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r3g
09-27-2007, 12:49 AM
Ok so this saterday Ive been called upon to set up a database of player IDs for a basketball camp (thats the easy part). The hard part is on the side though I will be able to take general pictures which is good because parents love to buy pictures. My problem is 1. I dont have the equipment to print on site, and 2. being a college student I dont have the money for a Smugmug account to sale pictures from.

So my question is.. What would be a good way to go about selling my pictures? I know this may be a bit of a duh type of question but I want/need reassurance from people who are experienced in this sort of thing. Keep in mind this will be my first time selling photos at an event.



PS - If it helps any I do have business cards.

TheObiJuan
09-27-2007, 03:57 AM
If you are not prepared, don't do it.
If you can not reasonably offer the best you could do, why would you risk it?
Do you know any local photogs from which you may rent a printer?

Do you own a website domain? If so, how knowledgeable are you at setting it up?
You could establish your own paypal linked gallery.

If you don't have a website you may have to bite down and purchase an online account to market yourself. I do not see a reasonable alternative.

I wish you luck with your endeavor.

urfslam
09-27-2007, 05:21 AM
Why don't you burn DVDs with the pictures on them? You probably couldn't charge as much for a printed pictures but your overhead would be the dvds. Then the parents could do what they wanted with the pictures.

Urf

tcadwall
09-27-2007, 06:38 AM
Well, a couple of things.

1) risk and reward.

Remember, a small investment may mean income now and down the road. Parents will buy pictures. Whether you do prints or sell the digital files, there is money to be made. If you don't do an online presence you WONT sell as much. If you utilize an online service to host and print your shots, people will be very likely to purchase. If you have them contact you instead, it is not as convenient and your sales will not be as high. But then again, lower sales, less expense as well.

2) What you need:

You need to decide whether you could take the risk of starting an online presence. If you have the time to do this now, then put together some flyers to promote it at the event. If you are considering it based on feedback, STILL put together some flyers without web information, but with your email address and phone number. Give a basic idea of what the pricing will be and what products you intend to sell.

Do some research on photo sites. I did have a short list a while back, but haven't reached a point where I really want to go to the trouble. I am already working a 40hr+ job, running a side business, and have 2 kids, a wife, volunteer work, and a house that require a decent amount of time as well. But there are great hosting plans out there, that could be very quick, easy, powerful, and tailored to exactly what you would need. Some of them even include credentials for you as a photographer, business cards, etc.

TheObiJuan
09-27-2007, 07:10 AM
I should have mentioned this website in my earlier post.

http://www.photoshelter.com/tour/feature/price

r3g
09-27-2007, 11:48 AM
If you are not prepared, don't do it.
If you can not reasonably offer the best you could do, why would you risk it?



This thread is about getting prepared... I am all set to take the profile shots shots this thread has nothing to do with that. As far as promoting I have business cards and a poster Im going to put up at the door. Ive taken pictures at sporting events before just never sold them. Why risk it? Because this is going to be a good learning experience for me. If i cant figure out what Im going to do today then I wont offer pictures for sale. Dont think I would walk into this thing "blind". But it wouldnt be all the smart to not even TRY to get something going. Of course I would have planned this a long time ago but I just got the call to do it last night.

And yes I have my own website domain and gallery but no pay system.

r3g
09-27-2007, 12:38 PM
Change of plans.. I was running this by my wonderful mother this morning and she offered to buy me a Smugmug account. :)

fionndruinne
09-27-2007, 12:39 PM
Personally I don't go for the "don't take a risk" idea, especially for a new photographer. Maybe on down the road, when a reputation develops, caution will be necessary, but for now, risk is the way to learn, and people are more accepting this early into the gate. Go for it! The worst you can do is look like a fool in front of some parents; heck, they're used to it.

Good luck.

erichlund
09-27-2007, 01:14 PM
A couple of questions come to mind:

Why did you get called upon? Did the regular guy get caught up in something else or just move on? Was there a "regular guy"?

You might be able to call upon the "regular guy" for assistance, if he still has a good relationship with the organization you are supporting. If not, who knows what they did before, and how can that person help you be successful? You have to assume they want you to succeed, so they want to help you if there is some way that they can.


What equipment do you have and can it be adapted to on site use (Beg / Borrow / Not Steal:()?

You may be thinking you need a laptop, but if they can set you up in a location with power (usually necessary anyway), you might just take your desktop PC/printer and set up for the event. It's not ideal, but you use the tools you have. Go to CostCo or an office supply and get one of those 6ft folding tables. They're only about $35-$40, and they are useful for a ton of things. Also, ask about paper skirting material to go around the front and sides of the table. It should be dirt cheap, and hides all the hideous details going on under the table (power cords, knobby knees, boxes of supplies, etc).

