Why do professional photographers cost so much?

I found this article on a fellow photographers web page and I thought I would share it with you.

Why are Professional Photographers so expensive? In this digital age where everyone has digital cameras, scanners and home “photo printers”, when people upload their photos to a local drug store website and pick them up a few hours later, we hear this all the time – How in the world do Professional Photographers charge $55 for an 8×10 when they cost just $1.50 at the drug store? Here’s why.

Simply put, you’re not just paying for the actual photograph, you’re paying for time and expertise in creating the image itself. First, let’s look at the actual time involved. If you don’t read this entire page, at least read this first part.For a two hour portrait session:– one hour of travel to and from the session– two hours of shooting– 30 minutes of setup, preparation, talking to the client etc.– 30 minutes to load the photos onto a computer (2 – 4 Gb of data)– 30 minutes to back up the files on multiple external drives plus DVD’s– 3 – 4 hours of Photoshop time including cropping, contrast, color, sharpening, saving a copy for print and a copy for the internet and backing up the edited photographs– 2 – 3 hours to talk to the client, answer questions, receive their order and payment, order their prints, receive and verify prints, package prints, schedule shipment and drop package off at Fed Ex.For local customers, we meet them at our studio to review the photos and place their order. Meeting and travel time averages 2 hours. You can see how one two hour session easily turns into more than ten hours of work from start to finish.

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