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Tony3d
04-29-2015, 08:03 AM
Hi All, I'm just wondering if you can give me an idea how much I should be charging for renderings of this quality? I did all the modeling and rendering. What hourly rate is fair, and what do you think the final cost should be. I'm just using these as an example. Thanks.

lightman
04-29-2015, 10:13 AM
I find that what you can get is really dependent on the client. I get way more money when I do work for an ad agency as their budgets are bigger because usually it's a nation client. Most small companies have small budgets and want it done quick and dirty and are not so concerned about having the best quality as long as it looks ok.
Price wise it really does vary by region.

Tony3d
04-29-2015, 11:08 AM
Let me ask you this. What would be the bare minimum you would charge to model just what you see there?

shrox
04-29-2015, 11:11 AM
Let me ask you this. What would be the bare minimum you would charge to model just what you see there?

There is no "guide" for pricing look at Turbosquid, some good stuff is free, some pay stuff is crap.

Dan Ritchie
04-29-2015, 11:17 AM
Charge twice what it's worth to you, and get half up front. On the off chance that you collect the second half, your one up.

Tony3d
04-29-2015, 11:18 AM
So how does one set a fair price? There must be some guidelines based on skill or whatever.

Dan Ritchie
04-29-2015, 11:38 AM
Don't bring skill into it. People deserve to get paid for their work. Anyway the illustrations look wonderful.

- - - Updated - - -

Don't bring skill into it. People deserve to get paid for their work. Anyway the illustrations look wonderful.

Tony3d
04-29-2015, 11:40 AM
Ok, leaving skill out of it, how does one charge for these things?

ernpchan
04-29-2015, 11:43 AM
Ok, leaving skill out of it, how does one charge for these things?

How many hours did it take you? That should give you a starting number.

time * rate = cost

Tony3d
04-29-2015, 01:11 PM
I'm guessing the turntable took about 14 hours including all test renders. Still doesn't tell me what my hourly rate should be. How does one arrive at that?

ernpchan
04-29-2015, 01:14 PM
I'm guessing the turntable took about 14 hours including all test renders. Still doesn't tell me what my hourly rate should be. How does one arrive at that?

Well, how much do you think your time is worth?

You could try googling freelance rates. They're all over the place though depending on region and a person's experience.

shrox
04-29-2015, 01:16 PM
$15-$120 an hour.

johnliebler
04-29-2015, 01:26 PM
It is a good idea to divorce yourself from the idea of charging an hourly rate. There is a lot more to work than how long it takes. For example, you are doing really well, and you buy an expensive new computer that goes twice as fast as your old one, so the average job takes half as long as it did with your old machine. Do you you charge half as much for the work? Or you work for years getting faster and more efficient, Should you be charging less than you did when you first started out? You should know how much you need to get paid per hour to make work profitable, but that is only to establish a "bottom line" of the lowest price you can charge before you are losing money.

Art and animations are commodities and should be priced as such. As lightman says, a national ad campaign should be worth more than a local TV spot, regardless of the hours spent. An exception is if you are freelancing on contract to a studio, where your pay can be considered more of a "wage". The Graphic Artists Guild "Pricing and Ethical Guidelines" is an excellent reference for questions like this. You can look up the average prices for similar work in the field you are working in, and charge accordingly. Even if you don't get as much as the book lists, it will give you a good idea of relative prices for different uses.

And yes, those are nice looking renders! :)

raymondtrace
04-29-2015, 01:53 PM
I agree with John.

Focus on a project price first. A client is not going to know it will take you ___ hours to make an image. They only want the product. You're the expert that is going to be able to price the project based on your known expense.

You should still specify an hourly rate for work done outside of the original specification, after you have fulfilled the project goals.

One other important thing you should define in your terms of service/sale is how much the client owns for the price they pay. Do you turn over all assets (models, scene file, textures) or just the rendered image? Maybe you're using assets (textures/fonts/photos) that are not licensed to be passed along to a client. Make sure all that is explained in your contract.

Ryan Roye
04-29-2015, 02:01 PM
If you can't make at least $30/hr equivalent or more, the work being done is unsustainable. Think about how much time is spent doing non-work related stuff as well in regards to studios/clients:

- Negotiating your contract
- Discussing the project
- Machine hours (Rendering, using your internet service to transfer large files, etc)
- Research and Development time (not all problems are cut-and-dry)
- The years and funding it required to acquire the skills, hardware and software you've earned
- etc.

