The key to billing for this


The key to billing for this is time: how much time will it take you to travel to and from each site, to shoot the necessary footage, interview artists, take the still shots and finally, to edit, review and deliver the material. You'll have to estimate this carefully; don't under-estimate in favor of the client and try to come up with an honest estimate of how much time it will take. Then add 10-20% to be on the safe side.

Now decide how much your time and talent is worth and multiply that by the number of hours involved. Minimum wage is $13-15 per hour, depending on where in the U.S. you live. With your skills you're certainly worth twice that aren't you? Three times that wouldn't be asking too much at all. To put it in perspective, my company would charge $100 per hour with a four hour minimum for each day involved.

The best advice I can give you is to have a contract that spells out exactly what you are going to do for this client, how much it will cost and the terms for payment. Under no circumstances hand over any material until you have money in hand. Jobs like this have a way of going South: they sound like a great idea to a client at first, then become less and less important as the realities of completing them becomes evident. You don't want to be left having done a great deal of work and no payment for it and a well written contract will protect your inventment of time and talent.

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