does paying money makes the picture better ?????

Discussion in 'Sports' started by john_valjean, Mar 4, 2014.

  1. Hello all,
    I think my ego is hurt a bit. My kids play hockey and I take pictures of their games, I make sure to take pictures of the whole team and players and I always share with parents. Never one person said thanks. OK fine. last week we went to a tournament, and there was couple of guys with cameras that showed up to each game and took bunch of pictures, loaded them on PC with touchscreen displays for parents to see right after the game. The pictures sucked, some are blurry, some our of focus, some need to be cropped etc. Honestly my pictures are 200% better, modesty apart. Parents got so excited and started to ask if the team wants to buy these pictures at ridiculous prices, some of them in fact did.

    I was really hurt, I mean here I am sharing awesome shots of the kids for free, but parents are getting excited for bad pictures and they are paying for them????

    So if I charge them for my pictures, then my pictures would be better ????
  2. :D

    Been there done that, bought the tshirt....

    The biggest mistake is to give them away in the first place... They now see this as being "normal".
    Posting them on facebook...? cool they can copy them - even with a watermark on it... they will crop around it - You will have a heartattack when a mom tells you what I've heard dozens of times.... "how can I remove this from the photo - it looks ugly when I print it".

    People would rather give their money to a stranger, rather than giving you money.... why should they pay you? It doesn't cost anything to take photos now a day.... and you are at the game anyway for your son.... there is no salary involved, unlike that company that takes photos during the tournament - they need staff, expensive cameras, computers and big fancy printers to do all of this on-site....

    (excuse the sarcasm)
  3. A group of parents is different from a pair of parents.
    One says some good of the picture, and then another agrees, and then the snow ball starts to roll.
    Within five minutes, the picture becomes "excellent".
    Then one buys one for their kid, the others must buy some for theirs, too.
  4. It's a snowball effect. I see people selling substandard stuff at events all the time. One kid gets it then they all have to have it.
    Bottom line - don't give your work away.
  5. [[I was really hurt, I mean here I am sharing awesome shots of the kids for free, but parents are getting excited for bad pictures and they are paying for them????]]
    I made a meal for my friends. They were satisfied. A few days later some of those friends went to a fast food restaurant for lunch where they paid money for inferior food. Had I known they pay someone for food I should have charged them for the meal I had prepared, right?

