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Advice Wanted: Product shooting for free

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bieomax View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote bieomax Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Advice Wanted: Product shooting for free
    Posted: 09 July 2014 at 11:33
Morning all

I'm just trying to get things right in my head before i talk to this guy seriously about it, but what it is, is that someone local wants some product shots doing of some sauces/herbs/spices sort of things for his website and he's wanting this for free.

so i'm trying to get him to confirm how many products total he wants doing,what his website is. i don't mind helping for 0-20 items sort of range as it could be something for a portfolio. as i'm considering setting up as a sole trader and starting bit of additional work (as i'm under notice of redundancy in my current job)

Also i want to protect myself a little, so i was thinking of some sort of agreement around having a small name/email address water mark on the images, and some sort of terms of usage?(any ideas on this one?) I'd also only provide web quality images at a set size.
 



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Post Options Post Options   Quote Fuzzphoto Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 July 2014 at 11:45
Do you have experience with food/product shots? It's harder than you think.

If not, you could view this as a training session. I'd do it for free, but I'd let the "guy" agree to do the shoot rights free, so you can use the shots in your portfolio, and agree with him to mention your name at the bottom of every page with your shots. Don't go for watermarks. It'll look like the images were stolen, for him that's not an option.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ricardovaste Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 July 2014 at 11:52
No problem with working for free to begin with, but never give everything away. Now keep in mind I do not work in this area, but in my area the idea would be more like:

1) To the camera work for free
2) Make them pay for the images they want after

If you just do everything for free, you have to question whether it's at all worth it. Maybe that's a personal choice. If for portfolio, would it really be too difficult to do some product shots yourself of herbs and spices ? That sounds quite manageable to me.

I think what you're looking at is:

a) do the camera work for free
b) give him everything after as well
c) ask for some sort of credit to be given

If you're happy with that, then go for it. Just be fully aware you will put a lot of work into it and then just have a few portfolio images.

Good luck!
I photograph the moments in people's lives that mean the most to them: Richard Harris Photography
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bieomax View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote bieomax Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 July 2014 at 12:11
nope no experience at all, pretty much the only prose they've given is that they want a shot of the front label of the product on a white background.

Arh so depending on how many he wants doing it maybe worth going back to him and saying a that i'll do a shoot for free and then if he likes what he see's then we can agree on a price, taking into account if they want to give credit or not, and where the rights lay

I see what you mean about the portfolio shots, i may as well just photograph things we've bought in our shopping.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Idyllic Pics Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 July 2014 at 12:12
I would strongly encourage you to not do it for free. And perhaps see it as an opportunity to practice your negotiation skills?

He's selling herbs, spices, sauces, etc, yeah?

So offer to trade your time and shots for products he is selling - or keep everything you shoot.

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bieomax View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote bieomax Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 July 2014 at 12:15
That's a very good idea Aaron, i like your thinking
 



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Idyllic Pics View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Idyllic Pics Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 July 2014 at 12:16
It's a similar deal models employ when modelling clothing for a designer at a shoot.

Hopefully his produce is worth trading for ;-)
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blinztree View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote blinztree Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 July 2014 at 17:41
Originally posted by Idyllic Pics Idyllic Pics wrote:

I would strongly encourage you to not do it for free. And perhaps see it as an opportunity to practice your negotiation skills?

He's selling herbs, spices, sauces, etc, yeah?

So offer to trade your time and shots for products he is selling - or keep everything you shoot.

As a product photographer, I fully agree that you should not work for free or for "credits". If I work on a similiar angle as his proposal, I too will be willing to sample all his wares in his store for free in returns for 'credits" that I will write on my blog, emails or other digitial materials.

The barter trade suggestion is a solid trade if he is not willing to pay for it in cash, provide you get enough value to justify your time doing it. As mentioned before, product photography is not that easy as one thinks especially when there are a lot of reflective surfaces like glass or glossy surfaces. (Unless he has a very low expectation, then otherwise anything goes...).

On the other hand, if it involves people who are willing to sign model releases, I will be willing to work for free as I can use the images in my port folio to generate revenue but in the case of products, the gain is not very much unless it is a well sort out product such as a luxery car, etc etc and he is also willing to sigh a product release.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote blinztree Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 July 2014 at 17:59
BTW, I had a recent assignment with a business owner who promised in advance to sign model releases. I made two trips personally to confirm his commitment. When I arrived on the appointed day with a ton of equipment to shoot it on a very busy street, the dear chap told me he will not sign it and said he will still allow me to use it in anyway I wish.

Guess what, I'm already on location, burning money away and my media writer is also with me. Assignment took me several days to arrange as I have to deal with different departments on my own busy schedules. So I left my light equipment by the side, took a few snap shots for the sake of testing my new CZ2470 and appearing interested as my writer had to interview them for the article.

