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Inside the Home Studio

Lesson 13 of 31

Five Mistakes Photographers Make

Tony Corbell

Inside the Home Studio

Tony Corbell

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Lesson Info

13. Five Mistakes Photographers Make


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1 Class Introduction Duration:04:07
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Lesson Info

Five Mistakes Photographers Make

let's talk about this this is a little concept I want to just kind of hit for a second this is um I read it online article recently uh that had that title in it it was five mistakes photographers making that change some things up a little bit based on some of things that I've heard and seen over the years but when it comes to managing and and monitoring and over overseeing the business aspect of what you do here's some areas that we might be able to do a little bit better in as it relates to all of the stuff that we've been talking about first and foremost is equipment purses everybody seems to think that every new camera model that comes out you got to go buy it or every other camera new update but you kind of don't want to be three behind because that's not what everybody else does and they're gonna look now the other friends of yours will look down on me if you're shooting you know the mark this one instead of the mark that one or or the d this one instead of the d that whatever it ...

might be do not get sucked into that you guys the quality of the digital cameras today are fantastic the quality of them five years ago was fantastic five years ago we were making thirty by forties and forty by sixties and had no noise issues and we have beautiful quality and no matter how enticing they make the new ones sound do we really have tohave the size seriously some of my most beautiful sixteen by twenty prints were made on one meg versions of the files you can do it you can make great prince if you have a great file to start with you can make gorgeous prince that big they don't fall apart like you might think they might well it's it's never going to go that big really well then maybe you're doing it wrong in photo shop but the files can handle the quality don't get caught up into thinking you have to buy everything new that comes out and the same thing applies to lenses and bodies it applies to all the tools of your craft and it also implies toe lighting equipment too don let me ask you a question I don't know if your mic is live or not but what I want to talk a little bit just real quickly about your lighting okay but you have to come over here on the carpet I know sharks sharks there are sharks out there that I saw you got one light that you used to like me with last night there's a brand new life right hottest thing on the market but also saw in one of your cubbies some lights that were twenty years old forty or fifty years forty or fifty years dina like diego for and they weren't sweetie try nato fives yeah yeah they're all great still working flesh tube seemed to last almost forever and that's the thing is the last to the last forever they don't shift color they really don't give a shit as long as that gas is still sealed inside bet you know that tube zien onze gast it's the old soft boxes they turn yellow soft boxes will age that front skin will yellow and it will fade great giving a soft box but use the old lights don't have to buy new stuff all the time you don't know is that what do you think is the number one most important thing that you update regularly software maybe that's it that's exactly what I was gonna say credits software it's not the equipment so one of the biggest five mistakes that I see photographers make is spending too much money on equipment persons thanks sure e love having down here just he's just the best he's such a weirdo he's just like me we're all we're all pretty we're all knucklehead that's right uh so equipment parts is just pay close attention to what you're doing make sure that you're doing the right thing and make sure you're spending money in the right area don't go buy a new camera and a new lens because you think you had to have it and then tell me that you can't afford to market your new business you gotta be able to market your business being under insured a lot of people and are underinsured and being under insured is not a good thing being over insured uh it's probably not a good thing either because you're probably paying a lot for it but but be appropriately insured for what you need and that means not just for equipment that means your health insurance that means everything uh and I think we ought to have the little just one second discussion about liability insurance er in most public places where you might work it's pretty much required that you have at least a one million dollar liability pausing in some cities it's too that covers you in the event of anything going wrong like some poor four year old pulling your tripod over and hit himself in the head and getting hurt that happens that's a reality than it happens uh you've got to make sure you're protected but they will take everything you own if there's a suit so when I talked about the other day about separating your finances of your personal world from your business world I think you should consider llc ease and I think you should consider incorporating I think you should consider all those things to protect you for from from devastation which would devastate you and your family and your business so you really have to pay attention to that stuff I think it's really important that we do so that's that's kind of a big one the next one I think and this is pretty big too yeah don't forget separate him find a way to separate him don't have to talk about that anymore do have kind of beat that death this's our question and we just got over the in the chat room she doesn't know where to start our pricing and I think that you have to go back and start looking locally talk to your community see what everybody's doing um figure out where you fit in the overall chain of command it is difficult when there's not a good supportive professional association in your community but there's always going to be a on amateur association say is a government photo society of america they everywhere there's I'll guarantee and within one hundred miles of where we're all sitting right now I'll bet you there's five hundred members of psa it's it is a it's a it's sort of an amateur photographers club but there's a lot of smart people in there but also check out the p p of a groups and their state associations as well as the locals the seattle and the washington state p p of a association has a great association appearing that appear in the northwest I've spoken of their conferences before they bring in photographers from all over the world to speak and to teach at their annual events so it's a pretty good place to learn and ask questions um and then this is this is one that we really are auto spend some talking talking time about this spending too much time on the wrong social media for example for those of you that are doing high school senior work high school seniors aren't on facebook anymore they left they left two years ago why'd they leave because her mom's and dad's got on facebook kids left where'd they go they want to instagram first and now where are the snapchat and we all know what's happening there right there's some issues there there's some problems there's a lot of things that that well it supposed to disappear after such and such time really did you read the fine print there we just have to make sure that we all pay attention to what's going on on the world of social media and our business I know for example that I'm I'm terrible at keeping up with anything on instagram I just never do it I'm getting much much much it's better on twitter I am considerably better on facebook and then I'm blocked posting once a week so I'm trying to stay as active as I can but as we all have busy lives well we all have busy lives but I know that there are things that we can do to not just help make your clients feel that they made the right choice and give them confidence but it also updates them on what you're up to and it gives them when they start talking about you to somebody else that somebody else can then say well let me just see what she's up to oh she does have well she's got two thousand followers wow she's got three thousand friends wow that's there's thirst stuff going on there you're you're commercially viable if you're in that world if you're not you're not very commercially viable I know associations that I've been approached buy them to give them ideas for photographers to speak a different events because I kind of know a lot of photographers hey do you think so and so would be very good what about so and so oh I know he didn't have very many followers in such and such if if if you're a photographer that wants to speak and do what I'm doing and do teaching and things like this if you don't have a social presence you're not going to get a call at all and that means it's probably the same thing for your business and your local community if you don't have any president's there you're not gonna get a call something to be thinking about think about think about those uh you know there's apse that you can get now and that you can sell to