taxes & insurance. We have credit card fees, bank fees, website fees, domain fees, email fees to name a few. (Also, anyone accepting money for their photography services need all the above for their business to be legal !)
While we are creating and taking images of your pets there are many behind the scenes daily activities you never see. Yes we are photographers but we are also - Editors, communication specialist, bookkeepers, receptionist, customer service, tax preparers, advertising, social media posters, scheduling, location scouting, studio cleaning service, contract preparers, billing, problem solvers .... as well as being a wife, DogMom, Daughter, Caregiver and a volunteer! WHEW!
The cost of photography service has all the above factored into the equation plus years of experience and continuing education & learning. If I am searching for a Wedding Photographer - there is no way I would hire a Pet Photographer. You would want an experienced Wedding Photographer. The same is true for wanting portraits made of your beloved pet! You want to hire someone with experience in pet handling and photography.
All photographers charge different rates. Rates depend on where the photographer is at the moment in their business & experience. We all have a beginning! It depends on YOU - the client - what you want for your portrait session and final products that will determine the Professional Pet Photographer you hire to create images of your fur baby!
Over the course of this blog I am going to offer to you questions that SHOULD be asked when you are hiring a Professional Pet Photographer. Stay tuned!