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Retoucher
Natalia_Taffarel
Posts: 7,665
Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina


Gulag wrote:
His diversification of his business and skillset into video color grading basically says his still image retouching revenue's been on decline.

Well that's quite a guess... His diversification of his business and skillset into video color grading only says that he decided to diversificate his business and skillset into video color grading. plain and simple.

Maybe because he saw a good niche, maybe because his true passion is color and video is another medium.... I don't know

May 03 13 03:23 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Gary Melton
Posts: 6,370
Dallas, Texas, US


...I thought I had an angle all figured out...I offered to retouch photos for $500,000 each (figuring I only had to do 2 or 3 to be in pretty good shape) - but you know what?  I didn't get even ONE taker on my offer!

smile
May 03 13 03:26 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Charlie-CNP
Posts: 2,604
New York, New York, US


OP: Essentially, you are asking a bigger question I think. You are asking how you start your own business pretty much. Prepare to work 80 hour weeks for 40 hours of pay, prepare to wear many hats and do things that you do not like to do in order to do what you love if re-touching is what you love, and have a huge nest egg stored away to fall back on just in case you are planning on doing this without a safety net.

Most people start a small business while working another job until they make what they made prior from the day job doing what they want to do in the start up. With that said though.... I don't mean to burst your bubble, but you are most likely not going to be rich financially by becoming a re-toucher or in most other jobs that you would start up as a small business.

If money is your number one goal in life, become a doctor, lawyer..etc. There are many more important things in life though than money. Find what you really enjoy doing for a career vs. just looking at it to buy things. As long as you make ends meat to pay the bills and sock a few bucks away here and there, it can be bliss. good luck
May 03 13 03:31 pm  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Krunoslav Stifter
Posts: 3,846
Santa Cruz, California, US


AlyssaDeLaura wrote:

Great reply! I could use this advice as well! smile

Working on it. wink

May 03 13 03:54 pm  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
srezy
Posts: 63
Stuttgart, Baden-Württemberg, Germany


Charlie-CNP wrote:
As long as you make ends meat to pay the bills...
The Invisible Touch wrote:
Doing what you love!! It's all about you!! Don't you feel rich enough??
Money isn't everything in this world! :-)

But it is essential - isn`t it!? Sorry but that are so stupid tips. Her question was if she can live a normal life with retouching, if she can also have enough money to travel abroad, to buy a car... Enough for just the normal things in life?

May 03 13 04:05 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
L A U B E N H E I M E R
Posts: 8,442
Seattle, Washington, US


Gary Melton wrote:
...I thought I had an angle all figured out...I offered to retouch photos for $500,000 each (figuring I only had to do 2 or 3 to be in pretty good shape) - but you know what?  I didn't get even ONE taker on my offer!

smile

seriously? that's too high a price.

May 03 13 04:11 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Gulag
Posts: 1,231
Duluth, Georgia, US


Natalia_Taffarel wrote:
Maybe because he saw a good niche, maybe because his true passion is color and video is another medium.... I don't know

If that was the case, he would have probably headed to Hollywood in the first place instead,  I would speculate.

May 03 13 04:23 pm  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
The Invisible Touch
Posts: 708
Tarragona, Catalonia, Spain


srezy wrote:
But it is essential - isn`t it!? Sorry but that are so stupid tips. Her question was if she can live a normal life with retouching, if she can also have enough money to travel abroad, to buy a car... Enough for just the normal things in life?

I think you have misread the OP's post!! Her original question was " Is it possible to become rich by retouching?" from there I repeat... Money isn't everything!!

Regarding making enough money to buy more than veggies and groceries.. Yes, it is possible but it requires to be persistent and lots of other skills which obviously everyone can acquire regarding retouching or any other job!!

Besides you weren't to happy with my tips to the OP... what's yours??

May 03 13 05:05 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Form and Pressure
Posts: 706
Auburn, Maine, US


ChristinaYu wrote:
I love what I’m doing, but the question is, if professional retoucher does really make money from that? To pay bills, to travel abroad, to buy a car etc.
Thanks’ for your replies

This guy has made enough to "pay bills, travel abroad buy a car etc"...
http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2008 … ct_collins

I guess it's up to you.

May 03 13 05:38 pm  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Mike Needham Retouching
Posts: 369
Cheltenham, England, United Kingdom


Is it possible to become rich by retouching?

Possible, yes. Probable, no.

May 03 13 06:43 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Chuckarelei
Posts: 9,306
Seattle, Washington, US


William Cox wrote:
This guy has made enough to "pay bills, travel abroad buy a car etc"...
http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2008 … ct_collins
I guess it's up to you.

One guy?

Bill Gates dropped out of college and became a billionaire. Are you suggesting people to do the same as 'one guy' is the norm?

