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Re: Update! [Re: FretlessD] #37092
10/31/11 02:29 AM
10/31/11 02:29 AM
Joined: Jun 2011
Canada
Nicole St-Onge Offline OP
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Nicole St-Onge  Offline OP
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Joined: Jun 2011
Canada
Originally Posted By: FretlessD
Your table should be your table. I would have asked store management to provide another place for the tip jar. Not cool!


Originally Posted By: Jim Poor
I would have moved the jar or at least made it clear where the money was going.


Thanks guys! I thought this was wrong but I'm such an easy going person that I never want to offend anyone. And when I kind of brought it up at the end, the rescue's response was "oh, no, people knew they were donating to us, we always have a donation box." They might always have a donation box but I don't think they would have brought in the money they did and wouldn't have adopted out all 10 of their kittens without having me there. And people did make a "donation" directly towards me when they put it in the jar. Oh well, I may have got burnt a little this time, just another learning experience, I need to get some more business sense into my head.

Since the stores are advertising the events as "free" photos I feel weird asking them to pay me. I don't mind volunteering my time to charity either but I think I need to implement my own donation box, maybe a $2-$3 suggested donation per customer. I'll put put a sign out that says we are volunteering our time for the day and to help us continue to support these events please donate so they can continue to be free!

Hopefully this won't be meet with resistance and I won't look stupid for asking to do this. I just feel like I should get something when shooting on such a large scale. For charities I already volunteer/offer my time to take free photos of their fosters and sheltered animals and I do fundraising, willing to donate 10% of sales back to them too. Plus all the door prises they want for their pasta dinners. I know they need all the help they can get and I hope I don't sound greedy but I have to be paid too. Ugh, I'm a bit tired, frustrated and confused! Thanks so much for helping you guys help me make sense of it all!

Last edited by Nicole St-Onge; 10/31/11 02:32 AM.
Tip Jar Idea [Re: Nicole St-Onge] #37119
11/01/11 04:38 AM
11/01/11 04:38 AM
Joined: Jun 2011
Canada
Nicole St-Onge Offline OP
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Nicole St-Onge  Offline OP
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Joined: Jun 2011
Canada
Have I ever mentioned how much I love my husband! He comes up with the best ideas! I was/am still very torn about to to approach the store managers about this sensitive subject (yes I realize that I am dwelling on this far too much) and he suggested that I put out a "Tip Jar" instead of donation box along with my sign that says I volunteer my time to help keep events like this free." I feel comfortable doing this. YAY.

Re: Tip Jar Idea [Re: Nicole St-Onge] #37121
11/01/11 12:17 PM
11/01/11 12:17 PM
Joined: Jun 2011
San Antonio, TX
FretlessD Offline
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FretlessD  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2011
San Antonio, TX
Nicole,

You just stated in your reply about the tip jar idea that "I volunteer my time to help keep events like these free". That is not accurate as to the way you described it initially.

You said the store offered you the shoot for a $75 store credit. That is a fee no matter how under valued it might have been. Jim and I both wrote our opinion on that matter. Even though it felt like you were working for free, you did negotiate that arrangement. So, putting a tip jar stating you're working for free may not sit well with the store. It is the store that made the photos free to their customers, not you.

You also stated that the store would provide you a table to display your photos and business on. Therefore, the donation box on "your table" should not have been an issue. Embarrassing, perhaps, but it was a point of the agreement.

Which brings me to my main point... CONTRACTS!!! You should have prepared a written agreement in order to keep that points of the agreement clear. This would not leave it up to memory as the details of the agreement.

If you want to be taken seriously as a photographer, the way you conduct the "business side" of the business is as important as your talent as a photographer. I can almost guarantee you that your talents as a photographer were near the bottom of the list as to what the store manager was looking to hire. He was looking for anyone who could shoot an "in focus" photo for a "free" 4x6.

Now, one way you could have made this work to your advantage is this. Tell the manager that your sitting fee for such an event is $500. And that if you here to shoot the event, the agreement would be between the store, rescue group, and you.

The difference between the $500 and the $75 would be a donation write off to the rescue group. You would have a contract between the 3 parties agreeing to your fee, and donation of time and expenses. Those in turn could be used as non-profit donations on your taxes.

If they like working with you and the quality of your work, then then next event can be negotiated at a higher rate, still setting the $500 fee as the baseline. You could negotiate $150 in cash, and the $350 balance as your donation to a non-profit (still a write off).

