welcome to my journal
his is my place to share my stories - about motherhood, marriage, my work as a photographer, business and the trials of entrepreneurship ... and everything else I want to chat about.
I'm so glad that you're here!
Keep on swimming!
August 14, 2012
Anyone who has ever Googled “Colorado Springs Family Photographer” has no doubt come across the THOUSANDS of photographers here in the Springs. This is a very saturated climate for photographers – every talent level, price range and style you can think of. There is literally a photographer for everyone here in town – and I think that’s a GREAT thing because I think everyone should have a trusted photographer they can go to (not to mention, supporting a local business in this economy!). I’ve worked very hard at making my style of photography unique and beautiful, with tasteful edits and quality images. I really feel that I’ve found my niche with my shooting and editing styles, and people who have come to me know what to expect in terms of quality and experience. I think that this is the most important part of my growth as an artist – consistency in experience, style and quality!
But the business side of things is where I’ve definitely felt the growing pains of a business. Ugh.
Over the last couple of years, I have tried to find a happy pricing medium for my clients and for myself … When I first started out, I essentially gave my work away for free and made less than $2 an hour in the process – and quickly started getting burnt out and really wondered if I made a mistake going into business for myself despite the fact that I absolutely LOVE what I do. But I just kept swimming, started really looking into the business side of being a photographer by following the likes of Rachel Brenke, Wish Photography, Boudoir Divas, Julie Paisley, Sal Cincotta – the list goes on and on. Basically the people I really admire and respect for their business smarts because clearly whatever these pros are doing works for them – and more importantly, works for their clients. As a business owner, I don’t want to work a hundred hours a week for less than minimum wage – it just … isn’t worth it to me. It isn’t worth the time spent away from my family, the stress or our financial bottom line. As much as I wish I could be “more affordable” – I am still a BUSINESS and I have goals and quotas that I’ve set for myself. More importantly – I have a family whom I love and cherish and want to spend time with them!
The biggest thing that seems to be the dividing line here in the Springs is when a photographer offers “the disk” – the edited images with printing rights. I’ve gone back and forth on it the last couple of years, because on one hand I don’t want all of my hard work to get printed at less-than-awesome printing labs but on the other hand I know how awesome it is to be able to do what I want with the images. So a few months ago I decided, ok – I am not going to just give the CD of images away with sessions and will offer the disk a la carte. I wanted to give it a few months to really see how well it worked … and I’ll be honest, it hasn’t really worked. And that’s ok! Not every market is going to appreciate different business strategies, and since I’m still relatively new to the Colorado Springs market and learning what my local clients want – I think it’s ok to experiment. With my boudoir business, I give a CD of select images to my clients and I see now that THIS is what clients really want.
So I’m gonna start swimming with the tide and start offering the disk of images with sessions. That being said, with the disk being included my prices will be raising to create a happy balance once again between my time, my talent, my bottom line and your wishes.
My engagement/couples, family and senior sessions will be $350 (plus tax), and will include a CD of 50-60 images, with printing rights up to 8×12 at www.mpix.com (the ONLY lab I recommend for my clients for personal prints!).
I am going to offer 50% off session fees for military homecomings, and their pricing will now be $175 plus tax (homecomings already on the books will NOT have their pricing change!) and of course will include the disk of images.
With the holiday season rapidly approaching, I am offering a one-day HOLIDAY MINI SESSION SALE on November 4th, so be sure to take advantage of that deal because it’s too good to pass up!
My cut off for any type of session is going to be December 10th for the rest of the year. I still have a couple weekend slots left for sessions, and a handful of weekday slots left open so definitely book now so you aren’t sitting in November without having beautiful family photos for 2012!