May 03 13 06:52 pm  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Krunoslav Stifter
Posts: 3,846
Santa Cruz, California, US


Mike Needham Retouching wrote:
Possible, yes. Probable, no.

That sounds like you are playing lottery and not taking matters in your own hands.

Possible. Yes. Probable. Your destiny is in your hands. so it really matters more whether you believe you can do it or not than some external force. What you believe in is that you end up doing. So ultimately it depends on you - how probable it is or isn't. Simple as that. If you want it and you are prepared to work for it by doing the smart work and hard work and not only work hard - than it becomes only a matter of time. smile

Before you can make it happen you have to believe it's something you can do and that it is possible. Judging by the comments in this thread it seems there are a lot of people thinking it has to do with something that is beyond their control. Unfortunately for them; Those who think they can and those who think they can't are both right."

May 03 13 06:53 pm  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
FKW
Posts: 195
Jakarta, Jakarta, Indonesia


I really liked visual art (retouching, photography. ect )
I hope this industry can make a lot of money because beautiful women in my country love money sad
May 04 13 03:20 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
ChristinaYu
Posts: 69
Haifa, Haifa, Israel


Thank you for your posts...
Let's do a little counting,
Lets take one freelance retoucher with one head, two eyes and two hands, usually smile
in average one high end beauty image take up to 8 hours to complete with dodge&burn and all the techniques, the price is about 70$-80$ per image like that.
So, taking into account that you make image every day its 75$*28 days = 2100$
The conclusion is...
You should live in Thailand and work in US or UK
smile
May 04 13 07:15 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Natalia_Taffarel
Posts: 7,665
Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina


ChristinaYu wrote:
Thank you for your posts...
Let's do a little counting,
Lets take one freelance retoucher with one head, two eyes and two hands, usually smile
in average one high end beauty image take up to 8 hours to complete with dodge&burn and all the techniques, the price is about 70$-80$ per image like that.
So, taking into account that you make image every day its 75$*28 days = 2100$
The conclusion is...
You should live in Thailand and work in US or UK
smile

You have a few misconceptions.

1- Beauty doesn't always take 8 hours.
2- I CERTAINLY don't charge $80 per beauty image. Specially not commercial beauty smile

If you're doing averages, then yeah - But an "average" musician won't make its living out of music either.

May 04 13 07:21 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Natalia_Taffarel
Posts: 7,665
Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina


FKW wrote:
beautiful women in my country love money sad

That's so very sad... everything in your post is so very sad...

May 04 13 07:22 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Andrew Thomas Evans
Posts: 24,078
Toulon, Provence-Alpes-Côte-d'Azur, France


ChristinaYu wrote:
Hi guys!
I would like to discuss the material side of the business… in particular – retouching.
I’m retouching about 3 years, and having time to time some extra money from it, you know to buy milk and vegetables in grocery smile
I love what I’m doing, but the question is, if professional retoucher does really make money from that? To pay bills, to travel abroad, to buy a car etc.
Thanks’ for your replies

What's your definition of rich?

As a one person small business I think there are going to be some limits as to how much the market will let you charge and how much you can work. I'm not sure where those limits are, but if you're good you can make great money.

Down the road the trick is to turn your one person business into more of a retouching company with others working for you - more money. But then again I'm not sure if there is a market for that or how big the retouching market really is.




Andrew Thomas Evans
www.andrewthomasevans.com

May 04 13 07:25 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
FKW
Posts: 195
Jakarta, Jakarta, Indonesia


ChristinaYu wrote:
So, taking into account that you make image every day its 75$*28 days = 2100$

smile

wow that is a very fantastic number
even more than Mr. mayor salary

May 04 13 07:40 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Gulag
Posts: 1,231
Duluth, Georgia, US


Andrew Thomas Evans wrote:
As a one person small business I think there are going to be some limits as to how much the market will let you charge and how much you can work. I'm not sure where those limits are, but if you're good you can make great money.

Down the road the trick is to turn your one person business into more of a retouching company with others working for you - more money. But then again I'm not sure if there is a market for that or how big the retouching market really is.

I know a small company with less than 30 employees in my local area that is specialized in wedding image post-processing business. During the wedding season, they normally hire local students in art colleges and pay them minimum wage. These guys work in an assembly line fashion in LR. Seemingly the owner is doing pretty well financially.  If the goal is to make big bucks, you've got to exploit your employees, again I am referring to the truth revealed in Form 1040. Plain and simply.   But, the saddest truth is today's societies value "money" (aka "growth") more than anything else.

May 04 13 09:23 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
The Invisible Touch
Posts: 708
Tarragona, Catalonia, Spain


ChristinaYu wrote:
Let's do a little counting,
Lets take one freelance retoucher with one head, two eyes and two hands, usually smile
in average one high end beauty image take up to 8 hours to complete with dodge&burn and all the techniques, the price is about 70$-80$ per image like that.
So, taking into account that you make image every day its 75$*28 days = 2100$

I think there is a really misconception of this industry, as Natalia said, you don't have to spend 8 hours on every single beauty image, plus in my opinion. In some but very rarely even more but obviously that should be reflected in your price.