I know you want to get your work seen, but you also want to be seen as a professional.

Doug


FOR THE LOVE OF DOG!!!
Re: Tip Jar Idea [Re: FretlessD] #37129
11/01/11 01:00 PM
11/01/11 01:00 PM
Joined: May 2008
Virginia, USA
Jim Poor Offline
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Jim Poor  Offline
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Virginia, USA
Doug, what you describe actually amounts to a complex donation of time, which is NOT a tax write off.

The store would actually have to pay the $500 and the photographer would have to make a separate donation for tax purposes.

Re: Tip Jar Idea [Re: Jim Poor] #37130
11/01/11 01:44 PM
11/01/11 01:44 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Florida
Jim Garvie Offline
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Jim Garvie  Offline
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Florida
What Jim says is correct!

Jim


Jim Garvie
www.jagphoto.biz
Re: Tip Jar Idea [Re: FretlessD] #37131
11/01/11 02:42 PM
11/01/11 02:42 PM
Joined: Jun 2011
Canada
Nicole St-Onge Offline OP
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Nicole St-Onge  Offline OP
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Joined: Jun 2011
Canada
Fretless, Jim P and Jim G, thank you for the input! It is much appreciated. In all of my excitement to get some work and get out there I under valued myself and I am now regretting it. Don't get me wrong, I actually really liked doing the event. I just feel a bit overworked and cheated for money and I am trying to find a reasonable way to bring this up and fix for future events so everyone will be happy. I'm just trying to come up with some ideas and options rather quickly.

Re: Tip Jar Idea [Re: Nicole St-Onge] #37132
11/01/11 02:53 PM
11/01/11 02:53 PM
Joined: May 2008
Virginia, USA
Jim Poor Offline
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Jim Poor  Offline
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Virginia, USA
This is how I would do it, but keep in mind that I know nothing about facilities in your area that will do the event. We have several pet supermarket type places here, one with a warehouse space that I use (the rescues make the arrangements) often for these things. They are happy to draw in customers by hosting the events for free.

In either of these situations, a rescue that will promote the event is crucial. For the mass events, I've done as many as 30 sessions in 6 hours and as few as 2 in five hours based on how well the event was promoted.

Of course, promote it yourself as well, but the rescues have (or at least should have) a large mailing list.

For the second idea, the promotion still applies, but have them promote it permanently on their web page, at adoption events and by inserting flyers/postcards into any adoption packages.



****
Dear Rescue Person,

I'm glad our photo event was successful and I have a few ideas on how it can be even more so.

1. I'd like to arrange a photo fundraiser at [figure out what to do about the location] for 4-5 hours. The session fee would be $40 [pick your own price, but this is what I do for mass events], and would include one 5x7 or one digital file [sized to print at 5x7]. 50% [again, use your own figure] of the session fee would be donated back to the rescue.

2. As an ongoing fundraiser, I'd like to offer a discount of $150 off a private session, which is regularly $350 and donate $100 from each session back to the rescue [use your own numbers].

*****

Re: Tip Jar Idea [Re: Jim Poor] #37133
11/01/11 02:55 PM
11/01/11 02:55 PM
Joined: May 2008
Virginia, USA
Jim Poor Offline
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Jim Poor  Offline
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Virginia, USA
The mass events are a good start, but you'll eventually find that you work less and make more for both you and the rescue with the higher priced formal sessions.

There are only two groups that I still do mass events for, and that's only twice per year.

Re: Tip Jar Idea [Re: Jim Poor] #37134
11/01/11 03:06 PM
11/01/11 03:06 PM
Joined: Jun 2011
San Antonio, TX
FretlessD Offline
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FretlessD  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2011
San Antonio, TX
Quote:
Doug, what you describe actually amounts to a complex donation of time, which is NOT a tax write off.

The store would actually have to pay the $500 and the photographer would have to make a separate donation for tax purposes.



Your right, Jim. (I wasn't quite sure on that aspect.) Thanks for the correction.

Doug


FOR THE LOVE OF DOG!!!
Re: Tip Jar Idea [Re: Jim Poor] #37136
11/01/11 04:38 PM
11/01/11 04:38 PM
Joined: Jun 2011
Canada
Nicole St-Onge Offline OP
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Nicole St-Onge  Offline OP
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Joined: Jun 2011
Canada
Thanks Jim!

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