In future, I will get the subject(s) to sign the model releases IN ADVANCE before agreeing to the photoshoot and taking the trouble hauling my media writer(s) to the location. As for the dear chap, he is on my blacklist of never-to-accept-new assignments-no matter-what!

Every day, we learn something new.
żLocation? Beats me... I'm lost on a far.far.away.tropical island.

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Post Options Post Options   Quote ricardovaste Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 July 2014 at 15:17
It's good to learn, and sorry that happened to you. Sounds frustrating. As I'm sure we're all aware, this can be one of the issues, if you are working for free, people don't respect what you're doing and so will screw around with you - not sign release forms, agree terms, make everything else difficult. The thing you need to realise is that this isn't exclusive of people who are getting "stuff for free". These people come in all shapes and sizes, with all sorts of budgets.

So whether it's free or not, you need to know how to take on work. What work to take on, what work to avoid. How to deal with it all. This is key, unless you want to spend all your working time fed up, frustrated, wasting time, chasing people, not getting paid, and every other possible circumstance you want to avoid.
I photograph the moments in people's lives that mean the most to them: Richard Harris Photography
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Post Options Post Options   Quote blinztree Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 July 2014 at 15:17
Yeap, good lesson to learn. Thanks. It's just one of those curve-balls that life (and idiots) throws at you once in a while.
żLocation? Beats me... I'm lost on a far.far.away.tropical island.

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Pirate Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 July 2014 at 15:44
Originally posted by bieomax bieomax wrote:

Morning all

I'm just trying to get things right in my head before i talk to this guy seriously about it, but what it is, is that someone local wants some product shots doing of some sauces/herbs/spices sort of things for his website and he's wanting this for free.

so i'm trying to get him to confirm how many products total he wants doing,what his website is. i don't mind helping for 0-20 items sort of range as it could be something for a portfolio. as i'm considering setting up as a sole trader and starting bit of additional work (as i'm under notice of redundancy in my current job)

Also i want to protect myself a little, so i was thinking of some sort of agreement around having a small name/email address water mark on the images, and some sort of terms of usage?(any ideas on this one?) I'd also only provide web quality images at a set size.

Whilst I can't advise on all of your points, but depending on what camera model you're using (this may be applicable if you want to use a dedicated macro ring flash), you can buy a very nice affordable portable Konig KN-STUDIO10 Portable Photo Studio Kit including tent, lights, tripod and coloured backgrounds for about £29.00 delivered (or possibly less) and is ideal for purpose. The reference to a ring flash is just in case you used a short lens and wanted a more even light cast if close-in (unlike a standard flash) unless you use a longer lens like a Tamron 90/2.8 Di Macro or longer zoom.

The type is on Amazon (UK) here, but I would do additional research on evilBay and other sites to see if you can get it for a lower price. I had one, and it's a decent product. Manufacturers website product info here and a YouTube product video here.

As for watermarking, it's not my area of expertise, though if you use PS, there's plenty of tutorials online about adding watermarks, but at least you can read about 'how to' here.

As for having shots done for free, are you going to invest time and money gratis? Err . . no! There must be a cost factor or IF you intend to do this free, ensure that any images used are shown to be taken by you and you only provide low-res small sizes (watermarked). Otherwise, charge them and they can use however they like. Don't watermark where it can simply be cropped or cloned out. Ideally do it across the image.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Pirate Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 July 2014 at 21:30
As an afterthought, why not take the images and post online where they can be purchased? At least then you'll get some revenue. RedBubble is such a site where you can input your own prices and where others can buy. A quick synopsis:

Redbubble is an online art space; a place for like-minded creative humans to gather, share, encourage, critique, and sell their art and design on high-quality products such as wall art, greeting cards, garments, and iPhone cases.

Redbubble will…

manage credit card and Paypal payments for you
provide high-quality manufacturing
take care of packaging and worldwide shipping
send you your earnings
While you get to…

retain the copyright over your art and design
set the retail price
decide which products to sell


OK, so you won't earn a fortune, but for your product images, you can set a profit margin of say 700%, so if the client want's it bad enough, then they can pay and you don't have to deal with the details. Other sites like Fotolia won't accept certain image types (you'll have to read their T&C's) and that's assuming the image(s) are accepted in the first place. RedBubble have no such restrictions.
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bieomax View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote bieomax Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 July 2014 at 10:54
Thanks for the studio info looks interesting as I've been wondering where to make one or buy one, initially I've two flashes a 4000af normally cable slaved off of a f58, I'm not sure what lens I'd use but I can just about cover most sizes in prime from 24 to 100 in at least 2.8, the 100 being the only macro.

I'll let you all know whats agreed I the end

Thanks again for your help everyone


Mark.
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