I’ve dedicated my art practice to focusing on diversity, inclusion, and individuality, so it’s critical to me that my services are as widely available as possible.
We, as a culture, generally shy away from discussion of how money and access to resources play a role in our access to art and representation and how that interacts with race, gender, health, privilege, sexuality, and identity.
As a person who has privilege and offers services and products for sale, it’s my responsibility to talk and act upon the concepts of equity and inclusivity if I want to see a world that is more socially and economically just. By offering sliding scale prices, I can start to take action and responsibility for my part in the conversation around class and access.
To make my services as widely available as possible, I offer both the option to pay for photo sessions over time and utilize a sliding scale payment structure. If you need to pay via installments, your first installment serves as a deposit to hold your photography session date.
What is a sliding scale?
Sliding scale fees are variable prices for products and services based on a customer’s ability to pay. Fees are reduced for those who have lower incomes or less disposable income, regardless of income.
The sliding scale represents the idea that your income should not be the only factor playing a role in whether or not you can access a product or service. As someone who makes art around identity, diversity, and equality, giving people access must be factored into my business model. I must ensure there is accessibility to everyone who would like to experience my artwork, services, or products.
How does my sliding scale work?
As a small creative business, I do not receive outside funding, so my sliding scale must take into consideration what I can offer while still supporting myself.
My sliding scale has a two-point pricing structure: There is a minimum price (the rate at which I can cover my costs and keep making artwork) to the regular price (which ensures I have a living wage).
At all price points, please take into consideration that I invest a lot of time and love into figuring out the best possible way to create high-quality work for you, whether that is a photo session, an article, a video, or an archival print.
Where do I fall on the sliding scale?
If you feel that you are someone who needs to utilize sliding scale pricing, please contact me and say so. I’ve spent my entire professional career in non-profits and public service, so I know that even when you work hard, it can be difficult to find the funds for things other than the bare necessities. Don’t be shy, let’s talk about it.
For this model to work, you need to be honest with yourself and your financial situation. But while I ask you to consider these factors, please don’t stress about them. Pay what feels right. I will not ask questions or quiz you on your payment choices.
Consider paying less on the scale if you:
- experience discrimination and/or violence related to systematic bias,
- have medical expenses not covered by insurance,
- have medical expenses, been denied work, or experience discrimination related to ableism,
- are eligible for public assistance,
- have immigration-related expenses,
- are a sex worker who experiences occupational discrimination (personal or legislative),
- are an unpaid community organizer,
- experience difficulty finding work due to prior incarceration,
- are supporting children, family members in need, or have other dependents;
- are an elder with limited financial support.
Consider paying more on the scale if you:
- own the home in which you live,
- have investments, retirement accounts, or inherited money,
- travel recreationally,
- have access to family money and resources in times of need,
- work part-time by choice;
- have a relatively high degree of earning power due to level of education, gender privilege, racial privilege, class background, etc. (even if you do not currently exercise that privilege)