Saturday, January 16, 2010

How to prepare an estimate - Production

Some people have asked me what should they consider when preparing an estimate. For this reason, I post an example of what you should normally do in my blog. Well, personally I use BlinkBid. Even though it is not a cheap software, it helps you out with some stuff that you should not forget. Nevertheless, when I began in the production business, I used simple software like Numbers, Excel or even Word.
And this is what you should always keep in mind when starting a bid for a photo shoot:

Some things may vary and the photographer will maybe take care of the equipment rental, but if he/she doesn’t, keep it in mind. As well as the post-production. Sometimes, the client will do it, so the photographer doesn't have to worry about it but, if the client is not taking care of it, ask the photographer if they are willing to do it and if its taken care of in their fees.

Along with the lightning equipment, there are also many studios that may offer the equipment rental and even catering, nevertheless, if they don’t you must take care of these. Consider that there is always someone extra, an assistant, a model or maybe a friend of the client that will show up. Do not be cheap.

In pre-production, scouting and casting must be included. When doing this, take pictures of everything (which I assume you know already) and charge for hour/day you are there. Include a studio rental or a catering fee for the people who are attending the casting.

The props and wardrobe can be leased or bought, whichever you prefer, keep in mind that you must establish that in the estimate so the client knows where the money is going. I recommend that you also include a little bit of money for gas when you are using your cars/vans for the equipment and to include a few bucks for the water bottles, coke and beer cans (it actually can happen!) for the crew and members of the production.

Finally, you may be asked for the model releases to be signed. I highly encourage to take care of that with the photographer and the client so, you don’t get involved in further legal actions.

FYI: I used MindJet Manager for this picture. I personally like to scheme my ideas and get them into conceptual maps.

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