Vasko Photography - The Blog

The Articles


I've decided to try something new. Up until this point I've kept my rates hidden. If a model is interested in booking a shoot I'll send her a link to my rates page and we progress from there. I've noticed a lot of other photographers keep their rates hidden too. Why do we do this? I was thinking about it this morning. It makes no sense. I get so annoyed when I 'm in a store or on a webpage and prices aren't listed. Then I realized i'm one of those people too. lol. So I had a think on it and realized that it's foolish not to post my rates. So here they are. I increase my rates every year little by little as I establish myself as a signature brand photographer. The way I see it, if you just want a photo than go shoot with any photographer, but if you want a "Vasko Shot" then you're talking about a unique photography experience created by one of Toronto's up and coming talents. You get a creative photo, a "Vasko Shot" that means something, and I feel that has value. These are my rates for anybody looking to book a shoot were the images are for "personal use". My commercial photography rates are totally different animal.

More info on my packages can be found here --->Pricing packages for 2012

If you're interested in booking a shoot drop me an email and we'll get the ball rolling. 

Posted by: Vasko Photography

    OK ladies and jellybeans Happy Holidays. Just wanted to pass this linked blog post along. It was posted in a facebook group by a fellow photographer. I thought It was pretty relevant so I'm posting it up here on my blog for those of you who follow. If you shoot wedding videos or are involved in the production of wedding videos it's worth a read. Apparently music labels are now suing wedding photography companies who use copyrighted songs without proper licensing. I guess the labels realized that there's big money in weddings and they want their share. I totally understand where they are coming from. I would be really unhappy if somebody was using my work without proper licensing. It's almost a bitter sweet feeling. On one hand I'm sure the bands probably will not see much of the licensing fee money or much of the money the labels get from suing for damages. However, on the other hand I am a huge advocate of artists of all kinds being paid for their work. So even if the music labels do take the lion's share of the pie I still agree with their action based on the principle that copyrighted work MUST be licensed. For most photographers licensing is at the core of our business. We don't shoot pictures for a living, we licence pictures for a living. But that's a discussion for another time.

    Check out the link:

    Posted by: Vasko Photography

      Cost of Doing Business

      September 28, 2011

      How do you set your photography fees?

      I came across this video today in one of the Facebook groups I'm a part of. It talks about several important concepts regarding running your photography business. It looks at calculating your 'Daily cost of doing business' and how to factor that into your photography fees and licensing fees. The video has a lot of great visuals and for a visual learner like me it's fantastic. It's really worth watching if you want to take your photography more seriously.  

      Posted by: Vasko Photography

        Video project is underway

        September 15, 2011

        My colleague, Peter Finnie and I just wrapped up our first day of video shooting for the copyright and licensing series we're putting together. I'm totally excited about the project.

        We were sitting around chatting about licensing one day and a thunderbolt hit us. There are tons of tutorials and workshops out there on how to improve your photography technique and post production but there's relatively little information about how to improve your "photography business". So we challenged ourselves to put together a series of YouTube videos that explore the business end of photography. We hope it becomes a helpful tool for those of you who are trying to wrap your heads around the business side of the industry. Looking back on things now, I certainly wish I had somebody pointing most of this stuff out to me, back when I was first starting out. In today's climate of self-taught photographers and weekend professionals there seems to be an unbalanced knowledge base. We're heavy on the photography tips and tricks and lean on proper business practices. As a result there are too many photographers undervaluing their work and sometimes even give their work away for free. That's a culture we're hoping to change by sharing knowledge.   

        The series is going to focus mainly on copyright, image usage and licensing. We're going to explore how the three concepts work together to generate profit for your photography business. What we are hoping to do with these videos is generate some sort of dialogue between photographers because if there is one thing that we both personally advocate, it’s the sharing of knowledge between people in the industry. No time line has been set yet with respect to a launch date. But hopefully if we don’t get too busy with clients we’ll be able to go live in October. Stay tuned for updates.

        Posted by: Vasko Photography

        Licensing & Usage

        August 26, 2011

        Image licensing and usage are topics seldom talked about by photographers even though they are at the very core of what we do. This is going to be the first of a series of blog posts that looks at licensing images and usage rights. Hopefully it generates some discussion and we can all benefit with some better knowledge on the subject.

        Photographers are in the business of selling images and that's the simple black and white truth about it. Some of us do it for art's sake. But even the artist has to pay the bills. I personally believe, and feel free to disagree with me if you like, but I believe that if you have a business card that says “photographer” than you should be earning money whenever you pull out your camera. There will be exceptions such as TF shoots, working with family or friends and personal projects. But for the most part, if your shutter is clicking your bank account should be ch-ching-ing.  I don't shoot things for a living and I don't take pictures for a living, I sell images for a living. This is the philosophy I want to bring to bring to light and understanding image licensing and usage rights is a big part of that philosophy. 

        I'm going to share a story with you. A model booked me for a fashion shoot a little while ago. She said she had some funky outfits she wanted to shoot in. I said great. Shoot goes really well model is excited. Than as we're looking at the pictures and she asks me how long it will take to edit the shots because the fashion designer whom she borrowed the outfit from wanted un-watermarked  shots for her webpage. Now this completely changed the nature of the ballgame. Image usage went from personal use (portfolio work) to commercial use (promoting the designer's business). I had to explain to the model that if the designer wanted to use the images she would have to licensing them from me. Naturally the model wasn't too excited by this and I felt like the bad guy. So I had to explain the photographer's position. Photographers are in the business of selling images. That's how we pay our bills. You wouldn't walk into a restaurant and expect to eat for free so what makes you think photographers would give their work away for free? Especially to someone who wants to use their image to generate profits through online marketing. After a little bit of explaining the model began to understand the concept of licensing. Up until that point she had no idea how image licensing and copyright worked. In the end the designer licensed the image, the model got great portfolio shots and I walked away not feeling cheated. 

        So in closing I want to make three points. 1) Selling images is our business. 2) Clarify image usage with your client before the shoot and don't be afraid to talk about licensing options if necessary  3) It is our responsibility to educate our clients about image usage and licensing because most of the time they don't know.

        This was typed with my iPhone and my thumb is very sore now. lol. 

        For you Toronto area photographers there is a group on Facebook were us TO Photogs get together to share ideas. LINK

        Posted by: Vasko Photography