The above is where most people stumble... you need to price your rate in consideration for the above points or else your wage will be beaten by fast food service employees.


It is a good idea to divorce yourself from the idea of charging an hourly rate.

This is important. Instead, one should think in terms of how long the task is expected to take based on previous experience on similar topics. If you don't know how much you can do in a day, you need more hands-on experience.

erikals
04-29-2015, 02:20 PM
1. don't sell yourself short


http://forums.newtek.com/images/misc/quote_icon.pngshrox    $15-$120 an hour
agree, it really depends on who you work for.
like Chazriker i think that $30 is a minimum, unless it's a hobby...

also remember that if you sell yourself short, you'll end up continue doing just that for the same client

Tony3d
04-29-2015, 02:26 PM
ok, these are all very good suggestions! Thanks for the input. It helps.

digitaldoc
04-29-2015, 02:36 PM
I worked on a project for over one year with promises of payment including contracts and ended up making about 2 cents an hour. Good luck. There are a lot of folks out there who will take advantage of you including big companies.

motivalex
04-29-2015, 07:29 PM
Don't be fooled. It's business and some clients will be your best friend to get you down to one dollar an hour.

"I know it's outside what we agreed, but can you do this little tiny extra thing for free that should only take 4 weeks to do" :)

Good renders and you should not charge less than 240 dollars a day. More really.

You got rent to pay. One day (if not already) kids to clothe and feed. Software and hardware to buy and upgrade. Bills. Holidays. Reserve money when you are ill and can't work. Replacing the car, fridge, washing machine when they blow up. What are you going to live on when you are 120 and retiired? Spending money for hobbies and treats. All this to think about and more when you charge. Many will say they have a limited budget, to try and get you to charge as least as possible so they can maxmise their profits.

I did a animation for a media company and charged about £7000 for it a while back as a freelancer. I discovered that they charged their client for that work I did the sum of £30,000.

So value your work and yourself.

Davewriter
04-29-2015, 08:06 PM
A friend did some work and thought it would be a good thing to break things down in the invoice, just so the customer would know what he was buying.
Oh Boy!
All it did was give the customer reasons for nitpicking.
"This much money for just...?" It never seemed to end.
And with most clients having no idea what magic you are performing anyway, no sense in causing yourself a problem.

erikals
04-30-2015, 12:36 AM
thought it would be a good thing to break things down in the invoice
this is interesting, maybe the invoice should have been leaning more onto the 3D work only...

sukardi
04-30-2015, 01:09 AM
I found out the hard way through experience never to charge below whatever rate that you set. These days if I feel so strongly about helping a friend/client, I would rather do stuff for free rather than charging a cut price rate.. :)

vonpietro
04-30-2015, 01:48 AM
the average 3d artist makes between 800 and 3000 a week. - 160 - 600 a day. 20 to 75 an hour.

Tony3d
04-30-2015, 04:54 AM
Good. Then I'm charging $85.00 an hour. LOL!

Tony3d
04-30-2015, 07:06 AM
Ok, based on everything everyone has told me I'm figuring this turntable rendering is worth $1,125.00 based on 15 hours of work, which is probably low. Does this sound acceptable? I mean these high end turntable manufactures are not afraid to charge 10 times that for their product, and it was a lot of tweaking.

erikals
04-30-2015, 07:24 AM
does sound good to me,

p.s. note that i personally would go for an Octane render for product renders,
they often look a bit better due to how Octane operates

might be something for the next project ?

Tony3d
04-30-2015, 07:40 AM
does sound good to me,

p.s. note that i personally would go for an Octane render for product renders,
they often look a bit better due to how Octane operates

might be something for the next project ?

How much is that? Where do I find info on it? Did this render in lightwave 11.0. it would look better than this? in what ways? zoom in there is a lot of resolution.

erikals
04-30-2015, 07:52 AM
yes, would look better, though of course everything can be tweaked/PhotoShop'ed

http://home.otoy.com/render/octane-render/purchase
OctaneRender for LightWave is 439 €

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hAw3Qvk85ag
https://www.youtube.com/user/OfficialLightWave3D/search?query=Octane

Tony3d
04-30-2015, 08:12 AM
Does it run on a Mac Pro? What's the learning curve like?

Chernoby
04-30-2015, 10:42 AM
These things really should be done before the work is begun:)

Per hour vs up front budget is tricky. If you have not been doing it long enough to know what is the "sweet spot" for time/quality/client expectations then sometimes you have to do hourly but I agree that 'by the hour' is problematic.

