Fan Photographer job? Anyone?

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Feb 11, 2006
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I am not worried about them owning the images. They pay the most productive photographer $15 an hour and the least $8. I know I can fall in the middle, which gets $11, and I don't see why I cannot be the most productive.

Is it worth my time? Well, right now, I sit at home and make nothing, and I am slightly desperate in need of money. I can't get any nibbles even advertising weddings as low as $500, so any money is better than none.

Oh yeah, they offered me the job, so I start Saturday.
 
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I actually didn't start till yesterday. I shot at both the USC and UCLA games. It was a long 12 hour day (with about a 90 min break in between). You have to be somewhat aggressive and have an engaging, exciting approach and personality to get the pics. As I said, we were all competing with each other and even though I shot 400 pics at the second game (about 200 different groups) another guy still beat me by over 100.

They have a box of Nikon d40's and D3000/3100 bodies with 18-55 lenses. Onboard flash was required as per the training. I was able to bring my sb-800 for the second game as I saw another, more experienced fan photographer had done for the first game.

For the most part, the job was fun. People who say yes were happy to be photographed. I found the crowd at UCLA (Rose Bowl) much friendlier and that is where I got more photos.

The training said to shoot everything in manual and of course we shot jpeg. During the day game I used aperture priority. Frankly I think telling mostly amateurs and some people who have never used a dSLR before to shoot on manual is absurd. For the night game I did use manual, setting an exposure for the field and letting the flash expose the people.

I think I will for sure do at least one more game. The two in one day was unique, and I know I earned enough to more than pay for my gas, but I am not sure if one game will make sense, since I will be spending about 20 in gas to get to the game and back. We shall see.
 
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Good luck, Rodney! Jobs are hard to come by these days, as long as you are making money and not spending all your wages on gas to get there and home.

Carole
 
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Thanks, it is working out so far. And my boss just told me she is going to recommend me to be the manager of all the photographers for the Clipper/Laker games. It would mean a nice base salary plus commissions. And no more shooting and hoping to make top dog.
 
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Congrats. There is a certain irony that you're doing such a good job shooting, that they don't want you shooting anymore...
 
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Congrats. There is a certain irony that you're doing such a good job shooting, that they don't want you shooting anymore...
Yeah, I see that. Also I think it is my age/maturity and experience and I have a degree in communications. Most of the other people are young, college types or recent grads.
 
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I think it's great that they have noticed and acknowledged all of your talents and want to let you use them. I think it would be fun to manage a bunch of photographers. Good luck with your new venture! Salary plus commissions can add up to a very nice paycheck :)

Carole
 
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Here is a screen shot of 4 pics that have sold. I have a control panel site where I can see all my images and all my sales. This is a sampling of what people bought.

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 
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Lansdowne, PA
I'll say that you have done a much better job than most photogs I've seen at those events. Just the fact that you knew to expose for the field and let the flash fill in the rest put you miles ahead. Most that I've seen looks like they were shot in a cave and not at an event.

Great work!
Gary
 
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Thanks Gary!

When I told my boss (who is not really a shooter) that I was shooting sometimes at 1/15th of a second at f8 or 11 (for depth of field and to cover focus errors) and she was like, umm, that's pretty slow.

The lenses are VR and we are required to shoot a 18mm ALWAYS, and of course the flash stops any motion in the subject, I told her, without being rude or a know it all, "it seems to be working ok."
 

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