Saturday, April 12, 2008

Why It Costs So Much...

Taken from the blog of photographer Ben Vigil. I hope he doesn’t mind me sharing because I couldn't have said it better myself. Thanks Ben.

“What a lot of people don’t realize is that pressing the shutter is only the first step in the process that makes the image. Many photographers have developed a signature style that incorporates not just the subjects and the moment they captured but also the “way” they process their images in Photoshop: the color pallets they prefer, the effects they employ, the textures they apply to the background, etc.. Indeed, the reality and the final image are often quite far apart. On the other side of the spectrum, even those photographers who get paid hefty sums for their “candid and stirring photojournalistic style” often labor over the post-processing of an image. The difference between the former and the latter is simply a matter of style and sometimes degree.

People sometimes seem to think that we press the shutter and out comes a piece of art. This thought process usually precedes some question about how we can justify charging $xxx for a 4×6 photo or why albums cost so much. Setting aside the artistic element (which in the end is reason enough to charge whatever your work as an artist is valued at), the simple fact of the matter is that the amount of work involved in producing a 4×6 is the same as a 30×40 canvas gallery wrap".

I personally spend a lot of time post-processing my images individually so they are just the way I envisioned them. This usually takes several hours or days depending on the number of images taken. Sometimes I spend more time processing my images than I do creating them. And I never give my clients any images that haven’t been edited to some degree. This is what you are paying for, my artistic style and vision and the creative process as a whole.

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