Pricing for client tips:
Budgeting production work (3d modeling included) is totally relative. With budgeting always try and put it back on the client or third-party hiring you out by simply asking,"What is your budget?" If they don't know or won't answer, then prime them with reciting what fair going rates are currently (and keep it on the high end of the "fair" spectrum). Then you have set a precedent where you are removed from responsibility and the market has determined cost. At that point if you walk back any pricing it will be a gesture of goodwill on your part. It will also suss out whether or not they have a ridiculously low valuation of your services. If the quote is higher than your expectations then you can take the time to give them a product with the quality equivalent to their budget.

kopperdrake
05-06-2015, 01:50 PM
The advice I was given waaaaay back to work out an hourly rate was decide how much you would like as an annual salary - you can get an idea of that from various adverts for jobs etc. Then as a freelancer multiply it by two, then divide by the number of hours you're going to work that year. The "times by two" helps account for the time spent looking for work, buying kit, experimenting and doing the paperwork.

I'd say your price was in the right ballpark, but then clients also pay for the more nebulous aspects of a project - the artistic input, the flare - the knowledge of their product or products in general, market knowledge, production methods knowledge. Some don't just want a product render, they want a marketing spin on it, which takes a deeper knowledge of the intended viewer(s). And then some clients have big budgets and want it NOW, others have less money but don't mind if you squeeze their projects in amongst others. It really is a minefield, and at the end of the day only you will find out what *your* clients will like to pay for the kind of job *you* deliver. The secret is to know when someone's trying it on, but that comes with experience.

Nice renders by the way :)

Tony3d
05-06-2015, 03:12 PM
The advice I was given waaaaay back to work out an hourly rate was decide how much you would like as an annual salary - you can get an idea of that from various adverts for jobs etc. Then as a freelancer multiply it by two, then divide by the number of hours you're going to work that year. The "times by two" helps account for the time spent looking for work, buying kit, experimenting and doing the paperwork.

I'd say your price was in the right ballpark, but then clients also pay for the more nebulous aspects of a project - the artistic input, the flare - the knowledge of their product or products in general, market knowledge, production methods knowledge. Some don't just want a product render, they want a marketing spin on it, which takes a deeper knowledge of the intended viewer(s). And then some clients have big budgets and want it NOW, others have less money but don't mind if you squeeze their projects in amongst others. It really is a minefield, and at the end of the day only you will find out what *your* clients will like to pay for the kind of job *you* deliver. The secret is to know when someone's trying it on, but that comes with experience.

Nice renders by the way :)

Thanks for the input!

jasonwestmas
05-06-2015, 03:16 PM
30 american dollars an hour is standard here.

spherical
05-06-2015, 05:31 PM
The "times by two" helps account for the time spent looking for work, buying kit, experimenting and doing the paperwork.

In my long years of running a business, I've come to realize that it also counters the tendency to underestimate what it will actually take to do the job. :) The problem with quoting is that you are competing against yourself, incrementally lowering the bid to ensure that you get the job. You have to have conviction and also the guts to stand behind them, or you end up "outsourcing" to yourself. The main thing to recognize is that there's always someone in town who will do it for nothing. I realized long ago that that person was not going to be me.

Determine the absolute least that you will EVER take per-hour or per-job and stick to it. Don't tell anyone what those numbers are; just walk away if the estimate gets anywhere near them. Then, take those numbers multiplied by 3 and quote that as a minimum, right out of the gate. This weeds out the bottom feeders. If they're still standing there after that arrives, I'll invest the time and effort to come up with a serious quote. Otherwise, they're just wasting your time—and time is money. Every one of those red herrings that you allow, lowers the aggregate amount that you will make over time.

Another thing to remember is something I counseled a shop owner friend of mine with: "They'll always ask for a lower price; until you say: no." It is just good business to try to get the best deal, but it often gets abused. It becomes their default way of dealing. Say "no" earlier and you are playing their game as hard as they are.

jasonwestmas
05-06-2015, 05:53 PM
Bidding sucks, only do it if you are desperate.

kopperdrake
05-07-2015, 08:41 AM
@Spherical: very true. As an image (I tend to do those most) are something you can really spend an infinite amount of time on, it is tempting to sometimes spend more on a project you really feel for, or want to impress for some reason. I do have a lower rate beyond which I will not go, and on occasion I choose to do a project for it as I like the project for some reason. If a potential client 'haggles' in order to get to a lower price, the nearer they get to that price, the less 'spare' time will be thrown at it. It's the same for every walk of life I guess.

