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Pet Photography - How much?!.... And I Could Do That With my Phone!

I wanted to cover something that lots of people might think, but never actually mention. It's one of those things where you look for a service, see a price and run a mile! You then start searching and comparing prices... and a few hours later you will probably think 'that's it, I'm not going to bother!' or in even worse scenario's 'I'll just do it myself!'

Photographers aren't cheap! (actually nothing is cheap these days) When I decided I wanted to start this pet photography venture, my first task was to research other Pet photographers and see what they offered, and how much they charged. My first thought was, 'How can they charge so much?' Then I actually sat down and thought about it!

So why can photographers charge so much for taking a few pics? Well, I want to try and break down the costs a little.

  • Travel to and from locations - This incorporates time and fuel costs.

  • Time at the location - You really need to be paying yourself an hourly rate for this.

  • Editing the images - This is the most time-consuming part, a photographer could possibly take hundreds (thousands at large events) of images in RAW format (this is a format that retains all the info in the image - Long story) These images have to be sorted, edited, colour graded, objects removed such as leads and people that might have got in the way during the shoot, de-noised (no one wants a grainy image)

  • Then of course there is wear and tear on the equipment to think about, cameras actually have a shelf life! Not kidding, every time a camera takes a photo, that reduces its life by one shot. Cameras have a life of anywhere between 100,000 shots and 250,000 - 300,000 shots (approx) That sounds a lot, but imagine taking 500 or 1000 shots in one session, and doing say, 5 sessions a week! It can soon add up, and eventually you will need a new shutter in your camera, or a new camera altogether.

  • Software, most photographers use image editing software (this is where the magic happens) The software either has to be purchased outright, or subscribed to for a monthly or yearly fee.

  • Website costs, yeah you can get some free basics, but if you want to start adding private galleries for your customers, or slide shows, then you're looking at a yearly fee for this too.

  • Insurance, well... just in case!

  • And other little bits and bobs like laptops or PC's for editing, batteries and memory cards for cameras and on and on...

Maybe photographer fees sound expensive, but when you figure in all of the above, you're actually getting a pretty good price and of course, you're getting some timeless photos of your best friend into the bargain :)

Seriously.... I could take photo's with my phone!

Then there's.... "I could take photos like that with my phone!! ". I mean, could you? Could you really? Could you get the beautiful shot with your dog posing just perfectly?

Could you get your dog to sit still, or hold his leash (if he can't be off it) while you take the photo? And then, if you want a pic with some background detail, will he stay there while you move away and get the shot?

The thing is, dog photographers work with the dog and the owner. We listen to what kind of shots you would like, and then we lie in the dirt! (yup thats right, we get to eye level with your dog to make the shots looks even better!) We lie there and wait for your dog to stop sniffing, for you to give the command of 'Sit' and then we start snapping away. And maybe from the 30ish photo's that we take from that one pose, we will get one or two where all the conditions are perfect! His eyes are open, his face is cute, he's looking the in the right direction (or at least not the other way!)

Then from those perfect shots, we edit... we blur the background, we bring out the colours of your dog, we reduce the highlights if needed, we lift the shadows so you can see that cute expression on your dog's face, we manipulate leaves and pinpoints of light, we remove leashes, and then we bring out the catch lights in the eyes.... all of this gives your photo life!

Do you still believe you can get the same kind of shots with your phone camera?

But when all is said and done, us pet photographers love doing what we do. We love animals, we love meeting the owners of these animals. We want to know what kind of memories you want from your shoot, and we want to make those memories perfect for you!

Still not convinced? Then contact me for a chat. Or ready to book? Either send me a message using the little envelope icon above, or book your Pet photography session

Dog quote time!

“Dogs do speak, but only to those who know how to listen.”– Orhan Pamuk

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