Advice and help on becoming a world class photographer by Sports Photographer Vince Rush

Posts tagged “Sports Photography

I am not in the “Photography Business”!

Monroe Hornets High School Baseball photos by Sports Photographer Vincent Rush of Cincinnati Sports Photography and Dayton Sports Photographers. Vincent Rush is an award winning published sports photographer based out of Monroe Ohio

Monroe Hornets High School Baseball photos by Sports Photographer Vincent Rush of Cincinnati Sports Photography and Dayton Sports Photographers. Vincent Rush is an award winning published sports photographer based out of Monroe Ohio

“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!

Vincent Rush

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You Only Get One Shot! That’s Why You Hire a Professional Photographer.

Donnie Nicodemus drives to the basket as Mom stand and cheers in the background, during SWBL Championship game.

Donnie Nicodemus drives to the basket as Mom stand and cheers in the background, during SWBL Championship game.

 

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.

VCR_0106

 

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 vrush@rushintl.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.

 

 

 


High School Freshman Celina King scores 1000th Point!

Image

a King, a Freshman at Cincinnati Christian, drive past a Cincinnati Christian Schools defender and scores her 1000th point on January 26th, 2013. 

 


Celina has actually been a starting Varsity point guard in High School since she was 12.
While previously at private Christian Schools, including Spring Valley Academy in Dayton, she is now in her first year at an OHSSA sanctioned school.

More amazing than her basketball skills, is the amount of books that she had read, by the time she was 12, that deal with having a PMA, Winning and going after your goals. Celina is one of the most well balanced and humble kids that I have ever met and is a little Pistol Pete Maravich on the court.
As a Cincinnati Sports Photographer, I met Celina and her family in 2010 and was blown away by her personality, sense of humility, maturity level and work ethic.
I spoke to an ESPN editor at a holiday tournament the first time I was hired to come photograph her and was told by a gentlemen named Mark Lewis of ESPN Hoop Girls at the time, that there are lots of kids with incredible unique abilities, but there are probably only 4 or 5 kids like a Celina King.

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 vrush@rushintl.com or visit http://CincinnatiSportsPhotography.com

 


I’m An Incredible, Amazing Photographer!

“Protect this House” by Cincinnati, Ohio Sports Photographer Vincent Rush of Cincinnati Sports Photography

By Vincent Rush, Ohio Sports Photographer

Ok, not really!

I was just echoing the most overused quote on Facebook, regarding photographers.

It’s school season and more specifically “Senior Portrait” season and among my very close and personal 1400+  Facebook friends, I am constantly seeing photos posted, either great, good, average or just plain poor, with someone’s name and the word “Photography” attached to it.

Then of course the subject or parent goes on to describe what an “Amazing Photographer” said individual is.

As a photographer myself, I am always amazed at some of the pictures that aspiring “photogs” allow to be posted in an effort to establish their brand and style.

In today’s world of photography, with camera technology and lighting techniques along with a basic understanding of Photoshop or other editing software, anyone can take acceptable quality portraits and produce a picture that any Mother would love.

I have never claimed to be anything special, other than an exceptional sports action photographer. I know my niche and what I’m good at.

Every photographer should take inventory and know what their true talent is…as well as what it’s not!

And even at that, I know the real secret to being a “Great Photographer” is in knowing what to delete and what to share with the world.

When I began building my brand, which is more important than building a business because without the brand, the business can’t survive, I was very protective about what I shared with the public.

That discretion allowed me to build my value and identity as a sports photographer.

Every “Photographer” I see on Facebook, has a few great shots that I myself wished that I had shot. However, I often see those pictures sandwiched in between mediocre snap shots that anyone with a “Point and Shoot” could have captured.

I am also seeing, in my opinion, waaaaay too many snap shots posted with a watermark identifying the picture as property of, “XYZ Photography”.

Is everyone with a camera today a professional?

I can however, also appreciate anyone trying to build a little business and produce additional income in today’s economic climates.

I admit, I had no traction in 2006, when I was given a Nikon D2x, as a gift and began shooting for the first time since 1990.

There was also no Facebook or social media back then, so I cannot say that I would have not taken the same route.

But even back in the day, I was very careful about what kind of pictures I exposed on my website and handed out at ball games.

Two good examples of what not to do come to mind;

I have a photographer friend that shoots a lot of low budget weddings and senior portraits.