The best clients are those who know your true value, and you can discuss honestly the budget. The best clients are those that appreciate you for what you bring to the table in terms of finished goods, how you handle yourself, and will also be honest about budget. They are also, selfishly, those that will not mind cutting their cloth accordingly - if their budget won't stretch, they will ask what *can* they have for the budget. The old adage, "Pick two of the following - quick, cheap, good, because you can't have all three" is something I firmly believe in. For good clients, and thankfully after a time in business you end up working only with the good ones as you can spot the not-so-good quite quickly, they expect a good job for a fair price. Sometimes it's crazy quick and they have the budget for that, sometimes they don't, but if you have a good working relationship with them then you *will* go out of your way to help them out - that's the nature of this business.

@jasonwestmas: again, very true. I tried that about three times a while ago, and after the third time vowed never to spend the time doing it again. Just wasn't worth the hassle. A client can see your work, they know the price, they can decide if they like your work enough to pay you for it. If the other chap is cheaper and starts getting work from yuo, then at some stage he will have the same problem of overheads/family etc and he too will have to raise his cost to a reasonable level. In the long haul it's more about personal (and corporate) relationships and understanding your brief well. Trust is the biggest asset - the trust you will hit the deadline, on budget, and to at least the standard expected.

Ryan Roye
05-07-2015, 09:01 AM
@jasonwestmas: again, very true.

Truth. In my earlier days (when I was a 2d artist/web designer), I'd sit through hours of conversations that would end with the client trying to haggle my price down. No one is paying you for that time; you need to filter out the "bottom of the barrel" customers. If you have a website advertising your services, you don't want just any average joe contacting you, otherwise it invites bottom-of-the-barrel folks.

khan973
05-07-2015, 11:31 PM
Hi,
When it comes to rates, it's always hard to answer.
It depends on how much you're an expert.
A beginner taking 10 hrs to do something an expert will do in 3 hrs shouldn't cost more as the result would probably not be better than the expert.
Value your experience and learn to compare to others.
Also it depends on where you live, the bigger the city, the higher the prices. The reason is fairly simple.
To calculate your rate, you have to consider what's the rate that makes you earn and not lose money and it's different for each person.
Let's say you need a motorcycle to go to work, you need to pay phone, insurance, maybe a rent and so on.
If you need 1500$ to pay everything, you add taxes over this then you have a number. Divide this number by 20 days (unless you want to work 7/7) then you have the minimum you can ask by day.
After a while, you can see if you work 40%, 60%, 80% of the month/ year and adjust your rate.
If you do this and manage to have recurrent projects, you know you'll always have enough to live.
In France, our taxes are high so our prices are too.
A freelancer is between 350 and 450€ a day and a company, between 450€ / 800€ a day depending on the type of client, resolution (4K films require more texturing, rendering, post-processing, hight level computers...).

There is no exact science, you just have to have a system that lets you know when you earn money and when you lose money, otherwise it can hurt after a wile and when rising your prices, you might lose a lot of clients.
I recommend that you create an Excel of your expenses / prices to keep track of your rate and compare to reality to adjust reasonably.

Knowing how much you charge is a responsibility. We are a community and having low prices because you don't know how to value yourself affects the market. So be wise ;)

allabulle
05-14-2015, 10:30 AM
(...) Sometimes it's crazy quick and they have the budget for that, sometimes they don't, but if you have a good working relationship with them then you *will* go out of your way to help them out - that's the nature of this business.

In this kind of situations, which sometimes makes business sense, I agree, I send the bill with the proper price in it anyway, but I add the necessary discount so it matches the price they can afford this time. Even if it's for free, I bill it, and then add a 100% discount. It tells you made a discount, not that your time hasn't value or you are cheap. It also helps as a reminder for them when the next job comes around: you aren't just irrationally asking much more money for the same thing they may remember cheaper, you made a gift, courtesy, promotion or whatever we want to call it.

JonW
05-15-2015, 04:16 AM
Customers who are easy to work with, a bit less. Customers that are or give the appearance of being painful in ANY respect, no price is too high. Or simply say you are too busy, let someone else torture themselves to death!

When someone's first question is how much, I let others take on their work.