    If you started taking and sharing pictures of the team in order to make money, giving away the photos is not a great move. If you shared the photos out of generosity, then why are you upset that someone else is making money?
    Perhaps the best course of action is to stop photographing other people's kids and just concentrate on your own.
  6. @Rob, i think you missed the point of my post, and I will use your example, you made a great meal for your friends, they came and ate and left and did not even say thank you, or wow that was a good meal. then they take you to a fast food place and are in awe of the sight of the inferior food.
    I was not in this to make money, and I would never take money from my kid's friends parents for something like this. I am hurt because it would be nice to say to someone thank you for giving you something superior to what you love to get in sub quality and pay for it.
  7. Wow, I am sorry your fellow sports parents are so ungrateful. That has to hurt.
    I have had the opposite experience. I have been photographing my son's baseball and basketball teams for over 5 years and I have gotten nothing but gratitude from the parents.
    For basketball, I photograph about half the games and send out 8 to 12 pictures of each player per game. I get thank you notes from all the parents and some of the players and usually some sort of gift at the end of the season. Usually a gift card to Ritz Camera.
    For baseball, every parent is required to volunteer to be responsible for one of about 10 or 12 different tasks throughout the season in an effort to control expenses. I always volunteer to be the team photographer. I photograph every game including tournaments and send out pictures to all the families. Usually 10 to 15 photos per player per game. The parents are extremely grateful. I have gotten many thank you emails and I always get a very nice gift at the end of the season. I got an iPad mini last year.
    I tell my story not to brag, but to let you know that not all sports parents are ungrateful and a lot of them understand that good pictures take hard work and a lot of time. And a lot of people understand that paying for a picture does not make it better. I agree with the statement made earlier. If they are not going to be appreciative of your hard work, don't photograph the team. Just photograph your child. Let the other parents pay for someone else's pictures if they want to.
  8. [[@Rob, i think you missed the point of my post,]
    No, I did not miss the point of your post, John. I think you've missed the point of mine. I don't think you are being honest with yourself.
    When you truly give a gift to someone you are not owed anything. Period. If you think you are owed praise or some other ego stroke, then you are not giving a gift. Then it is about payment even if it is not about money.
    [[I would never take money from my kid's friends parents for something like this]]
    Then why do you care so much what they do with their money?
  9. Hi John -
    It's nice of you to contribute your photography skills to the team and other parents. As a youth sports volunteer myself (usually as a coach), I've had similar experiences with many parents not being as thankful as you would expect for your work.
    One insight here – they likely don't see you as a professional photographer because you're always around taking photos of your kid and they think it's only a hobby. You've also opened the gate to giving away free photos, so that may be something difficult to overcome in the immediate future. Nobody really realizes how much you've spent in time and on the hundreds or thousands of dollars on gear to get the photos. It's not just you – so many people think photos should be free, in part because so many people have given away free photos in the past.
    What I would suggest doing (and what I've done myself) is to go ahead and photograph the games, trying to get photos of each player, action shots, candids, etc. Take the photos home and build your library of photos, but don't send them to the parents. Select only the very best ones from each game, then go to your next game and get shots of the players you missed and more action shots. Select the absolute best from that game, and continue onwards. You'll need to set some photos aside that you probably like, but if they're out focus or if you missed the shot, you don't want to share it. Your final folder should have your best work in it.
    At the team dinner or end of season celebration, share some of your greatest photos in print or on an iPad. You could give a single photo to each family if you like, then direct them to your website where they can view all the photos and order those photos and a selection of others you've taken over the season. (You can easily set up a website where people can order photos from and other similar sites. You set the prices, they order, Smugmug prints and delivers the photos, and you get your cut).
    Doing it this way, people will see you as a professional photographer because:
    1. The photos they see are all of professional quality
    2. You're charging for your work, and
    3. You're presenting yourself as a business
    Don't be offended if people don't swamp your site and buy all your photos – in reality, you might sell only a few. But to establish yourself as a pro and get the respect the other photographers are getting you'll need to take a different approach. And next season they'll know that you're the team's professional photographer!
  10. I think there is an old saying about nobody being a prophet in his own backyard. I have seen a sort of panic in people when they think a photo of their Little Johnnie will disappear if they don't pay big bucks for it right now. I have seen photo salesmen take a lighted cigarette to color slides of little Johnnie (and burn a hole in the slide) when Mom asks what will happen to the color slides she does not buy. (I have been in some big towns and heard me some big talk, as the old blues song goes. And dealt with some real rats.)
    This modern society seems to put a dollar sign on everything and without it, well, it must be worthless. If you are going to give away your work, you will be kicked in the head.
    How many people really appreciate a teacher who buys necessary classroom items out of her/his own pocket? How many people really appreciate firefighters and all the little people who keep society working? A mere photographer is way down the list -- or have you not noticed? Anybody can take some sort of photograph today. And if the photo is blurred and out of focus and looks stupid, well it's a priceless picture of Little Johnnie the Little Prince, after all.
    The grass is greener on the other side of the hill and all the photographers over there are real whizkids. Van Gogh send dozens of his paintings to his mom and she used them to fix the holes in her back fence.
    Local boys don't get no respect.
  11. Don't overlook the value of seeing the images at the event. When people are in the moment, the pictures are worth more. Also, the opportunity to acquire the pictures is limited. When they leave, these pictures will no longer be available. (You are always around.) This is the same way amusement parks sell crappy pictures of people on rides right after the ride is finished.
  12. You missed the point. Those guys were selling photos because people could get the photo IN THEIR HAND, RIGHT THEN. Those photos were bought with disposable income, (Meaning people brought that money to the game with the intent on spending it there. I found this out from my wife. She asked me for some money one day when she was going to one of my son's basketball game. She said someone might be selling photos and she wanted to get some. I was stunned because I would go to the games and take photos. "What about the ones that I took," I asked. "Oh, yours are in the computer, they will have someone actually giving them out."
    Lesson learned.
  13. I can understand your feelings. But the main thing is that their parents are not professional photographers and they really don't know the major points of photography. So don't think so much about this.keep it up.
  14. Tuff lesson. Most people don't know a good photo from a bad photo. What they do know is weather or not they like the photo's they see. I do photo's at pointing dog field trials. First year I gave away 300+ 4x6 prints but for me it was a learning deal. People offered to pay but I wouldn't take the money, I told them this was my learning year, after that I'd charge for them. I also make frame's for them and carry a printer along to print on the spot. I don't do this for the money, but rather ask enough to pay my expenses and it cover's that and a bit more. If I had been going to do it as a business, I would not have given anything away. If you want to keep things you do fun, don't make a business of it. Someone want's a photo tell them they have to pay for the paper and ink. If they don't want to, their loss. Is it a business or a hobby? I keep work out of my life now, I retired 8 yrs ago!

Share This Page