Whereas photo sessions may last anywhere from 1 - 2 hours, the work doesn't stop there! In fact, the post production process is where 50% to 70% of the total time is spent on most of my clients. Sure, time on-site and behind the camera is important, but the bulk of my time is spent behind the scenes in post. This process includes sorting through hundreds (or thousands, in some cases) of photos, choosing the best ones to refine, and then presenting the final images to you - the client.
Once the best photos from the session have been chosen, I then make a number of adjustments as necessary. This includes, but is not limited to, cropping for optimal composition, noise reduction, color correction and sharpening. I also explore custom finishes based on the mood, setting or look/feel that I think best suits certain images or the session as a whole. SOOC (straight out of camera) colors are great, but quite often images can be improved by adding a little "pop" or converting them to black and white. After years of using applications like Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom, I've built a vast library of "recipes" that I can apply to images to make them come alive.
In my opinion, the post production process is just as critical as the actual photo session itself!
So why do you care? Truth is, you probably don't. But for whatever reasons, there can be a lot of head-scratching or confusion when it comes to understanding the fees and/or pricing that we photographers charge for our products and services. It's not just about showing up, taking the pictures and then uploading them for our clients to purchase. A lot of time and effort goes into each and every session...before, during and after...and this is why we set the fees and pricing like we do.
I can only speak for myself when I say this, but I mean each and every word: YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR!