Venting/Frustration - Page 2 at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Special Interest Areas > Wedding / Event Videography Techniques

Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old June 4th, 2009, 02:44 PM   #16
Still Motion
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Toronto, Canada
Posts: 1,186
Quote:
Originally Posted by Travis Cossel View Post
Price versus quality is always somewhat subjective, but as my wife is a photographer I thought I'd add my 2 cents here.

In my opinion $4500 for a photographer is not crazy. Sometimes we as videographers compare ourselves directly to photographers, and it's not a fair comparison. Sure, we spend more time editing than photographers typically do. However, photographers also have the hard cost of included prints and an album generally, and oftentimes a printed guestbook. You also have to factor in the time of the engagement session and ordering sessions. On top of that, there is typically some redesign that happens with albums.

My point is that it's always easy to look at another profession and make snap judgments, but unless you have actual experience in that field your judgment might be off. I've come to learn that although my wife typically commands higher fees, she also has much higher hard costs, spends more time with the client, and generally has to deal with more issues as people tend to be much more picky with things in photography.

I'm just sayin' ... d;-)
we do photographer too, so i feel it would be fair for us to comment. i know where travis is coming from but i would say for us it would be the complete opposite. photo can take less time, less overhead, and less issues with couples and she can make more. most photographers in a mid to higher end price range do not include albums, some include prints, but those after sales more than pay for the overhead associated with them.

i think our industry has evolved considerably in the past years and if we keep pushing the quality and raising our rates associated with that, i think we will step back one day soon and see just how far we have come.

P.

P.
Patrick Moreau is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 4th, 2009, 03:03 PM   #17
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Surrey, UK
Posts: 680
that's interesting to read thoughts from travis and patrick - i've definitely met togs who fit into each described category.


i'm slowly but surely learning the photography side of things with the 5dmk2. i may or may not get into it as i know my true passion will always be videography.... but it's exciting to think i could potentially look down both avenues, if i excelled in the field.

maybe think of doing the same thing ethan - that way you could get the best of both worlds, and pick the industry you prefer!
Richard Wakefield is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 4th, 2009, 03:11 PM   #18
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by Travis Cossel View Post
My point is that it's always easy to look at another profession and make snap judgments, but unless you have actual experience in that field your judgment might be off. I've come to learn that although my wife typically commands higher fees, she also has much higher hard costs, spends more time with the client, and generally has to deal with more issues as people tend to be much more picky with things in photography.
Travis, I have to agree 100% on that statement. My wife was a photographer and I have lotsa photographer friends also. People are much more picky with things in photography, rather than in videography.

BUT I dont want to ruin your party by adding another 'pessimistic' thought, with the flood of 'great quality and user friendly' cameras such as 5D MII, dont you think it would become another new threat for videographers?

Photographers starting to offer videography for value added services or there'll be a new wave of 'wannabe videographers' stating that they shoot 'cinematic wedding movies', just because they can shoot DOF now? Just my 2 cents, guys :D
__________________
Ian Lim :: http://www.iansalim.com
WeddingClip Videography :: http://www.weddingclip.net :: http://facebook.weddingclip.net
Ian Lim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 4th, 2009, 03:23 PM   #19
Major Player
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
Posts: 656
Travis:

To clarify, IMO price and quality are not really related in the photography and video business if you throw out some of those performing on the high and low extremes. Sometimes you get an excellent product for a low cost and sometimes vice/versa.

I have shot photography only for a few weddings and did both the video and photography a few times.

Granted, Im not an expert wedding photographer, but my photography hard costs were not very high. I deliver a press printed coffee table book and a small/compact highlights album from these guys Photobooks with custom laminated covers by DigiLabs and the costs and book editing time spent are low for the great looking product you get.

I also never spent any more time with photo clients than with video, and any engagement session is totally separate just like video.