Now my friend has really improved on their skill and mastery of lighting over the past couple of years and is really starting to do some outstanding work.

However, my friend also keeps damaging their “Brand” by publicizing some really, how do I phrase this…gnarly pics. By gnarly I am implying…non attractive photos of things like, overweight brides in unflattering dresses with even more unflattering tattoos, unless you’re a big fan of “Honey Boo Boo Child”

They are wedding pictures and Senior photos that may be only attractive to the Mothers of the photographed…if you know what I mean.

It’s OK to shoot those, and if your client is happy, that is all that really matters. However,  photographer should use a fair amount of discretion on what to “Share with the World”!

There is a reason Victoria’s Secret does not put the women who actually buy their outfits in their catalogs, much in the same way Canali or Armani would not put ME in theirs!

Another example is a local sports photography business, consisting of two guys in my community.

They will cover a sporting event for football or baseball and while they capture some great images, they then dump 400 pictures from the game on their Smug Mug site, forcing a parent to have to sift through to find a photo worth paying $15-20.00 for.

I have had good success carving out a niche to where I rarely do general game coverage anymore.

Most of my business is now “client shoots”, where a parent hires me to come and cover their kid or their team for an entire game.

The price for these events I do range anywhere from $300-$400.00.

I then present the client with a CD of edited…I REPEAT…..EDITED photos and keep the total to between 60-80 shots.

I have a website at http://CincinnatiSportsPhotography.com that has numerous examples of sports photography and illustrates what I am talking about.

I also get asked every year to do a handful of senior portraits for $500, of which I provide 4 poses, on location, and present a CD to the parents. I typically do about 5 a year.

I asked one of my friends recently, what they charge for the same thing and twice as much work, when it came to senior portraits.

While I never got a clear answer, I assume it was around $250-$300, forcing them to shoot 8.3 jobs compared to my 5.

This friend commented that is was hard to get that kind of money in a small town. While I noted that I lived in a smaller town, I pointed out that it’s not the size of the town, but rather it’s the perceived value of the service rendered. That value has been diminished, not because they are not talented, but because they are not particular about what they post as their calling cards.

So determine, what you are worth and what to you want your value to be perceived as? They are in fact two different things.

By the way, two GREAT sports photographers that I admire in Sports Photography is a guy by the name of Rick Lohre @ http://ricklohre.com and Barb Trimble @ http://trimphotoandvideo.com/

And two Cincinnati photographers that I really like in portrait photography are Moon Beam Studios @

http://www.moonbeamstudios.co/seniors.php and JMM Photography @ http://jmmphotography.us/

Happy Shooting! Vincent Rush, Cincinnati sports Photography


No Joy In Mudville….Joey Votto Out 3-4 Weeks!

Joey Votto and Cincinnati Reds Photograph by Cincinnati Sports Photographer Vincent Rush

 

CINCINNATI (AP) Reds first baseman Joey Votto will have surgery to repair torn cartilage in his left knee, sidelining him for three to four weeks.
The 2010 National League MVP hurt the knee in late June but kept playing. He had a medical exam Monday evening that detected the injury.
Votto was out of the starting lineup against Arizona on Monday night, getting a day of rest and a chance to have the knee checked. He went hitless in his first two games back from another All-Star appearance, then had a single and a double during a 4-2 win over St. Louis on Sunday night that pushed the Reds into sole possession of first place in the NL Central.
Votto leads the NL in doubles, walks and extra-base hits, batting .342.

Joey Votto of the Cincinnati Reds by Sports Photographer Vincent Rush

Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/baseball/mlb/07/16/votto-reds-surgery.ap/index.html#ixzz20pmNtwC8

 

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 vrush@rushintl.com or visit http://cincinnatiSPORTSphotography.com Check out my about.me profile!

 


Great American Ball Park


Sports Photography Trends: Summer – The Best Time For Booking High School Sports!

