"Hey, I ain't cheap, but I CAN be had..."
I loved Michael Douglas' performance in Romancing the Stone.
But he had a point there.
As beautiful as Kathleen Turner was, Michael Douglas had to stop his life to help her, and got paid fairly for it.... but you can watch the movie yourself.
Commercial photography is demanding and expensive to purchase and to produce - if you want decent images, that is. Anybody can take a snapshot, but the problem is, it looks just like that, a snapshot. I am in the business of creating, not "taking", great images. They can be group photos for Cornell University, product photos for Lucienne's Gourmet Biscotti and Amazing Chocolates, advertising pieces for Wells College or catalog images for AirSoft weapons.
Each session is different and challenging. Each requires a specific set of equipment and staff, each client has specific needs that we strive to meet and exceed. Our guaranty is simple. Our clients will be delighted - not just "satisfied". We will do whatever is necessary to keep our clients "delighted". It makes for good business relationships, which frequently turn into wonderful personal relationships.
Photography is only one piece of the final product for any commercial application. If the company is large, they may already have a design and print shop in house. Smaller companies will farm their work out to local independent graphic artists and designers to complete their projects.
I personally have several graphic artists and designers that I love to work with, whose styles meet and complement my own, and vice versa. Publications and advertising pieces we create together have a special feel BECAUSE of the relationships we share.
This whole thing about relationships and prices and contacts is not limited to commercial photography. Wedding clients in particular are hiring GWCs, or "Guys With Cameras" who think that because they have a cool camera, that they can do as well as a seasoned pro.
Well, you get what you pay for.