“Hows your photography business going?”, I am often asked. I like to say, “I’m not really in the photography business. I’m in the “memories” business!”
Obviously that always brings the perplexed look and the invitation to elaborate.
I was recently discussing with a group of business colleagues the subject of pricing and amount of work that, in their opinion WAS NOT out there and in my opinion WAS available.
I went on to explain it this way; When a Mom or a Dad wants something special of their athlete playing their sport of choice, they have a few options.
1) Use their own camera with their “Kit Lens” or their “Point and Shoot”.
2) Hope that the minimum wage people at Life Touch Studios, that only shoot one angle, all the time and try to get as many “snap shots” as they can for the school year book, get one of their kid.
3) Hope the local newspaper has a decent photographer that day that covers the game
or the final alternative; Hire a professional sports photographer that understands the sport, angles, composition and works for the right shot.
I had one of my non photography business associates ask how I could charge so much to go shoot one kid playing a single game.
I asked him if he had any shots of of his kid playing baseball on his I Phone. He did and gladly showed them to me. I then pulled out my phone, went to my website http://CincinnatiSportsPhotography.com and showed him THIS gem.
I said..”THAT’s why a parent pays me to come shoot his kid in an event. I then showed him shot after shot of the same type of action shots that I had captured for clients.
I said to my friend, “The parent is not paying me to take pictures of his kid. He is paying me to create memories and give him something for his wall that no one else has of their kid”.
The next time someone calls you and inquires about your pricing, ask them a question before you throw out a price. Ask this simple question, that causes them to think.
“Pricing? well that depends. Are you wanting pictures or are you wanting memories? If you just want snap shots, I’m probably not your person. If you want something special that will still awe you 20 years from now, I might be your person”
THAT… is the difference!
I get phone calls all the time from a Mom or a Dad, asking me to give a price to come out and photograph their son or daughter playing a particular sport or a coach will call me to come and shoot a team in an event.
My prices are not the cheapest. I generally charge between $250-$400 per event, depending on the circumstances.
While I don’t get a lot of resistance to my pricing, due to the reputation I have as a sports photographer, I still occasionally do get the; “Wow, That’s pretty high!”
My response is always one of two questions, depending on what mood I am in.
Response one: “Are you referring to price or cost?” or two; “What criteria do you normally use, when choosing a professional sports photographer?”
Are you paying for photos or are you paying for memories?
If you are simply buying pictures then find someone with a camera from Best Buy and give them $25 and let them post 400 shots on their website.
However, if you have a special occasion and you want it captured for a keepsake, you need a professional.
When you hire a professional sports photographer to shoot action photos of a sporting event, you are not only paying for their time and effort, you are paying for their experience, knowledge of the game flow, understanding the angles and game momentum and anticipation.
You’re paying a professional sports photographer for their professional grade cameras with extreme low light capabilities. You’re renting their high speed professional grade lenses that can run $8000 to $10,000.00.
I’ve shot tens of thousands of action photos in little league baseball, select ball, football, basketball and other sports.
Every now and then I capture a moment like this.
Eaton, Ohio 8th grade basketball player Donnie Nicodemus was driving to the hoop in the Southwestern Buckeye League Championship game in Camden, Ohio at Preble Shawnee High School recently.
The lighting in the gym was not the worst I’ve shot in, but it wasn’t good either.
I was shooting a Nikon D700 with a Nikkor 80-200mm 2.8 lens and 5000 ISO and 1/800th of a second.
When I grabbed this frame and looked at the image, I realized that I had gotten Donnie’s Mom in the background.
This wasn’t just a picture, but rather a lifetime keepsake for Mom and son.
There is no greater satisfaction as a professional sports photographer than presenting a parent with a shot like this. I’ve shot a lot of pictures of Donnie as a result of little league photography. One I shot of him this past year was this pitching photo, with the Eaton Express, which became one of my favorites.
Why do you pay a professional photographer vs “Mom or Guy with Best Buy camera”, you don’t pay a professional for pictures and images. You hire a professional for memories that will hold a special place in your heart and soul for years to come.
Posted by Monroe Ohio photographer Vincent Rush, Cincinnati Sports Photography and Dayton Sports Photography of Monroe Ohio. Vince Rush can be contacted by phone at (877) 858-6295 or by email at email@example.com or visit http://CincinnatiSportsPhotography.com
Vincent Rush is a an Ohio based professional sports photographer that primarily serves as a Dayton Sports Photographer and Cincinnati sports photographer.
I am constantly preaching angles and anticipation are a huge factor in becoming a great sports photographer versus a picture taker on the side lines.
I had a client ask me to get some shots of their son playing football in Monroe, Ohio recently.
Trevor Pittman, seen in this shot, started the game for the Eaton Eagle at Quarterback.
While working the sidelines and watching where the holes had a tendency to open up on the line, I positioned myself in his potential passing lane on a 3rd and long situation, and was rewarded with this capture.
His Mom told me, upon seeing the picture, that it was his first and only passing attempt, to date, of his early career.
I feel that God blesses me with an ability to somehow, always be in the right place at the right time.
I was looking at some of my, so-called, local competitions web offerings recently on their site, and noticed a particular sport, that had something like 30 galleries and more that 5000 photos.
