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Client was late! Missed golden hour.
  
 
elkhornsun
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p.2 #1 · p.2 #1 · Client was late! Missed golden hour.


As others have suggested I would have cancelled the shoot and rescheduled. The client should pay for your lost time as well. I like these sorts of shoots as I learn about the client and can decide early on whether to continue the relationship or bail.


May 17, 2017 at 09:42 PM
curious80
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p.2 #2 · p.2 #2 · Client was late! Missed golden hour.


PanS wrote:
I read all the posts, I think a combination of gentle and stern is what I need.
People have been 10 or 15 minutes late which happens, but this was just something else.

I could've avoided putting myself in a difficult spot by doing a raincheck on the shoot. We both would've been happier I believe. I'll practice using my backbone more.


I would frankly put a significant part of the blame on you. Yes the client started the mess by being so late. However once that was done, you as the photographer should have known that it is no longer possible to deliver the vision that you had in mind. Instead of trying to 'make it work' you should have let the client know right away that given the light it is no longer possible to do a quality shoot. Nevertheless since you guys went ahead and did the shoot anyway and ended up with pictures that neither of you was thrilled about, the right thing after that would have been to offer her to meet again in the right lighting conditions and shoot her pictures again.



May 17, 2017 at 10:42 PM
JWilsonphoto
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p.2 #3 · p.2 #3 · Client was late! Missed golden hour.


I've waited 8 hours for a board of directors shoot, but the clock was running the whole time. 2 hours late and oversleeping as the excuse? She has zero respect for you, or anyone else. No one needs clients like this, let her BFF do it with an iPhone.


Jun 13, 2017 at 04:49 PM
JWilsonphoto
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p.2 #4 · p.2 #4 · Client was late! Missed golden hour.


Peter Figen wrote:
Of course, the obvious thing is that if you ever want to work with a specific client again, you probably don't want to piss them off or get too adversarial with them. That never works well when you're shooting people. Products maybe but never good for a long term relationship.

One time, a corporate communications director for a large company was being the biggest dick in the world and I finally had enough and told him to go eff himself. I got a call from the agency head a few minutes later telling my I should apologize. I did
...Show more

I had one of those too Peter, this one had the audacity to try to tell me that he had to hire other photographers occasionally as his fiduciary duty. His line of reasoning was, what would the company do if something happened to me and I was the only shooter they worked with? I took it kind of personally because I busted my butt for this corporation and completely revamped their "look" with the direction I took their product photography in. The company was 50% of my annual billing at that time so he did have considerable sway, but I knew that if I let this stand, it would only get worse. This joker used to call me at 11 pm to see if I'd jump on the first flight out the next morning, when he had known about it for days, he just wanted to see if I'd do it. So, I rolled the dice and told him that I had never looked at the situation in that light, but appreciated his perspective. Given this new found point of view, I guess it would be my fiduciary duty to accept the generous offer his biggest competitor had made me some months before. He was like a deer in the headlights, stammered all over himself and finally blurted out........"Well, that's not the same thing at all........!" He went on to talk about the millions of dollars his company had spent on my photography and building the relationship that we had. I listened attentively and very respectfully told him that I had long valued the relationship and had turned down his top three competitors over the past decade, but based upon his perspective, I was rethinking that tack. That was the last I heard of any other photographers, late night phone calls, last minute meetings at Starbucks just to see if I'd jump. Some people just need a little refocusing, it's a risk, but they will own you if you let it go on.



Jun 13, 2017 at 05:09 PM
glort
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p.2 #5 · p.2 #5 · Client was late! Missed golden hour.


JWilsonphoto wrote:
Some people just need a little refocusing, it's a risk, but they will own you if you let it go on.


I call this being in control of the power base.

To me it's especially important with wedding clients. In all the years I did commercial photography, I was lucky enough to never have problems with my clients. Fact was I would jump for them because that was a significant part of the justification of my prices. Never had 11Pm phone calls of meetings for the hell of it though. More like something unexpected has come up can you help us out? For what I charge you, I live to get you out of the poo!

