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Old August 25th, 2008, 05:35 PM   #1
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Another Rate Question.....

So I've recently been asked to shoot some footage around town (famous places, "areas of interest"). I haven't received a shot list yet. There's no actors or script, its pretty much just footage.

Previously I have only sold stock footage or shot footage for my own projects so I'm a little clueless as to what to charge.

I'll just be using a Canon XH-A1 and tripod, nothing too fancy, I don't have to rent anything.

How would you charge?
Hourly?
By location Quantity?
One flat fee for the whole project?


I don't want to overcharge, this is my first "for hire" gig and I don't really have anything to back-up my reputation. But, of course I don't want to undercharge too much.

Thanks for any help.
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Old August 26th, 2008, 10:27 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Luke Tingle View Post
So I've recently been asked to shoot some footage around town (famous places, "areas of interest"). I haven't received a shot list yet. There's no actors or script, its pretty much just footage.

Previously I have only sold stock footage or shot footage for my own projects so I'm a little clueless as to what to charge.

I'll just be using a Canon XH-A1 and tripod, nothing too fancy, I don't have to rent anything.

How would you charge?
Hourly?
By location Quantity?
One flat fee for the whole project?


I don't want to overcharge, this is my first "for hire" gig and I don't really have anything to back-up my reputation. But, of course I don't want to undercharge too much.

Thanks for any help.
Do you have any more specific direction from the client? Ie, I want a panning shot left to right of building X, I want a slow zoom in from this location to building Y, etc? If so the person buying the footage may have specific uses and may be a bit more professional / exacting in their requirements for your footage.... which means you need to provide great footage (and possibley charge more?).

Don't forget to check and see if you need a film permit (highly unlikely given that it will just be you and a tripod, but you never know). And bill the film permit back to the client or adjust your prices accordingly.
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Old August 26th, 2008, 09:40 PM   #3
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Great Info, thanks.

I'm supposed to get specific details about the shots they need later on in the week. I'll be sure to tailor my rate to the details of there needs.

Any idea of a standard rate for barebones production shooting ( shooting video solo ) in a major city?

How much would you charge for shooting say..
-4 locations (parks, public buildings etc.), all with 10 miles of each other
-15 mins of tape per location (various shots, pans etc.)
-no permits or other charges

I'm thinking for something like this, $750 would be fair. I could shoot and prep the media in a day.

Sound reasonable?
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Old August 26th, 2008, 11:05 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Luke Tingle View Post
Any idea of a standard rate for barebones production shooting ( shooting video solo ) in a major city?
How much would you charge for shooting say..
-4 locations (parks, public buildings etc.), all with 10 miles of each other
-15 mins of tape per location (various shots, pans etc.)
-no permits or other charges
I'm thinking for something like this, $750 would be fair. I could shoot and prep the media in a day.
Sound reasonable?
In my market, that would be a reasonable 1/2 to full day rate for a single shooter with no audio concerns (I assume they don't need quality ambient audio). Atlanta is a much bigger metro area than Boise, so cost of living and associated services may be more expensive (but I honestly have no idea).
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Old August 27th, 2008, 07:46 AM   #5
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Keep in mind as well you should be scouting the locations in advance to find out when the sun falls best on the location, if all of a sudden there is street construction that you didn't know about that will "ruin" the shot from a stock footage perspective and "little" things like that.

As well, as a result of scouting locations, you may realize you can't shoot them all in a day because at 7:45am until 8am EACH site is properly lit, so now you have 4 days that you need to shoot instead of packing it all into one. Oh, and then there is the weather. I'd expect bright beautiful blue skies with ideal lighting if I was paying for stock footage. If it's cloudy or raining, come back another day.

That's why GOOD stock footage commands the price it does: it is shot at the very best time to show off the location and may have involved days or months of returning to a location to get the ideal shots. If this is just a "news-style" shoot, please disregard but in my ten years as a pro I've had clients try and send me out to shoot something new to save money over just paying my stock footage fee to get it "perfect".

Good luck, good weather and good shooting to you!
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Old August 27th, 2008, 03:36 PM   #6
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Excellent, thanks for the info. I didn't really think about any scouting involved.
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Old August 27th, 2008, 04:49 PM   #7
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Also, is it legally necessary to state the ownership of the media in writing? Or do all "work for hire" scenerios entitle the client to full ownership unless stated otherwise?

Also, in a "work for hire" scenerio, are the clients responsible for any copyright infringement if say they want a shot of some public property?

Sorry for all the questions, thanks for the help. If it wasn't for this site, I'd be SOL. Ha
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Old August 27th, 2008, 05:48 PM   #8
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Not a lawyer but my GUT tells me you can SHOOT landmarks and trademarks till the cows come home. How they choose to USE it would be at issue and therefore up to them to get copyright and trademark clearances.

In a shoot for hire, I normally just turn over my footage and accept payment. If I'm PRODUCING the piece, the "ownership" is a little more convoluted. One again, my world, my opinion.
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Old August 27th, 2008, 06:28 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Luke Tingle View Post
Also, is it legally necessary to state the ownership of the media in writing? Or do all "work for hire" scenerios entitle the client to full ownership unless stated otherwise?

Also, in a "work for hire" scenerio, are the clients responsible for any copyright infringement if say they want a shot of some public property?

Sorry for all the questions, thanks for the help. If it wasn't for this site, I'd be SOL. Ha
Be careful - "work for hire" has a very explicit definition in the copyright law as does "employee" in the labour laws and the fact that you've been contracted to shoot some footage and are being paid for it does not in itself make you an employee nor does it make the video to be a work for hire. In the US vernacular, video shot in the course of W-2 employment would be a work for hire but video shot in the course of 1099 'employment' very likely would not be unless it is stated otherwise in writing. If your client says "We'll pay you $100 for 5 minutes of footage of the Niagara Falls Casino" that in itself does not make it a work for hire or absolve you of legal responsibility/liability for personal and property releases. OTOH, if the client sends someone from their office who tells you "We'll pay you $100 if you set up the camera here, use this focal length on the lens, underexpose by 1 stop, and roll tape while we set off skyrockets on the lawn, then give us the tape when we're done" then you're very likely in a 'work for hire' situation and they're the ones who's a***s are on the line.
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Old August 28th, 2008, 03:28 PM   #10
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Do you need permission to publish pictures of buildings? - Dear Rich: Nolo?s Patent, Copyright & Trademark Blog
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Old August 28th, 2008, 03:51 PM   #11
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Be careful - "work for hire" has a very explicit definition in the copyright law as does "employee" in the labour laws and the fact that you've been contracted to shoot some footage and are being paid for it does not in itself make you an employee nor does it make the video to be a work for hire. In the US vernacular, video shot in the course of W-2 employment would be a work for hire but video shot in the course of 1099 'employment' very likely would not be unless it is stated otherwise in writing. If your client says "We'll pay you $100 for 5 minutes of footage of the Niagara Falls Casino" that in itself does not make it a work for hire or absolve you of legal responsibility/liability for personal and property releases. OTOH, if the client sends someone from their office who tells you "We'll pay you $100 if you set up the camera here, use this focal length on the lens, underexpose by 1 stop, and roll tape while we set off skyrockets on the lawn, then give us the tape when we're done" then you're very likely in a 'work for hire' situation and they're the ones who's a***s are on the line.
I think I'm just going to give them an invoice and assume they own complete rights to the footage (I don't need anyways).

Thanks for the link Peter. If I were to shoot visible private property, I'm sure they (the client) wouldn't use it for competitive reasons as it wouldn't apply to them. This should be more of a documentary of the city, not an ad.
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