IMO photography is priced correctly and video is just plain priced too low because of the market. Anyway, I don't mean to argue, just saying where Im coming from.
__________________
Panasonic HMC150/Canon A1/JVC HD1/Sony Vegas 8.0c
Jeff Kellam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 4th, 2009, 03:41 PM   #20
Major Player
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Columbia,SC
Posts: 806
Ethan,
I just had a bride ask for a discount on my $800 documentary package. Now, did I get mad? No, I just realized that she's not my client. There's no problem with that. You have to match your market. I have found that the upper middle clients that we serve with photo/video are extremely gracious and very cool people. When we book photo/video with the $800 package, I have 4 hrs editing wrapped in it. (just finished one I started at noon) and we have $2500-$3k in photography. Dont' sweat people that don't wanna buy what you're selling, just go find the ones that do.
Bill
__________________
Cinema Couture
www.cinemacouture.com
Bill Grant is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 4th, 2009, 04:29 PM   #21
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Miami, FL
Posts: 2,933
Patrick -
I think you misunderstood me. I wasn't trying to imply that photography was less profitable than videography. Certainly not! I'd be the first one to say otherwise.

I'm simply wanted to point out that you can't just look at a photographer's fee and assume it's all profit, because it's generally not. I've seen brides make comments on The Knot about how $2k for a video is crazy, and it's because they are ignorant to the trade. I just would hate to see the same attitude going on here towards other professionals in the wedding industry.


Ian -
The '5D revolution' is still unraveling, but I'm not concerned really. As I just stated in my response to Patrick, photography by itself still generally has a higher profit margin than videography .. so financially it just doesn't really make sense for a photographer to try and incorporate video at this time .. especially since most of them would be learning from scratch. If anything, I think the 5D has aided videographers more than photographers.


I also agree with Patrick that video has come quite a ways in just the past 5 years. I know 5 years ago it was totally unheard of to charge $3-4k for a video in my market. But I'm doing that now. The industry as a whole is gaining more popularity and legitimacy.

I think partly this is due to the surge of quality and content improvements that many of us are bringing to the industry ... but I also think it has a lot to do with how the average person is responding to technology these days. Text and pictures are quickly becoming old school. Dynamic content is gaining popularity over static content. I think in another 5-10 years wedding video will have a much stronger position in the bride's budget.
__________________
Black Label Films
www.blacklabelweddingfilms.com
Travis Cossel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 4th, 2009, 05:55 PM   #22
Major Player
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: O.C., CA United States
Posts: 337
Photo+Video=Good Times :D

We are a photo/video studio also.. so I can relate on this in many different ways.. In fact we jumped into photography even after having great success in our videography so that we could capture that market that says "photos first" and blow their budget with the photographer before they ever get to us.

in the end though the only thing that matters is your work and your attitude. Your work has to show up being worthy to demand a good price, and your attitude needs to affirm your work; let's look at Mike Colon for a sec.. definitely not the best in the world, although his attitude affirms his price. At 25K the bride gets excellent service, charisma and a nice album or two.. generally he includes a La Vie album, which will run him about $1000 each (I know because we also use La Vie in our studio).

For us our prices are in the 3-6 range and don't differentiate video pricing from photo pricing.. they are the same.. however no prints or albums come with our photography so all that is extra for the bride.. therefore I would say we generally earn the same, but more work and time is needed (IMO) on the video side of things.

Since we have incorporated Photo+Video our bookings more than have doubled.. photo+video packages are the most popular with a few single medium packages booked (usually video only). Its been a crazy process in which I feel our videos had to suffer a bit more than I had intended.. considering I needed to find competent help.. and unlike patrick I don't have Konrad and Borat.

By the way I need to thank Patrick for helping us make the decision to include photography.. I'm sure had we not had that conversation a few years ago we would be kicking ourselves right about now (at least from a financial standpoint).
__________________
-M
www.visualmasterpiece.com
Michael Padilla is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 4th, 2009, 07:23 PM   #23
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Toowoomba, Australia
Posts: 370
Ethan - I feel your pain. The state of the wedding videography industry, while still in the best condition it's been for years, is still a constant source of frustration for me.