I think the world of retouching is not what it was. It has evolved, very rarely you are going to see the over retouched look on any magazine any more, at least "good" magazines, unless is cosmetic advertising! Now a days, less is more.. at least skin wise, focus your time on getting amazing colours rather than the perfect skin. That is the way forward!!

My point is that what you are making as a retoucher is a reflection of the hours & skills you are investing on that image and in my opinion that should be paid properly!!

Deliver quality work and learn how to charge properly is the key of a good business!!

Your motivation shouldn't be money, it should be producing the best you can!!

May 04 13 09:53 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Form and Pressure
Posts: 706
Auburn, Maine, US


Chuckarelei wrote:

One guy?

Bill Gates dropped out of college and became a billionaire. Are you suggesting people to do the same as 'one guy' is the norm?

She asked if it was possible. This guy shows that yes it is possible. I'm not suggesting anything...though I did write, "it's up to you". Like anything else in life, you get out what you put in.

May 04 13 10:02 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Gulag
Posts: 1,231
Duluth, Georgia, US


William Cox wrote:
She asked if it was possible. This guy shows that yes it is possible. I'm not suggesting anything...though I did write, "it's up to you". Like anything else in life, you get out what you put in.

Perhaps someone just conveniently forgot Bill's dad was loaded with money when he quit college. In fact, his dad funded Bill's MicroSoft with more than $5 mil at the time, which is equivalent to $20 million today.

On the other hand, there are times what you put in is not in proportion to what you get out in life.  Looking at all those failed artists in their lifetime confirms this simple truth. Rembrandt had to file bankruptcy, and later died in poverty even though he never stopped working on his personal work but nobody really wanted to hire him. His greatest masterpiece The Conspiracy of Claudius Civilis got rejected and he had to tear it apart.  How about Mark Rothko? He constantly improved himself, started his day at his studio every morning at 8 am,  putting in tons of labor. And he had to kill himself. The list can go on and on.

May 04 13 10:24 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
ChristinaYu
Posts: 69
Haifa, Haifa, Israel


Perhaps the key is to persist and to work effective both art & management skills, then you never know what kind of opportunities you can achieve
May 11 13 03:06 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
The Invisible Touch
Posts: 708
Tarragona, Catalonia, Spain


ChristinaYu wrote:
Perhaps the key is to persist and to work effective both art & management skills, then you never know what kind of opportunities you can achieve

That's exactly it!! You never know what's going to happen!! :-)

May 11 13 03:33 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Leonard Gee Photography
Posts: 16,101
Sacramento, California, US


ChristinaYu wrote:
Let's do a little counting,
Lets take one freelance retoucher with one head, two eyes and two hands, usually smile
in average one high end beauty image take up to 8 hours to complete with dodge&burn and all the techniques, the price is about 70$-80$ per image like that.
So, taking into account that you make image every day its 75$*28 days = 2100$
The Invisible Touch wrote:
I think there is a really misconception of this industry, as Natalia said, you don't have to spend 8 hours on every single beauty image, plus in my opinion. In some but very rarely even more but obviously that should be reflected in your price.

That's still assuming around the prices of a reasonably competent craftsman and the average jobs. Even at 2-3 hours per job, that's not going to get rich by US standards. I know of some specialists, one that does water drops and another doing cars and composites - they were doing national bill board and print ads for 2K - 5K per job and 3-5 jobs per week.

May 11 13 11:50 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Beale Retouching
Posts: 1
Santa Monica, California, US


I have been retouching for almost 30 years and I have made an excellent living from this business. It has enabled be to move from the UK and travel, eventually settling in Los Angeles. My goal was never to get rich doing it, my goal was to have a fulfilling creative life and do great work and work with interesting and creative people.
If a high salary is your goal then maybe a career in Law or Medicine might me more suitable. You can never guarantee financial wealth from creative endeavors even though that could and does happen. Making a good living and enjoying what you do everyday is for me paramount.
May 14 13 10:31 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Claudia Ambriz
Posts: 2
Ontario, California, US


Yes, it is possible to make a living out of retouching.  I've been doing it for 7+ years for a company and another year solely freelancing. I love it!  The trick is to not bring down the market by lowering your price too much.  If you have a talent you need to protect it and giving it value. Freebies are ok, if you're trying further your portfolio and want to include some extraordinary work. Just remember to always protect yourself because no one else is going to pay for your lifestyle.  Hope that helps!
May 14 13 12:03 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Oscar Partida
Posts: 730
San Diego, California, US


Everything is possible although not highly probable keeping in perspective what rich means today.

To make descent money ..yes it's possible
May 15 13 04:44 pm  Link  Quote 
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