Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2001/01/03

[Author Prev] [Author Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next] [Author Index] [Topic Index] [Home] [Search]

Subject: Re: [Leica] an appeal to photographer (was re: tina's print pricing)
Date: 3 Jan 2001 13:35:19 -0800

On Wed, 03 January 2001, Kyle Cassidy wrote:
> join me in the fight against limited editions. well, me and HCB.

With much respect to you, I wholeheartedly DISAGREE on this issue.  Even as an amateur photographer who has never sold one print to anyone, I find the argument illogical, and ultimately cost the artists their own livelihood.

As we have often argued, there is little correlation between the perceived quality and the price.  Quality is purely subjective based on emotion, and price is just a number.  Price is merely a number that represents the highest number of (currency unit) that someone is willing to pay for the given product, and has little to do with the cost of production.  If the cost of production is greater than the price, the product ceases to exist.

So what I can make archivally processed 8x10 prints for less than $1/print in my darkroom?  It is nothing compared to the other associated costs that were incurred in making the image: my time (in my previous job as a consultant, the consulting company charged more than the cost of an M6 body per day for my time), travelling cost, opportunity cost...  Oh, by the way, my $10,000 Leica stuff amortised over the number of prints I make, the film I burn... ad infinitum.  Printing cost is nothing anyway.  So, what if photographic artists had to sell their prints at $10/print?  They will all be starving in a few weeks, if not days.  The supply chain will dry up, and the price of prints in the secondary market will skyrocket.

Photography is a hobby for me, so I give away prints to those who are close to me, or those who contributed greatly towards making the image.  Knowing that those who receive my prints appreciate my work, my reward is the satisfaction that I created something that would be treasured by somebody I care about.  That's enough for me.