Why do photographers charge so much?
To the person(s) who thinks my pricing is outrageous:
Being a photographer (any type) doesn't mean we show up at your session or wedding, shoot and then go home and thats the end of it. Most of us are operating a business, which means doing our own marketing, sales, accounting, management, training, post production, website management, designing, planing, studying, etc....
So to be able to support yourself (family) as a full time photographer, you need to make a great deal of money in order to do so.
With that being said, and this is just from my own personal experience, I can only take a minimum amount of sessions a month. (I have a family that I need to tend to)
I take on average 8-12 sessions a month these sessions range from $250-$500 (sometimes more if they place an order) So on a low end I can make $3,000 a month to $6,000 which totals out to be anywhere from $36,000 a year to $72,000 a year.
Since I am a small business owner, I pay taxes, totaling $9,000per year to $18,000per year, leaving my gross income $27,000-$54,000 a year
Off of that I pay $900 a month for my studio rent ($27,000-$10,800 = $16,200 or $54,000-$10,800 = $43,200)
I also pay insurance, in case of any accidents, or you try to sue me, or if anyone decides to break my equipment. This is roughly $400 a year. $16,200-400 = $15,800 or $43,200 - $400 = $42,800)
I also operate a website, and host online galleries for you to view your images. This costs me $400 a year. ($15,800 - $400 = $15,400 or $42,800-$400 = $42,400)
I also pay for advertisement, and have subscriptions and dues, this totals out to be $500 a year ($15,400 - $500 = $14,900 or $42,800 - $500 = $41,900)
Since I am a newborn photographer, I have to keep up to date with safety training, posing, etc....this runs me $1,000 a year ($14,900-$1000 = $13,900 or $41,900-$1000 = $40,900)
Along with being a newborn photographer comes purchasing props, outfits, wraps and accessories....and let me tell you, these are some of the most expensive items in newborn and baby photography industry and yes its necessary to stay up to date with products and fashion. Babies poop, and pee and ruin backdrops, and outfits that most of the time are $70+ a piece...this runs me around $12,000 a year....many times more....($13,900 - $12,000 = $900 or $40,900-$12,000 = $28,900)
So a lot of the time this can put me in the hole business financial wise. Whatever I do have left, most of the time I invest back into my business.
I have two cameras that total out to be around $5000, plus my lenses that are another $3500, as well as my studio equipment that is another $4500
While there is a higher side to what my income could be, 90% of the time its not on the high side, most of the time its on the low side, or in the middle.
With all of that being said, I love photography, I love capturing your memories, and snuggling your little ones for a few hours. I love coming home and editing your images (each session takes around 5-10 hours, or 25ish hours for a wedding) but its expensive, ridiculously expensive.
This is not an every day expense for you, and I understand everyone has a budget, I totally get budgeting, but this is a once a year, maybe once every few years INVESTMENT. You will look back one day and be thankful that you had these portraits done. You will show your littles when they're older, they will show their kids, and their grandkids, so on and so forth. This is your investment, and these are your memories. One day photographs will be the only thing left for you to remember how tiny your children were, how innocent and pure they were.
I hope I was able to clarify this a little bit, as to why photographers charge hundreds and thousands of dollars.