With wedding clients it's important to let them know while you will do your best for them, You are not their puppet and you won't fall over to their every whim. You sometimes get the self important ones whom you will make a fair concession for then the next thing you know they are wanting double the work and cost for half the price.

I look for reasons to say no very early on in the piece so they realise who is controlling the transaction and who needs who more than the other.
Arrogant? I'd say so but I'd also say it's pretty much essential. The minute you loose control, you loose respect and it all goes south from there. It is a fine line but again an Important one I feel.
yes, you are paying me, yes I'll do my best for you and try to give you your moneys worth well and truly but No, I won't do everything you want especially if you get carried away or overly self centered and start making stupid requests.

I also have an adage that the only way to win in negotiations is be prepared to walk away and I always am. I remember loosing 2 clients many years ago fairly close together because they made unrealistic demands. One was my fastest ever interview. It was a young upstart wanna be photographer getting married that came in and bragged about his wedding, the 17 hour coverage he wanted and told me they were only going to pay $1000 for someone to shoot it.
I closed my Book, stood up and said well don't let me hold you up from keeping looking.
He did the fish out of water thing, the fiancee was clearly pissed and told him not to be so rude and I was already opening the door.

This guy and the other bride that thought she was a real life Barbie doll getting married and a cut above Royalty Both ended up booking a mate of mine that had just made the leap to full time and was a bit more flexible ( desperate) than he should have been.

When I found out he had booked these couples, both times I warned him not to go there. I told him with the 2nd one, the wanna be shooter, he would be just like barbie but he wouldn't turn it down. They gave him endless grief when he had done nothing wrong and he admitted ended up costing him more than they paid.... which was what I could see happening and was afraid of all along.

Another adage of mine is I don't have to work hard to earn nothing, I can earn the exact same amount sitting on my fat backside on my comfy couch in front of the TV .

Regardless of the client type, it's SO important to be able to say NO and realise the thing of the customer always being right is about the most stupid saying ever coined. Business is business and you have to run yours like one. IT always seems people will try to screw over the little guy to get more that they would never ask of big business and I think the fact so many one man shows won't say know has a lot to do with it.

It's one thing to give good service, it's just one step away from being used as a door mat if you don't draw a very distinct Line. Sometimes that's not easy as the requests and inconveniences can sneak up on you but it's important to know when enough is enough.



Jun 13, 2017 at 06:08 PM
 

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JWilsonphoto
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p.2 #6 · p.2 #6 · Client was late! Missed golden hour.


Exaaaactly!


Jun 13, 2017 at 11:18 PM
padrelar
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p.2 #7 · p.2 #7 · Client was late! Missed golden hour.


Most people are already conditioned by dealing with other professionals working on an appointment basis to expect a certain amount of time late results in a charge and an appointment reset (doctor and dentist offices for instance) so I do not see where putting something in the contract would be a problem. It might even be of benefit as it highlights your work as an actual profession worthy of the same respect as any other professional.


Jul 04, 2017 at 03:29 PM
TheRoosta
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p.2 #8 · p.2 #8 · Client was late! Missed golden hour.


You were on to the right idea with your original question, regarding the contactual obligation on both parties. Attending the session at the allotted time is a fundamental obligation. You might want to recommending turning up 15 mins early (assuming you don't book appointments one on top of the other) and stress the importance of lighting conditions associated with the timing of the shoot. There's no reason that I can think of that would prevent you from including a clause that states that 30 mins after the agreed start time if the client has not appeared it would be considered a no-show, and they would therefore forfeit any deposit plus a portion of the cost of the shoot. Naturally you could include a re-booking fee if you felt inclined to try another date. Unfortunately, being accommodating, like you were, isn't always the best solution.

If it were me, I would offer the client a second opportunity. It's always better to compromise at the expense of losing a reputation.



Jul 04, 2017 at 03:52 PM
echelonphoto
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p.2 #9 · p.2 #9 · Client was late! Missed golden hour.


in my younger days...I did a wedding which began 2 hours late....then when it came time for the vows...it was found that the couple did not have a marriage license! So much for good planning.


Jul 18, 2017 at 12:24 AM
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