Historically our industry has produced poor-quality, low-budget wedding videos. As a result, this has educated the general public, and brides in particular, that a wedding video is something not to be valued. Why expect brides to pay more for something they do not value in the first place? We need to infuse our work with value, and increase our prices, if we are to get the industry to the place we'd all like to see it go.

I feel the answer for our industry is a combination of lower volume/higher price - plus continually improving the quality of work as we raise our prices. Over time this approach will change the perception that brides and the general public have towards our industry.

If your business is higher volume, I would suggest implementing some sort of 3 year plan to lower your volume and raise your prices in a sustainable way than ensures you stay in business. Doubling your prices, if you are solely dependent on video as your main income, is a big risk. Raising your prices over time, along with natural improvements to the quality of your work, could be a viable strategy.

I'm also part of a photo+video studio and I would say it's not about photography vs videography. I feel we should be educating brides that getting both photo+video tells the full story of their wedding day. The photo vs video mindset only holds us back, especially the animosity between photographers and videographers. Photographers can be our best friends (i.e. highest referrers) or worst enemies depending on how we treat them.

We aren't only competing against photographers for a piece of a bride's budget, we are competing with every other wedding vendor. We need to be as high on their 'shopping list' as possible and establishing positive relationships with photographers would be one way to achieve that.

When it comes to pricing it can be very frustrating. Katie and I can book a $5,500 photography package that is 1/4 of the work of an equivalently priced video package. Even with the hard costs of albums, prints etc ... we still come out way ahead. At the moment I'm charging $5,500 for a very short-form wedding film. In Australia, that is unheard of, and at the moment I'm not getting any takers. But, I can't bring myself to either lower my prices or compromise on quality and style. Even at $5,500 it's a bargain for the amount of time it takes and the quality of the end product. Why should I put myself through the blood, sweat and tears of producing a quality wedding film when I can do photography with Katie at a wedding, have a bunch of fun and generate a more substantial profit.

Hope that helps,

Matthew.
__________________
---------------------------------------------------------
www.shadowplay.com.au --- www.shadowplay.com.au/blog
Matthew Ebenezer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 4th, 2009, 08:13 PM   #24
Major Player
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 622
Hi Matthew,

Greetings from Sydney! :)

I agree completely about how photography earn more than videography.

Because eventhough they have all the hard cost and stuff, the amount of time to edit photos are very little compared to video.. not to mention rendering time.

But I guess we could whine and whine forever about how photographers are much luckier than we are and it will do us no good. I agree with what matthew said that the only way to get through this thing is to educate the bride by feeding them great stuff.. and I mean great stuff.

Matthew may I ask whether you're charging AU$5.5 k and give the B&G short form only?

Because if you do, I think you're pushing it a bit too hard. They like to see that they are getting a lot with what they are paying. Ever since I introduced long edit and short form edit, my bookings has doubled. I don't charge AU$5.5 k but my price is not that cheap either..

but then again, you may have been doing this as well. just curious.

my 2 millions.

Santo
__________________
If a picture is worth a thousand words, what about motion picture?
website: www.papercranes.com.au | blog: www.weddingvideosydney.net
Susanto Widjaja is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 4th, 2009, 08:30 PM   #25
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Toowoomba, Australia
Posts: 370
Hey Santo! Greetings from Queensland! I'll shoot you an e-mail or PM to continue this discussion on Aussie pricing. That way Ethan's thread won't get off track.

Cheers,

Matthew.
__________________
---------------------------------------------------------
www.shadowplay.com.au --- www.shadowplay.com.au/blog
Matthew Ebenezer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 4th, 2009, 10:07 PM   #26
Major Player
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 622
No worriez matt,

One more thing guys, if we keep on feeding our kids with play station 3, wii, nintendo ds.

do you think the kids on the neighbourhood who plays with them would still care about their old sega or super nintendo ?