 

RIGHT NOW is the BEST TIME to book high school sports…do you have your marketing kits ready?  The grads have thrown their hats in the air, and the coaches are taking a sigh of relief, FOR THE MOMENT.
Many schools require staff and personnel to work for a week, or several days, past the last day of the classes for students, so NOW is the time to act!  These couple of weeks following classes are PRIME TIME for speaking with any high school coach.  During these weeks most coaches are more accessible and more willing to meet – and listen – to what you have to offer.
Take advantage of this calm time, as a lot of coaches are hard to locate during the school year.  When they are busy it is tricky to find a “best time” to speak with them, and finding the “best time” that they are willing to listen can be even trickier!  Very often they are busy, and will only give you a few minutes of their time, if that.  You want to approach them at a time when they have more time to listen to you.
Plan ahead.  Do you have your marketing kits together and ready to go?  Be sure to have samples of unique products that will make you stand out among your competitors.  Have a calendar with you for scheduling.  Have testimonial letters from other schools and coaches.  Be prepared to leave detailed information with the coach/decision maker so they can refer back to what you discussed.
One HUGE advantage to approaching school coaches now is that more than likely there areMANY coaches there at the same time.  Once you’re in the school, track down other coaches of other sports.  Now is also the best time to show up unannounced and visit with as many coaches as possible.  Make the most of YOUR time and the coaches availability.  Don’t miss these lucrative couple of weeks…the BEST TIME FOR BOOKING SCHOOL SPORTS!

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 vrush@rushintl.com or visit http://CincinnatiSportsPhotography.com Check out my about.me profile!


Indian Hill Lacrosse vs. Summit Country Day

Ohio Sports Photography and Dayton Sports Photographer


2011 Little League Highlight Video


You’re Charging Too Much For Your Photography!!!!

Little League Sports Photography by Sports Photographer  Vincent Rush of  Ohio

Batters Eye by Award Winning Sports Photographer Vincent Rush of Dayton Sports Photographers

Well not really – but I needed a catchy headline. Chances are you are charging too little. Let me explain.

(Please note this post is written from the perspective of a professional photographer. If you want to do photography for charity or use it to provide social outreach or pure art, this post may not be something you’ll care to read. Thank you.)

Every time – every single time – someone says – “Your price is too high,” it means that you have the wrong prospect. You don’t have the wrong product or price. You have the wrong prospect.
A man with $2000 in his pocket out to buy a car walks into a Jaguar dealership, sees a lovely XJL sedan and says, “I like that. How much is it?” The salesman replies, “$120,000 sir.” The man says, “That’s too much.” Is it? Obviously the problem here is not that the Jaguar isn’t a nice car or that it costs too much. The problem is that the man simply can’t afford a car in this price range. He’s not the right prospect. There will never be a meeting of the minds here.

So this illustrates part one of this problem. Wrong prospect always leads to no sale.

What is the solution? Is the solution to sell a different product or reduce the price? Absolutely not. The solution is to find the person who can afford that price and wants that product.

Photographers often charge too little because they have an “opinion” based on their own experience about what the market will stand for. But that’s the core problem. The photographer isn’t the buyer. The photographer doesn’t necessarily represent the market. You should be aiming higher than your own income bracket if you want to grow your business so find clients who CAN afford your higher prices and sell to them.

Most often it’s your opinion that is the problem. It’s not the price. It’s not the product. It’s your opinion about what the market will stand for.

Let me give you another example. If you live in a world where the average income is $50,000 a year, you probably haven’t considered adding a Rolls-Royce Phantom to your garage. This may lead you to believe that since you can’t afford it, nobody can. But that’s wrong-headed thinking. Want proof? Rolls-Royce sells a model called the Phantom. It’s $380,000. Now they also sell a special edition of the Phantom called the “Year of the Dragon” edition. That version of the car costs $1.2 million. Guess what. They completely sold out of those cars – worldwide – in 60 days. So while you may not be able to afford that car, it doesn’t mean someone else can’t.

There are people in this world – in fact in your neighborhood – who can write $100,000 checks without even asking their spouse for permission. There’s plenty of money around, even in a bad economy. You just have to find it.

So study demographics. Which zip code in your area is the most affluent? Where are the country clubs? These are the places where your prospects for high-end photography exist.

Not everyone cares about making a great deal of money in their photography business. Some prefer the social nature of the job or the artistic nature of the job. For them, this isn’t going to resonate. But for those of you who would like to make more money, start thinking about finding the RIGHT prospects – the ones who can value and afford what you do.

An article by Scott Bourne posted on Twitter on Feb 6th, 2012

Re-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 vrush@rushintl.com or visit http://CincinnatiSportsPhotography.com Check out my about.me profile!