Creating high-quality images on location presents a
complex series of challenges. Thorough planning and communication among
the client, the photographer, the location owner and representatives at
the site can help ensure maximum efficiency and productivity.
Clients should be prepared to specify:
Exact location of the site, description
and documentation required.
Walk through the project with
photographer if feasible
Provide maps and/or plans with accurate
Provide construction progress photos
Clearly describe goals: areas to
photograph, number of views
Detail design materials, light sources,
spaces in use, etc.
Communicate problems or flaws that
photographer should downplay or avoid
Who is commissioning photography and
for what purpose?
Images for single client only?
Multiple parties sharing photo costs?
Outline permissions required for use of
photography needed by all parties?
Delivery deadline and presentation form
of the images. Prints, slides, transparencies, digital media, etc.
Negotiation and fees:
The photographer's fee is predicated on the
use of the images and the costs of production. Broader usage increases the
value of the images. Fees are adjusted proportionately. Client and
photographer must understand if there is leeway in the budget for
unexpected conditions, extra views, variables in time, materials, job
costs. If the budget is fixed, the limitations should be clearly
understood by all parties? If the client needs to negotiate a lower fee,
what can be given up in return?
This might involve restricted usage, fewer
views, less elaborate lighting or styling, longer deadlines, more
prominent credit line for the photographer, among other options. Once all
terms are understood and agreed upon, the client should be willing to sign
a proposal or a contract and to provide a purchase order along with
retainer to confirm the assignment.
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