All About Our Photography Pricing and Why

So you’ve made it to this page in our journal to learn all about our pricing! You may be considering hiring us as your next photographer, videographer, or wedding consultant. If that is the case, we graciously thank you for the opportunity to help make your life’s moments into cherished treasures that you can enjoy for a lifetime.

What you are going to get on this page is a thorough explanation on why we charge what we charge; what exactly goes into your pricing, why our pricing should make sense, and why it is worth every penny and more to you, our extremely valued clients and customers. We want you to be happy with your investment and we will explain why you will!

First thing is first: Your photographs, video, and/or wedding is very important. Those moments only happen once. They will never be repeated again. Whether it’s the way you look at the time, the presence of your loved ones with you, that particular event and all the very special emotions you and everyone in your presence will feel at that moment in your lives, it will only happen once. Our lives are fleeting and the only way to relive those important and heartfelt times are to capture them as they happen, as close to reality and most importantly, with as much feeling and emotion retained as possible.

We all have mobile phones, and many of us have compact point and shoot cameras that we use either on a daily basis or at events to take as many pics and selfies as possible! And then we look at the pictures, we laugh…and we realize that these pics are just pics. The lighting was bad, someone blinked, it was blurry, and many other shortfalls of limited technology will keep those pics as just ‘pics’. Lost in your cell phone, backed up in the cloud maybe, but never on your wall to cherish everyday. And the whole time, you may have missed out on the fun and festivities, the true moments that were meant to be experienced, not to be lost or taken with a basic phone. What are we saying? Enjoy your time fully! Don’t worry about getting the important stuff with your cell phone, that’s what we are there for! We will make sure your special moments are captured in the best way possible with the best technology and minds, while allowing you to be free to truly experience your time and life without that burden. Remember, it only happens once…

This brings us to the main point of our pricing. Our price is not solely based on hourly time. If we based our price only on time spent at your event, it would demean what we truly do for you. We at AJ Patell Studios choose not to be just robotic photographers who hold up a fancy camera and click the shutter button. Many people can do that, and there are many amateur and non-professional hobbyists that can do that for you for very low prices, whom ARE based on just an hourly rate at your event. And with them, what you will get is just that, an hourly hobbyist who is clicking basic pictures for you and not much more– a step up from a point and shoot, and basic labor. For many clients, that is the bare minimum expectation. This is where our pricing is a reflection of not just our time spent for you, but also of the equipment and expertise and knowledge we bring to be able to provide you everlasting, timeless photographs. Not pics, nor pictures…true photographs. There is a difference to us. A photograph to us means something that can be cherished, loved, hung on walls, and most important, passed on to your younger generations as the art of your lives.

Our pricing includes the knowledge of lighting, framing, spacing, composition, colors, posing (things that go on during your event,) and expertise in post-processing, editing, retouching, resolutions, printing, fulfillment, and creating art (things that happen on our very high-end computer workstations after your event.) We will generally spend MORE TIME on your photographs AFTER your event, than at your event. Many photographers spend 10-15 minutes processing and editing an image. We at AJ Patell Studios may spend 1 hour, and even 2 or more hours on occasion, on a SINGLE portrait to get it just right! Thus, the time spent at your event is only the beginning of our work for you. It’s not uncommon an entire week or longer could be spent working on your important photographs. For video and film work, this extends to even a month or longer. We are trying to show, that for those clients who want the absolute best production and care of their lives’ moments, it takes a lot of time and effort, as it should. Our pricing is indicative of the total effort and energy we spend on a client’s work.

Part of our pricing comes with an expectation of control. In order to deliver to you the finest possible photographs of your event, we need to be able to orchestrate, light, move and instruct the ‘pieces’ of your event to make sure the lighting, background, focus, colors, composition and more are as close to perfect as we can reasonably get. This is why our free one-hour consultation is very important as we discuss these things in detail. For weddings, we need to coordinate with the planner, the venue and other vendors to assure these basic needs are met. It will affect your photographs if we have to show up blind and the wedding couple is in the worst light possible, in the worst corner of the facility. Even though, through our expertise we can still produce very good photographs for you in those conditions, we always strive for perfection and the best for our clients. There is a lot of homework we do PRIOR to your event to help ensure to the best of our ability that the greatest photographic opportunities will be available for you. Our ‘time’ starts even before your event. For models and portraits clients, this means consulting on things such as clothing choices, hair and makeup suggestions, and other details that are important to your photography shoot as well.

Servicing an event of hundreds of people, solo, can be a challenging task for anyone in any industry. With our photography services we pride ourselves on capturing as many of the best moments as possible. With a solo photographer, this is hardly possible when many things are going on at once. All attention must always be on the couple, but what about those fine moments between all your guests and families? With a staff to help, we can cover more scenes, lighting can be quicker, more equipment can be handled, we can be in more places at once. These are things we need to be able to accommodate to properly handle the task of capturing the absolute best photographs. Your pricing includes the time and efforts of a crew, not just a single photographer. The focus should be on your moments, not on trying to do everything by oneself.

All of these things and more go into your pricing. For most all of our pricing, we have bundled in most of the important additions that our clients will usually purchase, so we take the confusion of choosing “extras”, out of the way. We factor in very important processes and efforts which are required to give you an amazing portrait photography service. At the same, we understand that in our lives, we do not have unlimited budgets or income. To help our clients, we provide limited interest-free financing for those qualified! Our goal is to make the process of getting high-end photography service as easy and simple as possible! After all, we are consumers as well. So we try to keep our prices at the lowest allowable to get the job done right. We don’t include premiums for our work. Our pricing will always remain fair and commensurate to all the time and effort we will put in to capturing and developing your finest memories. When you look back, we hope our service will bring sweet smiles to your faces, with no regrets.

For more info, or to schedule your free consultation, please visit AJ Patell Studios.

We thank you for reading, and hope many more of life’s finest for you and yours…

Warm regards,

AJ Patell

AJ Patell

AJ Patell is President of AJ Patell LLC, based out of San Francisco, California. AJ specializes in media production and publishing, artistic photography, modeling career workshops and fashion photography. He also serves as a wedding photographer and videographer in South San Francisco.…

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