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Tutorials and Guides: Discuss Photography.. Going pro part2...Part 2 Ok so you have decided to turn your hobby into earning money, in this section I will be ...
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Old 23-02-2007, 15:26   #1 (permalink)
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Going pro part2

Part 2

Ok so you have decided to turn your hobby into earning money, in this section I will be outlining the legal implications of going self employed, or earning extra income whilst still employed. It is up to you whether or not you take this advice.
Unfortunately this is the point at which you have to stop looking at photography as a hobby and start looking at it as a business, this is where you will really have to make a big decision as the hobby you loved can now become hard work.

1st of all you will have to let your local tax office know the date that you start trading, you will also have to pay extra national insurance contributions.
It is my personal opinion that an accountant at this point would be well appointed. They will if they are any good save you more money than they cost.

As you are now in business your assets, camera, computer equipment, lenses, vehicle, telephone etc all have tax deductable advantages to greater or lesser degrees. What this means is that at the end of the financial year any money spent on such things and consumables like ink cartridges and paper are deducted from any taxable profits that you make. Equipment has a depreciation value as do vehicles. Some things you may consider whilst thinking of deductable monies (some of which you may only claim a percentage against) are,

Camera and lenses
Computers and laptops
Software
Vehicles
Fuel
Car tax and insurance
Repairs
Telephone and mobile phone bills
Ink
Paper
Postage, envelopes packing
Insurance
Flights and accommodation (I take stock photos so am at work when on holiday!!!)
Food whilst on location

The list goes on, I would advise talking to an accountant about such matters as they will be able to give you much better advice on this than me, these are just some examples of what I claim myself.

Another very important thing to consider at this time is what to charge…..

You will have to take into consideration many of the above expenses when reaching this figure but it is vital that you get this right at the outset. If you charge £25.00 for 1 job then a week later the same client wants something similar and you charge £175.00 they are going to want to know why.

It is very easy when starting out to not charge enough because you are not established or do not have a big enough client base yet but this can come back and bite you on the ass as I have found out myself. If customers suck in their breath or say somebody else will do it for less then let them, Work out how much it will cost you to do a job and do include travel expenses, fuel, parking food if it is a long job etc, and then your time. Your time is not just for taking the photographs either, be realistic in how long the post processing will take and the cost of any cd/dvd’s and or contact prints requested.

As a ball park figure I charge £120.00 for up to the 1st hour then £75.00 an hour after that plus prints etc. that is for Page Ranking type shots etc, obviously weddings or portrait sessions would be different but I will be looking at these at a later date.

I hope this has helped and not scared people to death.
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Old 23-02-2007, 17:00   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Photography.. Going pro part2

this is really interesting Gary! cant wait for the next installment! ( not that im even considering it) but its still handy to know.

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Old 23-02-2007, 18:51   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Photography.. Going pro part2

Keep 'em rolling!
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Old 23-02-2007, 22:12   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Photography.. Going pro part2

Good stuff Gary, very informative.
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Old 23-02-2007, 22:33   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Photography.. Going pro part2

lovely stuff.... don't stop now!!!!
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Old 23-02-2007, 23:07   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Photography.. Going pro part2

The advice given by Gary is excellent, very informative and will help anyone taking the step. Well done Gary, we all look forward too more........
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Old 24-02-2007, 08:37   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Photography.. Going pro part2

Excellent stuff Gary.

Don't forget all members have the option to give some Rep points if you've appreciated anyone's post
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Old 07-03-2007, 20:05   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Photography.. Going pro part2

One thing that I had to add to Gary's advice for charging:
It's always hard to explain to a client why they now have to pay more than what they used to, or why the price has gone up for any reason at all.

A very simple solution (and great way to improve client relations) is to invoice them for your 'full price' and add in a promotional discount, or new client discount that rounds the total to what you actually expect to be paid for the first shoot. In this way, if you're still not comfortable charging what you eventually want to be your full price, you can haggle it down with the customer to where they still feel they're getting a good deal, and you're still making more than what you probably would have accepted to do the job.
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Old 05-07-2007, 20:30   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Photography.. Going pro part2

fantastic bump
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