Results 1 to 13 of 13

Thread: Market rate for Food Photography

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Singapore (East)
    Posts
    27

    Default Market rate for Food Photography

    Just wanna check out the rate for food photography if i m gonna start out in this specialized field..m kinda new to this field with a some knowledge on food styling. I believe most food photography does their own styling.
    any good advice would be welcomed..
    D200 | AF-S DX 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    singapore
    Posts
    2,522

    Default Re: Market rate for Food Photography

    You should set your own rate according to what's appropriate for your own efforts.

    Eventually you'll find out how to price yourself; which rate bracket of photographer you're in; which market of client you're targeting etc.

    Just because I charge xxx for jobs does not mean you charge similar, because my efforts & standards may be different.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Dfive's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Singapore lah....
    Posts
    3,106

    Default Re: Market rate for Food Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by xictus77 View Post
    Just wanna check out the rate for food photography if i m gonna start out in this specialized field..m kinda new to this field with a some knowledge on food styling. I believe most food photography does their own styling.
    any good advice would be welcomed..
    You'll want a macro lens and a good lighting set up... some books on this topic can be found at Riceball Bookshop I think.
    See my WTS items.. :) Any sales is by meet up face to face, payment is cash only.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Market rate for Food Photography

    There's no definite rate for this. You have to factor in all the cost yourself and decide how much profit do you want out of it. How much will it cost you to rent a studio? Cost to rent the necessary lighting equipments? If you have these things, how much will you charge to recoup back what you had spent to get the studio and equipments? Cost to rent the necessary props and food stylist? Using food stylist or not, it's depending on your clients' needs.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Market rate for Food Photography

    I know it's Clubsnap common habit to advise there are no fix rate or market rates for work and one should factor their own costs and how much it's worth to charge appropriately. Not wrong advice but:

    That's where the problem lies.

    It is no longer like year 2002 where professional are really professional. Clubsnap hobby members are the new "professionals" so if you tell them to factor in the cost they decide they have no cost so they charge $2 per photo or they will even pay $20 to get something to shoot becoz they are used to paying $20 to weekend photoshoots organizers - for their hobby.

    For an aspiring pro or partimer they may want to do it right but fail to see long term situation or hidden cost factoring. Remember many partimers are salaried employees in their day job not entrepreneurs.

    I will follow up with a post later for the TS after my meeting.

  6. #6

  7. #7
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Singapore (East)
    Posts
    27

    Default Re: Market rate for Food Photography

    Thanks kandinsky...
    D200 | AF-S DX 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G

  8. #8

    Default Re: Market rate for Food Photography

    Sorry for the late reply but here's as promised.

    There's two common ways to charge, first way is by day rate, let the client have choice of half day or full day. The second way is by per image or per item charge. You must decide which way you wanna go that will benefit you more. Discuss/interview the client first to find out the requirement and then decide on the way that you can profit more or rather, won't get bullied so much. For example if the client specify they got 10 dishes, 2 angle/style/crop per dish, you are probably looking at 20 pics. If it sounds like its going to take many days to shoot that 20 pics, (due to preparation by their side, availability of only certain hours, requiring the participation of other resources like location, other people, time of the day, etc) then go by day rate to maximise your profit. If it sounds like you can complete all in a day, then go by per image charge because it is easier to understand for the client.

    When you plan how much you want to charge, you need to factor in worst case scenario, like what if your lights get stolen or destroyed and you need to rent? That is about $150 rent rate per day for lights, another $150 for camera plus lens. Buffer for stuff like that to ensure you still earn money for your time and efforts in case of such bad situations.

    FYI, a food stylist can charge more than a photographer. Bigger jobs will have art direction from a production company, a food stylist, copywriters for the text. This is a good thing, the more professionals are involved, the better the client's management of resources will be because everyone charges for their time. Individual job responsibility are also clear cut.

    A common budget rate for pro food photography is $100 to $150 per picture. If you feel confident of producing magazine quality photos, go ahead and charge at least $100 per picture and keep increasing your price till your market will bear.

    Then again, if you are just not there yet, please do not enter the market and bring down the industry. No offenses meant to you truly but these threads are emerging quite too much lately. I said it before and I will say it yet again: Either do it the proper way like a pro or don't do it at all. No half way stuff. No half bucket water like so many hobby people on clubsnap charging peanuts, producing subpar visual jokes.

    Good luck.
    Last edited by JasonB; 19th July 2012 at 10:37 PM.

