Why does a photo shooting cost money?

I am always astonished about people who are surprised that a photo shoot is not for free.

Many prospective customers don´t realize that taking pictures is not just my hobby. It is my profession. And for doing this job, I need a professional equipment.

My camera costs as much as a used small car. Since a photographer usually owns several lenses, it can also come up to the price of a used middle class car.

I paid for my camera without lenses over 20.000 Dirham. As a professional photographer you need to own at least two cameras, because you already need one to replace, if the first camera suddenly goes on strike in the act.

For portrait shots in the studio you need a lot of stuff. Different backgrounds, lamps, flashes, tripods and all the other accessories also cost plenty of money. Not to mention the rent of the studio.

More than this, a professional photographer also needs a license. This license costs without visa over 6000 Dirham per year.

Only for having the equipment and also the authorization to take photos for customers, I spend a lot of money. At this point I have not gained a single Dirham. But taking photos is my job. I need to make some money by doing this.That is the reason why I charge for a one hour outdoor shooting 800 Dirham.

But please have in mind, that even before the first picture is in the box, there is a lot of work.

First step is to get in contact with the customer. Calling and writing emails also takes time.

When I luckily got the order, I have to go to the shooting. I always spend a lot of time to figure out, what kind of person my customer is. So before the actual shooting starts, half an hour has gone. For taking the pictures, I usually need a little longer than one hour. Maybe longer, if customers need time to learn, how to present themselves in front of the camera.

Back at home again, all the pictures have to be uploaded on to the PC. In a 30 minute review I select the pictures the customer will receive. Of course most of the photos are processed, before I upload them on to a protected area of my website, where the customer has the possibility to mark his favourite pictures.
So all in all the 600 Dirham offer for a one hour shooting ends in six hours of work. 

This results in an hourly wage of 100 Dirham. And from this amount I also have to pay my camera including the equipment as well as the license and the visa. 

I hope, everyone will understand now, why a photo shooting cannot be free at all.

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