or offer to your clients especially your high school senior clients where you can give them their own private downloadable um portfolio of their sessions that they can download to their phones you deliver that kind of stuff as a service a community service as a hey you know what when you get when you get this package or this collection or whatever I'm just going to give you a free app with all your pictures on it's gonna be it and at that you can show everybody in size on your phone pretty brilliant stuff there's a lot of that kind of stuff that's going on out there I think the digital world has brought us the opportunity to a lot of things a lot of a lot of good things not a really good things so give that some consideration um you know I started this whole conversation a little bit with education about an hour ago and there was a couple of things about that that I want to get back to we don't talk enough about we talk a lot about photo education but we do honestly have to make sure that there is the software education that goes along with it there is software available for you as a portrait photographer that you may not be aware of that can help you sell your sessions that can help you organize your files that can organize your clientele lists that can become your everything go to folder for your business and manage your business and appropriate put things in the right categories so that went the end of the year you can pull up your taxes and everything's done right there software for all that kind of stuff we have to know that we have to learn that stuff there's a lot of those things that are available and if we aren't if we're not active with associations and for not acted with other photographers and other photography groups we're going to miss all of that and all of this is especially important if you're in a small home studio I think all of this is important everything we've been talking about in the last hour yes ma'am grab the microphone could you talk a little bit more about how you sell in your in person appointments are you a hard sell or soft sell ir do you have any techniques for tips that you can give to the rest of us yeah I can tell you I can tell you that um most of my work now is commercial I'm not I'm not doing day to day business selling portrait to people to put on their walls most of the portrait our shooter used as a commercial application so uh so the way I priced my that kind of work is it's a day rate or it's a bid and I'm usually develop delivering to my client not a portrait toe hang but a file that they then print and make a poster that goes in the hotel lobby for a chef or in the you know the business annual report of of ah architect out in the woods with his foot on the bumper of a pickup with a floor plan laid out on the hood we've all seen that stuff well I do a lot of stuff s o but I can tell you that I've done enough of this kind of work in my life and especially in the portrait world that I know that I was pretty good at asking for the money but I wasn't as good as some others that I could bring along that get me too teo help me a little bit we usedto have uh our sessions the problem with most of your clients is first off making a decision on which pose is going to be the big one it's always it's like when we know we're gonna get one big one for the wall then we're gonna get all this other stuff but we're having a hard time trying to side on which one's gonna be the big one and I had a woman that worked from in and as as a she was kind of like an office manager in a sales person at the front counter and she had this we always have these folios thatyou would open up and there were eight choices okay so this woman had a cupholder I mean ah coaster for her coffee cup and I would watch you take a sip of your coffee and she would always she would always get the clients going back and forth and back and forth and back and forth and whichever one she wanted the client to pick she would indicate that to me through trickery so I would she would always call me over tony camari help mrs johnson figure out which one of these poses you like and and she would always take a sip of coffee and she would put her coffee down and I would watch where she set the cup on the coaster and it would be in the upper right corner the lower right corner lower left corner in the centre in the top left of the top right I knew which one I was supposed to pick because she gave me the hint because mrs johnson can't make a decision oh I love this one right here in the top right and this is johnson would say well that's what she said I guess that is a pretty good one get the idea so we feel I mean I know that sounds like what huck trickery triggered you cheater it was a sales technique so I was just trying to make sure she needed needed she just needed to make a decision that you couldn't make one um I think I think I was I'm always lighthearted I'm always a pretty fun loving guy and always try to take this pretty easy but I didn't have any problem at all given him the price and and as everybody in any kind of business sense of anywhere in this planet will tell you you state the price and then you shut up you don't say another word they either buy it or they don't but whoever speaks next that as the as the masters say whoever speaks next loses so you better other prices o for the wedding say well total obama and here's the price and the prices down did you want put that in a card credit card I mean you have to ask for the money at some point so I hope some of this doesn't sound too boy he's militant about his pricing thing I am a little bit milton about this pricing thing and I'm just frustrated because I see so many great guitar furs that are starving and I'm just saddened by it so much talent out there so much talent and then there are some photographers that aren't very good at all but they are so great at selling and they're making a lot of money on average price work I mean on average quality work that's okay there's room for everybody you know it's a big it's a big world don't think you're the only one in town no think there's only those five photographers that you know in your community as a whole lot more than that there are there are people in your community him that air flying photographers in to do their sessions I'll guarantee there there are in every community because that's what the johnson's down the road told them they needed to do so what we just flew in so and so from palm beach to shoot our family portrait here's his card if you guys want you should having to that happens guys don't do not think it doesn't it happens I've flown in and done some things and I've seen and I've seen it happen to me so any questions any comments on your side over there well I have I have a comment sure and that is because because you are so you are telling us how you feel I'm in the same really would you really appreciate it but I want I want everyone at home tio here from people who have studied from you studied under you before because there's a reason to take it so seriously chris j duncan I love chris duncan says lubbock texas says thank you tony or spot on after studying with you in two thousand seven and greg daniel few years later we did exactly what you just described in our business has done exactly what you say price is ten percent of the decision and we have had five figure sales thank you for continuing to help the craft and the industry so there you go I think it's important you guys we want to keep doing this don't wait don't you want to get another camera don't you want to hopefully put your kids in the school I mean there's stuff going on in our lives and we can't do it if we're giving away our work it doesn't work and we will because it's because it's our craft and we love it and if somebody really on just wish I could afford that extreme but ten oh here I'll just give you one we do it all the time stop doing it all right let me rephrase you uh let me let me make this comment uh that is nice increase if you're still watching thank you I mean that's a that's a very nice comment from a very talented photographer and a great great friend and he plays rhythm guitar in my band we have a little band called bad exposure it's really fun yeah I'm the drummer in the back what I think that that I'm sorry I lost my train of thought on that little topic there but I just I do see over and over and over people make the mistakes of being afraid to ask for the money they think their value is less than it really is and don't discount that especially this like let's just let me just take one little topic on weddings I promise you all this as wedding photographers the day that you photographed those weddings will be the last photographs taken of most of the grand parents and I'm sorry toward it that way that work is valuable that word means something you better take your time and you better do it well be be great to your clients and make your clients make your clients so love what you've done that they just want to be friends with you and my client some of my clients that spent the most money with me became my best friends I wasn't trying to take advantage of him I was trying to you know you don't go looking for the cheapest lawyer when you need a lawyer you can't have the one it kind of gets the job done well for you because you need him on your team not somebody that's just a hack

