If you are a photographer, how’d you judge what’s your competition like? Most probably, you’ll visit their websites and see what all they’re offering. You’ll also see the kind of samples they’ve put out, such as the quality of their photographs, the kind of retouching they do, and the like. You’ll also get to gauge the kind of money they’re charging for, say, retouching, etc.
Irene Rudnyk, a professional photographer from Canada, found a unique way to find it out. Her primary focus was on the quality of retouching vis a vis its pricing. For this, Irene visited a freelance services website, Fiverr to search for those offering retouching services.
Irene was aghast to find that the cut-throat competition has made some desperate photographers charge as low as $0.25 for a retouch! However, she also found many sites charging to the tune of $5 to $10 and even more.
This price variation made Irene curious, so she decided to investigate further. She set out to compare the quality of retouching by choosing three retouchers randomly – one that charged just $0.25 and two others charging $5 and $10 a picture, respectively.
Irene looked for the star ratings and found that the one charging $5 had 1,792 five-star rating and promised to do the job in one day, while the one charging $10 had 252 five-star rating and he asked for two days. There were too many of the cheaper variety, so she went in for the first one she encountered on Fiverr.
Irene provided these three with an unedited image of a woman, who had really good skin that required minimal retouching. She wanted to find out what they’d do with it. Her instructions were simple, “I’d like if you made this image very vibrant, warm. Clean skin, bright eyes and make her hair look redder, so it matches the background. Also, I trust your judgment on making this image look beautiful.”
Irene compared the three retouching submissions. The one that charged $0.25 made the image look something out of the movie ‘Shrek’ and also made her burst out laughing. The $5 one really impressed her. However, the one charging $10 was a bit of a disappointment for her, as the image was retouched in gaudy colours to make it look vibrant.
Finally, Irene showed her retouching of the same image that was, without doubt, the best. How’s that for self-promotion! One thing she did prove through this experiment is ‘you don’t always get what you pay for’.
The $0.25 Retouching Job
The $5 Retouching Job
The $10 Retouching Job
Rudnyk’s Retouched Work