Finally, set your prices according to your ability to deliver a professional product.

3In2Out
09-27-2007, 01:18 PM
Change of plans.. I was running this by my wonderful mother this morning and she offered to buy me a Smugmug account. :)

Was going to suggest that, or a small sig loan from the bank...but didnt want to offend or anything if it wasnt something you wanted to do. Congrats! :cool:

r3g
09-27-2007, 01:20 PM
This is a Basketball organization I work with (and use to play for). They called upon me because they know me and know I can give them good results. This wouldnt be the first time I put my camera to use for them. On top of the pay I get from them they willingly allow me to promote myself and sell pictures personally which until now is something I wasnt in a position to do. But now that I have a Smugmug account all I have to do is print some of my cards to hand out to people. Im not expecting uber results this weekend but in about 3 weeks there is another event coming up, a big one. I want to be ready for that.

tcadwall
09-28-2007, 07:50 AM
That sounds like a great resolution. Wishing you the best, and I know you will do fine. I didn't want to come across pushy, but I agree that the risk is WELL worth taking. It is such a small (but small is relative I know) investment, that you should have NO problem recoup'ing the startup cost (since you are already set up equipment-wise). And heck if someone is fronting you the startup - that shows that you already have some rapport. That will be all you need. I know of several people that have just asked organizations for permission to shoot at their sporting events and sell the photos online. They have thriving businesses. The key thing you will need to consider is security. When you venture into a place where you are a stranger, having a secured login for parents would be the prudent solution. You can pass out cards with blank spaces that you write in a event name as a login, and a password for the event.

Don't be afraid to post more questions or even PM me if you would like.

r3g
09-28-2007, 10:25 AM
Thx very much! Thats really interesting what you said about the login. Whats is the advantage of posting the pictures in a private gallery instead of a public one? I realize that if public ANYONE is free to download and buy the photos but when we are talking about athletes whos dream is to be famous will the kids/parents really care? I know when I was in the prime of my basketball career i would want pictures of my on sports galleries to be public.

erichlund
09-28-2007, 12:59 PM
Thx very much! Thats really interesting what you said about the login. Whats is the advantage of posting the pictures in a private gallery instead of a public one? I realize that if public ANYONE is free to download and buy the photos but when we are talking about athletes whos dream is to be famous will the kids/parents really care? I know when I was in the prime of my basketball career i would want pictures of my on sports galleries to be public.

I can see some issues. For instance, you miss something in a photo that is embarassing or unflattering to a particular kid. If it's private, no damage done. If it's public, you may have some irate parents to deal with. Then there's the possibility you have placed for public sale images for which you do not have a model release. If it's a big group shot, maybe OK. If it's one kid as the main subject, there may be unhappy people to deal with. If you want shots for a public portfolio, just ask permission from the subjects and their legal guardians. I'm sure there will be no problem for the vast majority.

r3g
09-28-2007, 01:12 PM
Private it is then. :D:p

erichlund
09-28-2007, 04:50 PM
Another thing. If you have a shot you really like and want on your public portfolio, you could always offer a discount to the parents if their waffling about letting you use it.

tcadwall
09-29-2007, 08:23 PM
Sorry,

But you guys missed a couple of the most important reason. The number one reason would be that there are parents (or other adults) that have restraining orders against them regarding their/others' children. Sometimes for the child's safety, the parent, or whomever, is not even supposed to know where the child lives, goes to school etc. Playing sports would be included in that. Any public broadcast (and yes that includes the internet) must protect children that are at risk. There are laws (at least in my state) that back up this broadcast rule. As a result children at school can be photographed, video taped, etc. only if the child has a signed waiver. If the child does not have a waiver signed by the parents then their image must be blurred. Our schools here do pass out waivers at the beginning of each school year.

The second reason is that if you DO you some security, and pass out the login information then the parents will be more likely to appreciate what you are doing, and that you are doing what you can to be protective of the images that you are taking. My children are at no more risk than average, yet I am very protective of someone I don't know pointing a lens at them. If the person had already approached our team, and informed us what was going on, and gave us information, then I would be much less concerned.

r3g
09-29-2007, 08:27 PM
Good info tcadwall. But I found out when I got there that all the kids in the camp signed a release during registration so I have all rights to photograph and post them on the internet :]

tcadwall
09-29-2007, 08:41 PM
Well, that is certainly kewl. Just remember it won't always be that way.