How Much Do Headshots Cost?
So you've practiced in the mirror, picked out your outfit(s), and even figured out your makeup (or no makeup) situation. Now you're stuck on how much to spend.
This is an objective question and it varies depending on the photographer, and the area you live in.
Before you even decide on a budget look at where you live. If you're in New York City you're going to be paying almost double than you would if you're in Los Angeles (One Look in New York approx. $500-700+ vs. $300-$400+ in L.A.). If you live in L.A. you're going to spend a bit more than if you're in Orange County. One Look in L.A. generally about $300-$400+ vs. $200-$300+ for headshots in Orange County.
You Need More Than One
If you are calling a photographer asking for just one photo then know you're really asking for one look. We constantly receive calls from people who ask for a discount because they want one single photo, which is just not feasible.
This is because it takes more than one shutter click to get that perfect headshot. Not to mention all of the coaching, professional equipment, and studio costs.
So how much should you spend?
If you're looking for headshots in Orange County we recommend spending no less than $150 for one look. This is a reasonable price as long as you're sure the photographer is going to deliver the images you need, and the images that represent you (see our post on how to choose a photographer).
Be wary of paying less than $100; especially if you found the photographer on Craigslist. Craigslist is a great way to find FREE photoshoots for practice (you can sometimes get lucky and land a great pic too), but they generally aren't full-time pros. This means there's no recourse if they take your money and hand you crap.
What Should You Get?
This varies by the photographer. There's one item you should get at a minimum and that is one professionally retouched image. You should also receive at least one look (outfit) at the mentioned price tag.
When shooting headshots with Kemp Photography, we like to include water, an hour of session time, wardrobe assistance, posing coaching, a professionally retouched copy of your favorite shot, referral discounts, and return client discounts!
So now that you have a strong base to start with before you shoot, you should probably check out how to pick the right headshot photographer.