:P

Santo
__________________
If a picture is worth a thousand words, what about motion picture?
website: www.papercranes.com.au | blog: www.weddingvideosydney.net
Susanto Widjaja is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 5th, 2009, 12:51 AM   #27
Trustee
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Vancouver Island, Canada
Posts: 1,200
Ethan,

I feel your pain... It will change, but it will be slow. There has been a negative stigma surrounding wedding video versus an "aura of mystique" surrounding wedding photography. As more clients become educated on good vs bad wedding films, they will realize the value. There are alot of 'hacks with a handycam' out there. I've seen some demos that I would be embarrassed to give away for free, let alone charge money for.

I recently embraced wedding videography as a branch of my business after years of avoiding it like the plague. It is because of the work that I have have seen by you and other leaders on here that inspired me to "embrace" weddings (that combined with the crash of my core business - real estate).

I have over $30,000 worth of video gear. You know how much photo gear I could buy for that. I think some North American markets would support full time hi-end wedding work - not mine. It is just a segment of what I do. Seriously I would starve.

Hang in there - but don't drop your prices. You're way to good for that.
__________________
C100, 5DMk2, FCPX
Ken Diewert is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 5th, 2009, 08:23 AM   #28
Trustee
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Houma, La.
Posts: 1,400
Images: 5
Thanks for the responses guys, some interesting discussion going on here. Allow me to make a few points and clarify a couple positions.

1) My main frustration with the situation I pointed out in my original post was the gap in perceived value between the two mediums for comparable quality provided in the end product. I was never complaining about how much photographers make, rather how little we make in comparison on an hourly basis. If a photographer can pull down thousands per gig then more power to em, I just want to be able to do the same for quality work.

2) Part of our trouble is that we're well established in the middle class market due to our pricing up to this point in time. Our current middle class brides are telling all their middle class friends about us, but how do we get our name circulating in the higher rung who can afford to pay for where we're trying to go with our pricing?

3) Every time I consider adding photo to our list of services I immediately think about all the extra stuff they have to deal with on the wedding day. Through observation it seems to me that life is tougher for them in the dealing with people department. I've seen several treated poorly and put up with attitudes that would have me handing people their money back and walking away from the job. For whatever reason it just seems like people are harder on photographers than videographers. Anyone else notice this?

4) I've never for one second considered dropping my prices to lure a bride. My price is my price, take it or leave it. You don't walk into a store and ask them to drop their price cause you spent too much at another store. It's absurd and insulting.
Speaking of which, have you seen this? http://www.youtube.com/v/R2a8TRSgzZY

5) For me I think the answer is to jack the prices up to match the quality and work on pulling in other types of video projects. If I can sell weddings for what they're worth then great, I'll do them, if not then oh well, I'll move on to other things. Of course if I can no longer pay my bills with this new strategy then I may reconsider.
__________________

-Ethan Cooper
Ethan Cooper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 5th, 2009, 09:25 PM   #29
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Northwestern/Central, PA
Posts: 62
Love the Youtube video from#4. It is soooo true.
Nicholas Valentine is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 6th, 2009, 02:45 PM   #30
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 689
Hi Ethan,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Cooper View Post
4) I've never for one second considered dropping my prices to lure a bride. My price is my price, take it or leave it. You don't walk into a store and ask them to drop their price cause you spent too much at another store. It's absurd and insulting.
Speaking of which, have you seen this? http://www.youtube.com/v/R2a8TRSgzZY
That is a completely different scenario from what I meant. Lowering your prices for the same product is one thing, and adding a product that costs less because less post-production time is involved is another. The best situation is that you find a way to differentiate yourself enough with a product that doesn't demand 40 hours of post-production yet it has the same perceived value as a product that does. That's essentially the lure of the Super 8mm film fad.

As for that youtube video - if potential clients don't see the value in what we offer its not their fault. Its ours.
Joel Peregrine is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Special Interest Areas > Wedding / Event Videography Techniques

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:24 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network