How much should I pay a model?

I have a small business, and have to put together some advertising and images for my web site. Rather than use stock photos, I was thinking about bringing in a model and taking some shots myself. I don’t have a lot of money to spend on such a venture, but I want to be fair. What would be a good price that is fair to both of us?

The woman I have in mind has never posed before, so she has no experience, if that matters.

I imagine that all that’s involved is per-hour rate for the time spent taking the pictures, but if there is more to it than that, I’d love to hear about it.

As well as paying her, you need to get her to sign a model release form, allowing you to use her pictures in your ads.

I have no idea, so I googled the question. Some NSFW sites came up! :eek:

The one agency that showed a rate sheet listed $10-200 per hour. Hope that helps! :dubious:

In addition to pay, you might want to offer her copies of the pictures for her portfolio, if she is thinking about starting one.

Definitely get her to sign a release. You can google “standard adult model release” for a basic one. (Note, “adult” doesn’t mean “adult” (wink) modeling. An adult model release is different from a child model release.)

If she has no experience but is trying to put together a portfolio, you can offer TFP: Time For Prints. She poses for free and you provide her with high-quality print (and these days, electronic) copies (8x10) of a certain number of pre-agreed-upon pictures. This assumes your pictures are going to be of a high-enough quality that she’d include them in a portfolio. If you are not actually a photographer (either professional or professionally trained or at least damn good), then it’s unfair to offer what are really “snapshots” in exchange for modeling. Also, even if you pay her, you should work out a print deal anyway. You’d still provide some but maybe not as many as under TFP, although some photographers pay AND give copies of all prints.

If you just want to pay her anyway, and she’s got no experience, I’d say at least $20 per hour. Maybe $25.

I’d say $50-$100 an hour. I can’t imagine it would be worth anyone’s time to show up for $20.

I’d say for someone who knows what she’s doing for pictures taken by a professional that at least $50 is reasonable. But she has no experience and the OP sounds more like these are going to be background shots for a Web site, not pictures that he is going to use for his own portfolio, where he will in effect be making future money off her? Maybe I am misinterpreting.

$100 an hour for a zero-experience model for editorial shots is way too much to pay, in my opinion. $20 is probably a little low, you’re right. $25, at least, seems more like it to me. This depends on the area too; even “inexperienced” in New York is going to cost you a lot more than $25/hour, unless you do TFP, which is very common. Then you pay nothing and the model is happy to have her pictures taken, but this presumes you are a professional photographer.

I agree, you need to offer her like $100 just to show and then an hourly rate on top of that. Anything else just wouldn’t be professional.
So, if she’s there for two hours then you would pay her the $100 plus the $25/hr for a total of $150.

You’re correct…I’ll be using the pictures for the web site, as well as possibly some postcard mailings. I don’t plan on selling the pictures for use by others.

Also, I am not a professional photographer, but I hope to get one of my friends with more experience to help out. I do plan to offer the model digital copies of some of the photos, in case she wants to start a portfolio of her own.

Excellent suggestion regarding the release agreement. I’ll have to do that.

I think it’s a great idea to pay her something just for showing up. I’d want to put that and the hourly rate on the contract. What should I call that in the contract, instead of “Money you get just for showing up”? :stuck_out_tongue:

Pepper Mill is a photographer in the Lynn Photographic Society. She says $30-40/hour for non-professional models.

I remember a story from several years ago, about nude models who worked at a design school who went on strike for better pay. I think this story fragment, which can’t be read in its entirety without registering, which I won’t do, is about that incident. But the part you can read claims such models earn about $11 per hour.

Ah, here’s another link about the models’ attempt to unionize.

Why don’t you just proposition her with the idea and then ask her how much she would charge for something like that? That would be one way of figuring out the “appropriate” amount for the job.

Personally, if someone wanted to take my picture and use it all over his website and mailings I would expect to be paid no less than $200. But then, I’m experienced and I don’t come cheap. :wink:

Damn! I was going to offer you $199.95. But, next time you’re in Cincinnati let me know and we’ll see if we can work out a compromise :stuck_out_tongue: