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Thread: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

  1. #41

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Lim View Post
    ...Reason being, these days, couples are spoilt for choices so much that many not all are disillusioned by the price wars rather then the question of "How do you put a price on memories?".

    Chris.
    I'm seriously considering trademarking this phrase

  2. #42

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Quote Originally Posted by hongwen37 View Post
    Yes... I like your attitude!!! A lot of PGs are too busy worrying about "whether their business will be snatched by the $50/hour newbie on the block" to even care about upgrading themselves or thinking about their own shoot...

    A lot of these "never been seen" photos are often replicated by other PGs.. and soon, every part timer or hobbyist PG's website portfolio appears to show the same kind of photos... So, we (i mean photographers in general) have to constantly find new ideas to the same old story to differentitate ourselves...

    I know of some full time PGs who put very little photos on their website and only show couples his other portfolios when they requested... This is so to prevent people from copying their styles and photos... These are some of the many things that the possible Wedding PGs meetup should focus on, I think... But I am just an observer from the outside world who just happened to be interested in these wedding stuff... So, i shouldnt say more...

    yup..i agree with you.

    but there are some who think tt its okay to copy.
    a better excuse commonly used would be...imitation is the best form of flattery

  3. #43

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Quote Originally Posted by knoxknocks View Post
    I'm seriously considering trademarking this phrase
    Haha its just soooo good. =)

  4. #44
    Senior Member Lomographer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    agree with lumiere, if someone copies you it must mean you have substance!

    haha, but of course not everyone is agreeable to that, but you can't trademark a style... so yea

    but of course don't have to keep trying to copy someone's style

    forge your own... i would think thats the best
    Pentax K-x

  5. #45

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    I applaud senior buddies here like canturn and a few others are contributing ideas to help each other survive the toughest of times.

    The competition has gone so fierce in the lower segment. I was told afew bridal shops are hiring people from overseas on wp pass to shoot weddings. Imagine 15 weddings a month for $1000 salary is really making it downright dirt cheap to shoot a wedding! So $66 a wedding shoot, 12hrs per job work makes it 5 bucks an hour!

    A horrible assignment:
    It has been decided that I need to shoot a relative wedding for free!!! Can you guys beat that? And i have to packet $600 angpao for them because we are related! Also, i had been asked to drive the wedding car! WOW!!! I am gonna be the Amazing Camera-man who dou tiap! (negative earnings).

    Can someone teach me how to shake off the $0 assignment to be the ultimate wedding cameraman cum wedding car driver? Also, i am expected to include prints! And the best part is, the couple didnt even bother to call me while the wedding is a month away.

    OK, the hard core reality aside, it is good to really learn from the seniors here. And yes, i do agree with many here that upping the price is going to make our lives more livable!

  6. #46

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Quote Originally Posted by contaxable View Post
    A horrible assignment:
    It has been decided that I need to shoot a relative wedding for free!!! Can you guys beat that? And i have to packet $600 angpao for them because we are related! Also, i had been asked to drive the wedding car! WOW!!! I am gonna be the Amazing Camera-man who dou tiap! (negative earnings).

    Can someone teach me how to shake off the $0 assignment to be the ultimate wedding cameraman cum wedding car driver? Also, i am expected to include prints! And the best part is, the couple didnt even bother to call me while the wedding is a month away.
    Camera spoil, need to send for servicing

  7. #47
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    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Hey guys, not sure why there's so much talk about newcomers flooding the market and cheap prices etc. It's been happening for years and years and years. Every generation of wedding photographers before us has faced the same problem and unless we're out to change the rules of a free market economy, there's really no way to change this.

    I think one of the problems in Singapore is whenever we think about improvements in the industry, we always think in terms of higher pay. What about discussing improvements in other areas?

    While increasing prices might be nice for the pros, there's still many other issues this industry needs to work through to create a cohesive standard that can dramatically improve our lives, such as what should be the industry standard when it comes to copyright? How should it be enforced?