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Singapore (East)
    Posts
    27

    Default Re: Market rate for Food Photography

    Thanks JasonB for your advice. Are you a pro food photog?
    D200 | AF-S DX 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Johor Bahru, Malaysia
    Posts
    1,763

    Default Re: Market rate for Food Photography

    very good point jason brought up.

    food styling is not food photography

    in food styling, some of the food cannot be eaten after styling....food photography is takin pics of food.

    this is akin to weddin photographers, lots of ppl wanna be 1.....

    i got a book on food styling...after reading it, i no longer trust photos at restaurants...lol
    Stirring up emotions with pics - cyliew

  11. #11

    Default Re: Market rate for Food Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by ijnek View Post
    very good point jason brought up.

    food styling is not food photography

    in food styling, some of the food cannot be eaten after styling....food photography is takin pics of food.

    this is akin to weddin photographers, lots of ppl wanna be 1.....

    i got a book on food styling...after reading it, i no longer trust photos at restaurants...lol
    Totally agree! Can't imagine "ingredients" coming from car mechanic workshops and medical clinic entering these food to make them look great in pictures! Totally lose appetite after styling and photographing the food with additional "ingredients"!

  12. #12

    Default Re: Market rate for Food Photography

    JasonB, your points are valid but am very surprised and upset that the 'Pro Food photography is between $100 & $150 per picture'

    Film days, in 90's , the fee to execute a group food shot was between $1200/- to $1800 & as high as $2600/- for an Ad Agency directed image. Single picture per dish was at minimum $800/- but if quantity was offered , maybe $ 400.00 per image. I once done a duck rice stall hawker centre 4 shots for $1K to do a friend a favor.

    I decided to exit the FnB Photography segment 8 yrs ago when some multi-million dollars turn-over F n B companies, with young newly appointed managers wanted below $500/- per group dish shot.

    Regards.



    Quote Originally Posted by JasonB View Post
    Sorry for the late reply but here's as promised.

    There's two common ways to charge, first way is by day rate, let the client have choice of half day or full day. The second way is by per image or per item charge. You must decide which way you wanna go that will benefit you more. Discuss/interview the client first to find out the requirement and then decide on the way that you can profit more or rather, won't get bullied so much. For example if the client specify they got 10 dishes, 2 angle/style/crop per dish, you are probably looking at 20 pics. If it sounds like its going to take many days to shoot that 20 pics, (due to preparation by their side, availability of only certain hours, requiring the participation of other resources like location, other people, time of the day, etc) then go by day rate to maximise your profit. If it sounds like you can complete all in a day, then go by per image charge because it is easier to understand for the client.

    When you plan how much you want to charge, you need to factor in worst case scenario, like what if your lights get stolen or destroyed and you need to rent? That is about $150 rent rate per day for lights, another $150 for camera plus lens. Buffer for stuff like that to ensure you still earn money for your time and efforts in case of such bad situations.

    FYI, a food stylist can charge more than a photographer. Bigger jobs will have art direction from a production company, a food stylist, copywriters for the text. This is a good thing, the more professionals are involved, the better the client's management of resources will be because everyone charges for their time. Individual job responsibility are also clear cut.

    A common budget rate for pro food photography is $100 to $150 per picture. If you feel confident of producing magazine quality photos, go ahead and charge at least $100 per picture and keep increasing your price till your market will bear.

    Then again, if you are just not there yet, please do not enter the market and bring down the industry. No offenses meant to you truly but these threads are emerging quite too much lately. I said it before and I will say it yet again: Either do it the proper way like a pro or don't do it at all. No half way stuff. No half bucket water like so many hobby people on clubsnap charging peanuts, producing subpar visual jokes.

    Good luck.
    Last edited by Volks; 20th July 2012 at 09:52 PM.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Market rate for Food Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Volks View Post
    JasonB, your points are valid but am very surprised and upset that the 'Pro Food photography is between $100 & $150 per picture'

    Film days, in 90's , the fee to execute a group food shot was between $1200/- to $1800 & as high as $2600/- for an Ad Agency directed image. Single picture per dish was at minimum $800/- but if quantity was offered , maybe $ 400.00 per image. I once done a duck rice stall hawker centre 4 shots for $1K to do a friend a favor.

    I decided to exit the FnB Photography segment 8 yrs ago when some multi-million dollars turn-over F n B companies, with young newly appointed managers wanted below $500/- per group dish shot.

    Regards.
    Sad situation indeed, similar situation with interiors and architectural, maybe Kit can chimp in on that.

    Many lament the good old days, thus when digital came, there were film vs digital conflicts, but people later adapt. Now with digital in full force and everyone and their auntie is a photographer, hobbyists shooting at $2 a pic or some even paying to get a chance to shoot and act pro, the photo industry does not look good.

    Photojournalists replaced by citizen handphone journalism is another example.

    And the darn blogshops! Commercial photography degenerating with blogshops and the wannabe fashion/commercial photogrs who are really hobbyists having fun.

    You get angry with them for destroying your ricebowl, they point nasty fingers back at you accusing pros of being jeolous, scared, should get better, what ever.

    Sunset industry. Few will survive a decade from now.
    Last edited by JasonB; 20th July 2012 at 10:18 PM.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •