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Kaitlyn Furge Kaitlyn Furge
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Why it costs so much to have your pictures taken

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On the surface, photographers seem to have an easy job. They show up with a nice camera, click the shutter button a couple times and bam, they want you to fork over what seems like a crazy amount of cash for what they just did. So how come it costs a bizarre amount to have your pictures done? Where does the money go? Is the photographer ripping you off? From a photographer's standpoint, I'm here to explain to you just what goes into a picture. From our perspective, the numbers that we are throwing at you are completely logical, and here is why.

We work more than you think -- You think it only takes a half hour to shoot a family session, so you should only pay for a half hour of work. Sure, you may only see us work for a select amount of time, but that is the tip of the ice berg. After shooting, we have to edit, which can easily take two to three times longer than the shoot. Added to that, we probably spent more time preparing for the shoot, by scouting a location, setting up a shot list, and consulting with you to figure out exactly what you wanted. So yes, we 'click the button' for a half an hour, but we work our tails off before and after that to get the images right.

We have made an investment -- A fancy camera does not make you a good photographer, but a good photographer needs decent tools to work with. It's more than likely these tools are expensive. Besides the initial equipment that it takes to capture the photograph, serious shutterbugs have also have dished out dough for things like editing programs. Education to get into the business is also expensive. Like any business, photographers want their investment to eventually pay for itself and make money. We also realize that you are making an investment as well. You are going to be looking at these pictures for a long time, and they are going to represent major life events for you, which is why we invest a lot as well.

We run a business -- The bottom line is that photography is a business like anything else. We spend time strategizing and marketing ourselves like any other business. We pay taxes like any other business, and we need to make a profit like any other business. That's just life.

The next time you look to hire a professional photographer, think about these things. Before your eyes bug out of your head, realize that we just didn't pull a number out of thin air. Also realize that you are making an investment to create family keepsake. Photographers aren't out to rob you, but they are out to fashion fantastic images.

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