    When we tell our clients full day coverage, what the industry standard for the number of hours? what should the common deliverables be to a clients in terms of the number of images for say a 10 hour day?

    Should it be an industry norm for a photographer to have a meal/break after xxx numbers of hours of coverage?

    What is a realistic amount of time an express edit can be done in?

    Does the industry want to condone table to table shots?

    These are just some of the issues that i think there needs to be an industry standard to.

    Having a set of industry standards that address non monetary issues can also dramatically improve your lives.

    Quote Originally Posted by contaxable View Post
    I applaud senior buddies here like canturn and a few others
    are contributing ideas to help each other survive the toughest of times.

    The competition has gone so fierce in the lower segment. I was told afew bridal shops are hiring people from overseas on wp pass to shoot weddings. Imagine 15 weddings a month for $1000 salary is really making it downright dirt cheap to shoot a wedding! So $66 a wedding shoot, 12hrs per job work makes it 5 bucks an hour!

  8. #48

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Quote Originally Posted by contaxable View Post

    A horrible assignment:
    It has been decided that I need to shoot a relative wedding for free!!! Can you guys beat that? And i have to packet $600 angpao for them because we are related! Also, i had been asked to drive the wedding car! WOW!!! I am gonna be the Amazing Camera-man who dou tiap! (negative earnings).

    Can someone teach me how to shake off the $0 assignment to be the ultimate wedding cameraman cum wedding car driver? Also, i am expected to include prints! And the best part is, the couple didnt even bother to call me while the wedding is a month away.

    OK, the hard core reality aside, it is good to really learn from the seniors here. And yes, i do agree with many here that upping the price is going to make our lives more livable!
    Dude that is simple - learn to say no if not learn to give less $ hell give $100 and an invoice for services that you are not collecting. People do this to you simply because you encourage them. After agreeing to do all that you got cheek to complain to us here.... HeHe throw shoe at you.

  9. #49

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Good points .... to many couple who expect follow around service (aka from xxam to xxpm continous) often forget to not only allow you time to freshen up but also time for you to eat and ah yes provide a meal.... The $20++ to $25++ burgers at various ***** hotels are dam painful. It is in my T&C - bitten too many times food and time to eat/revamp for next round are a must.

    Full day service need to be charged at a different rate from more time sane coverage.... thinking on this since these are the killer assignments.



    Table to table shots the bane of the PJ shooter - yeah it is grunt work but for asian society party of the formals. Even our Ang Mo culture has table to table so it is not that dmeaning a thing to shoot.....its not like you need to do a sensual shot of a 300 pounder.



    Quote Originally Posted by ckuang View Post
    Hey guys, not sure why there's so much talk about newcomers flooding the market and cheap prices etc. It's been happening for years and years and years. Every generation of wedding photographers before us has faced the same problem and unless we're out to change the rules of a free market economy, there's really no way to change this.

    I think one of the problems in Singapore is whenever we think about improvements in the industry, we always think in terms of higher pay. What about discussing improvements in other areas?

    While increasing prices might be nice for the pros, there's still many other issues this industry needs to work through to create a cohesive standard that can dramatically improve our lives, such as what should be the industry standard when it comes to copyright? How should it be enforced?

    When we tell our clients full day coverage, what the industry standard for the number of hours? what should the common deliverables be to a clients in terms of the number of images for say a 10 hour day?

    Should it be an industry norm for a photographer to have a meal/break after xxx numbers of hours of coverage?

    What is a realistic amount of time an express edit can be done in?

    Does the industry want to condone table to table shots?

    These are just some of the issues that i think there needs to be an industry standard to.

    Having a set of industry standards that address non monetary issues can also dramatically improve your lives.

  10. #50

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Me too looking forward to an informal gathering of Wedding Photographers here. It would be good to learn from each other and have a meet up once in a while.

    I am only doing Malay Weddings/ Engagements currently and I also felt the pinch of the slowdown in orders and bookings. Ironically, most Malay couples usually looks at your price first before they make any bookings for a PG (I am a Malay btw). They don't really care about what your package contains. Once they are happy and comfortable about your price, then they will start looking at your package contents.

