Its really NOT the camera, its the PICTURE

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Larry, Jun 1, 2004.

  1. Larry

    Larry Guest

    I spent a 3 day week-end at a horse show.

    Here in Connecticut it was COLD and windy (and very dusty from the show ring)

    The only cameras I brought were a Sony 717 and a Fuji S7000 (with the biggest
    Quantaray flash I could find that fits the generic hot shoe on those

    I had my laptop with Photoshop installed, one 19" CRT (the laptop has an
    extra output) and an Olympic P-400 dye sub printer.

    I sold 50 pictures BEFORE I stopped counting and before I ever broke out the
    Sony which, even though it is only 5mp, its my favorite P&S.

    The Fuji does a fair job as long as you do most of your framing in the camera
    so you dont have to crop too much. Used in "raw" mode and in manual with the
    Quantaray flash, and loading the photos with the Photoshop raw converter (NOT
    the HORRIBLE raw converter from Fuji) the end result was surprising (though
    NOT particularly stunning).

    Standing in the center of a 100 ft wide, 200 ft long show ring I was shooting
    with shutter speeds from 1/200 to 1/500 and whatever fstop would work (ISO
    200) at the time. (the lighting in the arena is continuously changing due to
    the translucent fiberglass roof panels used in the arena and passing clouds).
    I tried not to shoot from more than 50 - 60 feet. Given that the horses are
    moving past quickly I had about 2 to 3 seconds to frame and shoot each
    picture.(constant auto-focus is a MUST for this shooting)

    I haven't yet counted up how many 8x10 and 5x7's I sold, but it was quite a
    few (more than 75 for the weekend) Once I separate the cash from the checks
    and set aside the 6% sales tax, I'll have a nice deposit to make in my
    company account.

    Not bad for a "Point and shoot" camera that even I didn't have much respect
    for... 'ya never know.

    My reasoning at the time I packed the cameras for the show was "I aint'
    bringin' 2500 dollars worth of camera and lens into that dusty, nasty ring
    again. Last time out one bump from a rambunctious horse cost me about 300
    dollars in repairs and a full 2days of shooting. Now I know I dont need to
    risk it every time I go into the ring.

    Once people saw what was coming out of the printer (with VERY little work in
    photoshop) I was kept so busy going into the ring I only had time for 3 posed
    pictures.. For those I used the Sony, Outdoors in full sun.
    Larry, Jun 1, 2004
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  2. Larry

    Sorby Guest

    Thanks for sharing Larry.

    I'm shooting more and more equestrian events but up until now have been
    handing out business cards directing people to my website where they can see
    and order their photos.

    I realise I'm missing out on valuable sales because a large percentage of my
    potential customers a) lose my card b) don't have time to look c) are
    technophobic d) don't have internet access e) have lost the enthusiasm they
    had on the day of the event.

    One problem I would have if I attempted to display/print photos on the day
    is that with most of the competitions I shoot the competitors are allocated
    a time at which their round begins - then they bugger off home rather than
    hanging around all day. I could do with a wireless system which would send
    my photos back to my van and automatically display them in rotation with an
    identifying number so that competitors could note-down which shots they
    wanted on order-slips I would provide. Hmm - maybe I should exchange my
    Canon 10D for a Nikon D2h (with the wireless option)!

    Does the dye-sub printer you use work out cost-effective? And how fast does
    it print?

    Thanks again - enjoyed reading it.
    Sorby, Jun 1, 2004
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  3. I haven't yet counted up how many 8x10 and 5x7's I sold, but it was quite
    Sounds like an excellent idea. If you don't mind me asking, how much were
    you charging for a print?
    Derek Fountain, Jun 1, 2004
  4. Larry

    Alan Terry Guest

    Sounds like you started the weekend with a 300 loss brought forward (tho
    perhaps you were insured?).

    Are you in overall profit?
    Alan Terry, Jun 1, 2004
  5. Larry

    Larry Guest

    The dye sub is an Olypus p400 (old stuff but still better than any clogged up
    ink-jet would be outdoors in cool weather.

    It takes about 90 seconds to print an 8x10 on A4 paper. Consumables on the
    Oly printer are $2.19 (US) per A4 print. I consider this to be cheap when I
    compare it to using (for instance) an HP-7760 or the like. If you count your
    prints with those you will find that an 8x10 print costs about $3 to $5
    dollars for ink alone. (thats the extreme example) My Canon i960 costs about
    1.50 to 2 dollars a print.

    To keep dust out of the printer when outdoors I have sewn up the neck holes
    on a couple of new T-shirts and I pull one down over the top of the printer
    after loading it up.

    Before doing this a puff of wind could blow dust into the printer and mess up
    the next few prints. (I only wasted 3 sheets before I figured out a cure) The
    shape of the Oly printer keeps the T-shirt from touching the print.

    As for display of prints, I DONT! I dump the chips from the camera into a
    reader and go shoot more prints.

    I then run the pictures in a slide show on a Hi-res 19 inch flat screen CRT.
    People wander past and see their brother/friend/sister ect., and BINGO the
    subject comes to see.

    The events I shoot are organized in such a fashion that MOST participants are
    going to be around for three (or more) days of showing from 8 AM to 7 PM.
    (yes its grueling, I have done it with my wife for years). Its basicly the
    American Quarter Horse Circuit.
    Larry, Jun 2, 2004
  6. Larry

    Larry Guest

    I tend to charge what the market will bear.. In this case we are dealing with
    people riding horses they paid from 25,000 dollars to 175,000 dollars for
    (thats right! thats ONE HUNDRED SEVENTY FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS) This market
    can bear whatever you want to charge.

    When you are selling "On Site" you need to look your market over and decide
    what you think a particular crownd is going to be willing to pay.

    "On Site" photos get priced on site. If you come to me where I live, my
    sitting fees are haning on the wall.

    On the other hand if I go to the site (and I ONLY go when invited) its going
    to cost more than if you came to me.

    The going rate in and around my area for prints has been hovering around 35
    dollars for an 8x10 from an "Event" photographer. The advent of digital
    cameras and ink jet printers drove the price down for a while, when everyone
    thought they could be a photographer if they had a 2mp camera and a 90 dollar

    After a couple of years of that nonsense prices are drifting from $30 to $50
    per 8x10.

    I'm slightly higher than some.
    Larry, Jun 2, 2004
  7. Larry

    Larry Guest

    Insurance... just like American Express used to say .... I dont leave home
    without it!

    Ive been in overall profit for a while (digital) and was in profit with film
    for several decades.

    I have only recently begun to broaden my horizons as I near retirement from
    my "job of work".
    Larry, Jun 2, 2004
  8. Larry

    sun lei Guest

    sun lei, Jun 2, 2004
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