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What's YOUR Excuse? Photography Pricing Excuse #2: Because I'm Passionate about Photography

This one's gonna be fun. I particularly LOVE getting this excuse when someone is posting about how they are offering full custom all inclusive photography sessions for less than $200...

Excuse #2: "I don't charge more because I love photography and I'm passionate about what I do."

.... And you think the rest of us aren't?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

You think those of us who have turned our love for photography into a full-time career that feeds our families aren't passionate about it? Do you think my career options were Professional Lego Walker, a Port-a-potty Cleaner, and Newborn Photographer and I just randomly chose the latter because it was only slightly more appealing or because it's super easy? You think those of us who have been doing it consistently for years don't love it? Do you think those of us who took the leap to leave are stable full-time jobs to pursue photography aren't passionate about it?

News flash, we are all passionate about photography. (That's why we're photographers)

How much you love what you do shouldn't be a factor when setting your pricing. You'll notice that there's no line on my cost of doing business analysis spreadsheet where you put in how much you love photography. If you are working as a teacher or a nurse or an accountant, and your boss called you in for a meeting and asked you if you were happy working for his company and cut your salary in half because you answered yes, would you still work there? NO! It's not even legal for an employer to do this to you so why would you do it to yourself?

And here's where I get real with my advice to those of you who are charging pennies for you're photography. Passion is NOT enough. Passion might be why you picked up a camera or why you started a photography business. But it isn't enough to keep that camera in your hands. It isn't enough to keep your business open. If you want to keep being able to be a professional photographer, at some point you're going to have to learn business skills and apply them to your photography business regardless of what you "think people will pay" for your photos. If you have the passion for photography, then take photos. If you have the passion for photography AND running a business, then start a photography business. It's that simple...and by simple I mean super hard and complicated because SURPRISE running a business is freaking hard. But worth it if you are TRULY PASSIONATE about it...

Oh and ONE MORE THING! If you are truly PASSIONATE and really LOVE photography, you won't want to see our industry continue to slide down hill. Low prices have been turning our industry into a sinking ship for over a decade now.... (I know, I didn't believe it when I first started either don't worry) and the "not your clients" line doesn't apply anymore. If you are new, you may not know this, but the photography indusry tanked in 2008 and photographers who once made $400,000 a year have now closed their doors..... and those who hung in there are making a fraction of that.....If we want our industry to remain a viable career choice, then we need to stop under cutting each other and stop stripping our industry of it's value.

Coming soon: Excuse #3: "Because my husband makes enough"

Excuse #4: "Because I'm not selfish"

What's YOUR Excuse, What excuses do you see often? Tell us in the comments!


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