    Had this experience where 2 photographers, including myself, were engagaged for a wedding. After I deliver all the items, the bride and bridegroom complained that the other photographer did not give these and that and bla bla bla.... However, as a photographer myself, I believe that the other photographer charged them what he thinks his work and efforts are worth. And shooting alongside him, I really think that he's good.

    Nonetheless, seeing many newbies and Wedding PG wannabes in the market now and charging ridiculous prices, I really pity the Full time Wedding Photographers. However, I believe that the pie is big and everyone could have a fair share.

    Lastly, all the best to us........

  11. #51
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    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Quote Originally Posted by ckuang View Post
    Hey guys, not sure why there's so much talk about newcomers flooding the market and cheap prices etc. It's been happening for years and years and years. Every generation of wedding photographers before us has faced the same problem and unless we're out to change the rules of a free market economy, there's really no way to change this.

    I think one of the problems in Singapore is whenever we think about improvements in the industry, we always think in terms of higher pay. What about discussing improvements in other areas?

    While increasing prices might be nice for the pros, there's still many other issues this industry needs to work through to create a cohesive standard that can dramatically improve our lives, such as what should be the industry standard when it comes to copyright? How should it be enforced?

    When we tell our clients full day coverage, what the industry standard for the number of hours? what should the common deliverables be to a clients in terms of the number of images for say a 10 hour day?

    Should it be an industry norm for a photographer to have a meal/break after xxx numbers of hours of coverage?

    What is a realistic amount of time an express edit can be done in?

    Does the industry want to condone table to table shots?

    These are just some of the issues that i think there needs to be an industry standard to.

    Having a set of industry standards that address non monetary issues can also dramatically improve your lives.
    Kuang, thanks for the input.

    Might want to talk about soft copies/digital files too. I find that people just gives away high or even full-res files too easily here, and not knowing the implications.

  12. #52

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    I guess the question many of us would like to ask, and find the answer for, is how do we start to help the wedding photography industry move up a notch here in the Singapore market? Let's take the giving out of all images shot during the day as an example. I think all, if not most of the photographers here provide "the return of all images in hi res" as part of the package.

    I believe the overseas wedding market do not have this "practise". Rather, for a given package, x number of images are included. For any additional images, it must be bought at extra cost. This is somewhat like the model bridal shops here in Singapore adopt. However, unless all of us here is united to adopt this model and get rid of the "return of all images in hi res" component, it is likely to be suicidal for a photographer to enforce this, unless his work is so super unique and good that couples have no choice but to accept this. For the rest of us, who would dare to venture out and do this?

  13. #53
    Senior Member limwhow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Quote Originally Posted by contaxable View Post
    ...
    The competition has gone so fierce in the lower segment. I was told afew bridal shops are hiring people from overseas on wp pass to shoot weddings. Imagine 15 weddings a month for $1000 salary is really making it downright dirt cheap to shoot a wedding! So $66 a wedding shoot, 12hrs per job work makes it 5 bucks an hour!
    ...
    Can someone teach me how to shake off the $0 assignment to be the ultimate wedding cameraman cum wedding car driver? Also, i am expected to include prints! And the best part is, the couple didnt even bother to call me while the wedding is a month away.
    ...
    Simple. You do 20 of the most important shots with your best styles and print it out to show the world that you're a person of substance.

    Then hire the $5-an-hour foreign person with WP to shoot everything else and burn it into DVD for your relative.
    Since your're already going to give $600 hongbao, then this 10 hours x $5 = $50 more in hiring the foreign photog is not significant. Can save you lots of sweat & face (oh... this not taken by me.. mine are over there..)

    Driver? Oh, another $7 per hour for a foreign worker with driving licence.
    Hey, man... you're free already lor!