Class Description

Working from home is a great way to minimize costs, but it can be challenging to deal with the inevitable space and light limitations and it can feel awkward to explain to clients.

In Inside the Home Studio, Tony Corbell will help you address the logistical and practical challenges of working from home. 

You’ll learn how to:

  • Work with low ceilings, dark spaces, and small skinny rooms
  • Market and sell in-home shoots
  • Store and organize your equipment.
  • Work with family and client schedules

Tony will help you come up with new ways to shoot in ordinary spaces by sharing real-life examples of home studio scenarios. He’ll shoot formal and candid portraits throughout the entire house, teaching you how to leverage each room for its specific uniqueness.

Inside the Home Studio will show you how to approach different photographic genres and help you make the space you have to work for your business.



Another great course by Tony Corbell. I loved this course. Tony is a great teacher, great photographer and great business man. He's enjoyable to listen to and a great teacher. He holds nothing back and shows how to shoot great pictures even in small shooting environments or on a low budget. I would buy again Tony's courses.

Penny Foster

Wow! Tony is fantastic! So many hints and tips, crammed into this great course. I shoot portraits out of a small converted garage, about 9 ft high, 9 feet wide, and about 19 feet long. Tony has shown me so many ways to make this small space work for me, for which I am eternally grateful. What this course highlights is that whatever small space you have, there are ways of making it work. You need to buy this course and watch it over and over because, every time I watch it, I gain more and more info that I missed the first time around. Brilliant!

Kat Ciemiega

Absolutely wonderful, I cannot praise the content enough. I value Tony's stories as much as the information he is giving away, because it puts the data in the perspective and practical context of the actions we take. Thank you for this class!