Great BritainPhotography student, how much to charge for first official assignment?
The client is the tourism organisation for a fairly major town, and the assignment is to cover an evening event of around 4 hours (only a short bus ride from my home), with post-production also. I'm a first year student but they clearly acknowledge my need to charge for my work and so have requested an estimate price. I will only require myself and kit I own for the shoot, though I may buy a flashgun also.
They would require rights to use the images in any of their publications (brochures, website etc.) as much as they wished.
It's crucial to me at this stage that I don't scare them off with a figure too high as they have spoken of many future jobs they could have for me, yet I don't want to risk undercutting myself as a professional.
I know they have many other photographers on their books, but I don't have any idea how much they pay them, and so I'm looking here for advice on the matter..
Any help on this would be much appreciated, thanks!
Sounds like they are using you, a first year student photographer because they are expecting you to be less expensive, (perhaps cheap) than those others in their books.... the expecting to use the images "as much as they wished" and "don't like the restrictions...that some photographers apply" and "...make getting in touch with a photographer very awkward" are all things which make me squint a little bit.
Don't charge based on future jobs you think they might throw your way. You will regret it, and they will never see you as the same level as those 'others' even after you are no longer just a first year student. Obviously, you don't have to be charging the same price as a seasoned pro, but if they want to use your photos, it doesn't matter if you or someone who has been in the business for 20 years took them. So, usage should be roughly the same; maybe you could take concessions on the creative fees.
Unlimited duration costs money. And it's always 'awkward' to renegotiate terms and licenses... clients like to say this, I think. :) You need to know how many/which photos, where they will be used, specifically, and for how long. And all that needs to be in your contract; (and you need to have one!) As far as pricing, I'm not best to answer without more details, and particularly because as an amateur I'm learning that part as well.
You need to have two fees. One fee, a Creative fee is for you to show up shoot and edit the photos from the event. The other fee, a usage fee is how much to charge them to use the photos. You need to ask the client how many photos they will need also.
You said: 'They would require rights to use the images in any of their publications (brochures, website etc.) as much as they wished."
You need your client to be more specific on the usage.