  14. #54

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    yeah, it seem like after I tell the clients the cost for the job... they don't reply after that... so the future of photographer will be in the freelance mode... cheaper then full time... $100-$400 ang pao money... we need to united so that the full time photographers don't become part time... else the quality of photographers of Singapore might go down...
    Leica M4P/ M2 / Summarit 35mm f2.5 / Summicron C40mm f2 / Kobalux 21mm f2.8

  15. #55

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Quote Originally Posted by ahsamhui View Post
    Hi,

    how's business lately? I only advertise on Sg Birde. Got 2-3 enquiries daily but only 1-2 responses every week.

    Have just up my price by a K. Got 1 sign up since adjustment last mth.

    I'm planning to getting a regular job soon. This doen't mean I'm giving up, I'll fight on.

    I know I may not be in a good position (since only got 8mths experience) to say anything but I want to encourage my brothers here:

    不要放弃

    Jia You everybody!

    yeah times r bad but not for photog only, all sector, times r quite bad so be it, maybe someday u end up with regular job but that doesn't mean it's goin to be bed of roses,
    hang on , when bad times over u be a stronger and more experience photog in wedding photog biz

    cheers

  16. #56

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Just came back from a church gig... saw this thread, nice contributions by folks here..

    OK, let me reply bit by bit:

    zan82,
    your suggestion for spoil cam doesnt really help. I do lug around wif few cams usually.

    ckuang,
    good and valid points here about the prep work one needs to do in order to up pricing. It cannot just be a wizard wish with magic wan. When one up price, one has to do more quality works. A proper wedding contract is ideal indeed and it will probably works out the Ts&Cs.
    As for table shoots, honestly, it has to be agreed during contract signing. Some contracts may be signed a year or two ahead, and so it can take time to really adjust forward.

    Ellery
    Siam your shoes first.
    OK, info had been passed down to me thru another relative. I had not spoken to the couple nor the parents yet. It is assumed i need to be there and do those. I had not agreed either as i told my relative i want to be a guest for that day and not worked through the dinner. In fact i can play ignorant until the big day. But i am inclined to resolve it by either sponsoring a budget photographer for them or toss the coin back to the couple. After a few months, they didnt bother to show up or even ask us, while we have been doing most of the planning for them for many other things. Really horrible couple who could not be bothered. The rationale was the couple doesnt know much about wedding stuff and so they wont be getting involved.

    limwhow,
    good suggestion. really tempting to apply but it could ruin my repu..... hehe

    canturn
    Your inputs are practical and valuable.. However, there are really couples who request for raw. Fact is, there are professional photographers who gives them out freely. Some give unedited raw out and keep edited ones so he can make some $ printing for couples. But to me, such small amt of profits to earn from 4R prints is quite little and is to me a waste of time to run around.
    However, I am also not in favor of giving raws too due to ownership issue.


    I once heard a wise man said: "When you sell very cheap, you cannot afford to drop your price further. When you sell expensive, you will have many ways to play with figures and still make a living."
    Last edited by contaxable; 19th July 2009 at 12:49 AM.

  17. #57

    Default Re: Fellow wedding photographers: Don't give up!

    Hi all,

    thank you for all your contribution. I started this thread just an encouragement but I can't help but feel that it is slowly turning into an ave for resentment. (not saying all or targetting who)

    I never have a problem with those who charges low or very,very low. It's their freedom to do whatever they want. I've also never feel anything about spoiling market by these people.
    Let's face it, if one is good then one will get the job. Maybe I am ofld school thinking but it's the same with every other line of job in the world.

    While we can't and do not have the right to control others, we can always change oursalves.
    During my down time, I dig out all my previous photos and do "trouble shooting"
    Also practice my PS skill on these old wedding photos. All these has paid of now.

    In this line for less than 8mths, charging above 2k and still get sign ups, I am more than thankful.

    Just one last word before I close this thread: Life is fair. If you want to drive benz, need to start using your brain. (from Sam Hui's song) Not insulting anyone but just an old truth.

    Thanks for contributing.

    Best wishes,
    Dave Koh

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