While some of the photographs were outstanding, they were like Easter eggs, hidden in a corn field, among countless unedited photos of the athlete in awkward body positions, either facing the camera or not, sometimes “floating” in air, with not subject matter, etc….
The sad part is, this individual could actually be a pretty good photographer if they understood this simple concept.When your moto drive is snapping off 8 frames a second, you’re going to get some show stoppers in the 8-900 shots you shoot at a game. The secret is, not to bury them in the site with the 700 bad ones.
A $5000 camera and a $6000 lens, will get smoked every time by a parent with a Nikon D90 and a kit lens, that does understand that concept.
I saw a photographer for the Hamilton Journal News in Hamilton, Ohio, shooting Little League tournament photography with a very high end Canon and a 400m 2.8 lens recently and most every shot they presented for game coverage was sub par and no better than some of the parents pictures from the sidelines with cameras from Best Buy.
One of the other Proverbs that I often recite is “Thou shalt protect thy brand and thy brand image”
As a sports photographer, if you want to continually get calls for high paying gigs and be able to charge premium prices, you have to understand marketing and how an audience thinks.
We are a microwave society today. A few years ago, a successful site on internet, subscribed to something called a “3 Click Rule”, that essentially stated, “If a visitor to your web site can’t find what they are looking for in 3 clicks, they bounce off the site.
If you’re shooting a game of any sport and you “dump” 144 photos on the site in a gallery, with a good portion of the photos, unflattering to the subject or awkward looking, you’re going to cheapen your brand and never really be able to command top dollar for your work. You’re also going to lose a lot of potential customers that grow weary in searching for the Sports Illustrated shot of their son or Daughter.
2011 Eaton Little League Baseball Highlight Video. Photos by Cincinnati and Dayton Sports Photographer Vincent Rush of Cincinnati Sports Photography
“Our Summer Song” by Forever the Sickest Kids
“We are the World Tonight” by an Unidentified Artist and originally played in ESPN’s 2011 Little League World Series Highlight video (My wife thinks it may be the lead singer for The News Boys)
However, the only information I have is
BlueprintMusicProd & Frank Giaramita
All but a few action photos were shot by Vince Rush in Eaton, Ohio, during the 2011 Little League season.
Now that the sun has set on the 2011 Eaton Little League season, and the kids are either on to football, soccer or Fall baseball, I am going through my files and picking out some of my favorite action photos from the season.
There is no pattern or theme to what I post, other than to keep fresh content on my web pages, for the purpose of SEO, or Search Engine Optimization.
From the web site of Cincinnati Ohio Professional Sports Photographer Vincent Rush of Ohio Sports Photography, Cincinnati Action Photo and Team Pictures as well as Dayton Ohio Sports Photography and Cincinnati Portraits, Event Photo Coverage. Covering Baseball, Little League, Pee Wee Football, High school sports, Cincinnati Reds, MLB, NFL and University of Cincinnati. Vince Rush Photography and Monroe Hornets Action Sports Photography is Located in Monroe Ohio.
Little League Sports Photography by Dayton Sports Photographer Vincent Rush of Cincinnati Sports Photography. This sports photograph was shot in Englewood, Ohio at Centennial Park as Eaton was playing Hamilton West Side Little League. The picture is a composite of two separate images and an enhanced contrast to create the effect.
Little League Sports Action Photograph of Eaton Ohio Little Leaguer, by Vincent Rush of Cincinnati Sports Photography
• The first thing I look at is the background. Whatever the action is, the background will complete the picture. I don’t want a busy background—a lot of fences or light glaring off a fence. A lot of people in the stands are okay, but I don’t want one person walking by or just standing around. Some sports are good with the bench as background, like lacrosse or football, with coaches and players behind the action. Shooting Little League is trickier. The field is an odd shape, and I try to crop out distractions. I shoot the batter so the bench is in the background as opposed to two parents and otherwise empty aluminum stands reflecting light. The rule of thumb: real clean or real real.
• The first lens in my kit is the 70-200mm zoom lens [AF-S VR Zoom-NIKKOR 70-200mm f/2.8G IF-ED]. Very sharp, very fast, and if I have to shoot through a fence, I shoot wide open and the fence won’t even show. It also offers me a lot of flexibility in composing; too tight, I zoom out, too loose, zoom in. My next lens is the 200-400mm [AF-S VR Zoom-NIKKOR 200-400mm f/4G IF-ED]; fabulous for any sport, just perfect.
• I’m shooting D3 right now almost exclusively. I also have a D700 and a D300. Focusing is quick on all, but the D3 is a little faster in its burst. But I suggest you don’t get caught up in shooting sequences. In reality the high point of action is really one or two frames, especially in sports where a ball is struck. The ball is only going to be in there for one frame, and if a kid is fielding the ball, the ball’s only there for three frames. Generally, five frames per second is fast enough.
• The truth is that professional sports are almost easier to shoot. The younger the kids, the less you can anticipate—they don’t have a sense of timing like the pros or older kids; the young kids are all a little bit off the timing. Be prepared.
Posted by Monroe Ohio photographer Vincent Rush, Cincinnati Sports Photography and Dayton Sports Photography of Monroe Ohio. Vince Rush can be contacted by phone at (877) 858-6295 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://CincinnatiSportsPhotography.com Check out my about.me profile!