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May 2023
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BTS of a shoot for Triple Crown Feed in 2021
Dear First name / Friend,
Happy May Day! When you were a kid, did you make paper baskets and put flowers in them and leave them at strangers' doors? Is that even still a thing anymore? 🧺💐
I'm going to get right into the meat of this newsletter, because I have a lot to share with you today! 
In 2009, I did my first commercial photoshoot for a major feed brand, and afterward, I decided commercial photography wasn't for me.
Why? My photography skills and ability to work in a collaborative setting needed to be more mature. I was happy focusing on equestrian portraiture, so I leaned into my strength.
Fast forward seven years later, and another major brand approached me about a photo shoot. I now had seven more years of experience, and I was ready to try it again.
I wasn't instantly successful at it, but now another seven years later, my client service business is entirely focused on Commercial and Branding photography and video, and I have worked with many of the biggest brand names in the equine industry.
The number one question I get from other photographers dipping a toe in Commercial photography is, how do I price this?
Today I hope to shed some light on this for you!

Why Commercial and Portrait Photography Pricing are different and how you should price them.

A mistake many photographers make when dipping a toe in commercial work is underpricing.
A big reason WHY I'm sharing this information for free today is that I am seeing a rapid decline in the value of photography by brands and companies, and it's primarily because photographers don't understand how to price their work correctly.
The value of your work for a commercial client is different from a portrait client. When working for a portrait client, the value in the work you do for them is the prints and products they can enjoy now and in the future to remember the beautiful bond they shared with their animals.
The value of photography for commercial clients is marketing. This means you will only be delivering digital files, and your price needs to include your time, talent, and the value of those files for your client.
Your professional images will help a company market more effectively and grow its client base. So your client will ideally be more profitable because they hired you as a photographer.
It makes sense that your fees would be higher for commercial photography than for portrait photography.
Pricing for commercial photography should also be value-based. You wouldn't price photography for a local trainer the same as a national brand because those images don't hold the same value. The larger the company, the more they will gain from using your images.
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When I work with larger commercial clients, I often shoot straight to an iPad, where the creative or art director for the shoot is giving me real-time feedback on my images.
Large commercial shoots also require a lot of time, technical skill, and the ability to work as part of a larger creative team. These things have taken me 14 years to gain and are why I feel confident as a commercial photographer.
Here are some average price ranges for different types of commercial shoots:
  • Small local business: $1500-$3000
  • Medium local or national business: $2500-$10,000
  • Large National Brand: $6000 and up!
I don't recommend jumping right into working with a big brand if you've never done this type of photography before. Start by working with local equine businesses. Gain confidence and build a portfolio so you can start working your way towards larger clients and not lose confidence by getting in over your head like I did in 2009.
My favorite resource to recommend to photographers wanting to start doing branding or commercial photography is The Image Crafters. They offer articles and courses on working with large and small companies.
If you find yourself needing to price a branding or commercial photo shoot and feel like this: 😳🤔🫣😩, know I'm a Zoom call away and happy to help you through private 1:1 coaching.



New Podcast guest episode where I spill my guts about imposter syndrome!

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I had a SUPER FUN conversation with Nicole Bagely of Hair of the Dog Academy recently, where we confessed our own struggles with Imposter Syndrome, living by your values, how our brains sometimes go haywire at a session, and more!


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🫣 It's a little embarrassing how poorly I anticipated the amount of time it would take to get this app launched through the Apple's App Store and the Google Play store. I just want my baby to go out into the world and help you all feel more confident at your sessions!
But good things come to those who wait. Speaking of waiting, if you want to be the very first to know, sign up here:


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📘 Read
This was a second read for me, the first was quite a few years ago! But I attended a virtual workshop this month on personal projects and the instructor talked about the book several times, so I purchased the audio version and OMG, I forgot how inspiring it is! If you want to live an authentic, magical, messy, wonderful creative life, PLEASE READ THIS BOOK! 
2023 State of Photography: Business Isn’t Great and Use of AI is Going Up
I hate to be a Debbie Downer, but I'm a realist. I'll be sharing more soon about some new thoughts about AI, but for now, this is an interesting summary of a survey conducted by Zenfolio about the photography industry. The reason I share this isn't to discourage you, but to help you keep your eyes open and your finger on the pulse of what is happening industry-wide.
🎧 Listen
Lean into what makes you different The Futur with Chris Do. A great podcast episode about differentiation and marketing. I bookmarked it to listen again and take notes!
The Challenges of Renovating a (Business) House while Living in It from Free Time with Jenny Blake. If you are thinking about shifting directions in your business, you will love this episode. I have made shifts like this several times in my business and her advice is solid. I also could relate to living in a house while renovating! It's totally worth it, but also very stressful. 😁


I sincerely hope you are enjoying the Pegasus Journal. If you know of another photographer you think might benefit from these emails, would you consider sharing it email with them? Thank you!


And, as always, if there's anything I can do to help you grow as a photographer, please reach out by hitting reply to this email. 😊


Until next time…




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