The Cost of a Photo

Action photography is f&$%ing expensive. Even the most basic gear required to capture quality shots will put a heavy dent in the budget. For the professional ski photographer; lenses, cameras, lighting, remote triggers, and a host of other items most of us have never heard of can rack up a $15,000 + bill in no time. Combine those costs with food, lodging, flights, heli-time, cat-time, laptops, external hard drives, plus annual insurance for when things go bad, and you’re looking at a very expensive profession. To better explain what happens out in the field, here are a lists of costs associated with this shot:

Phil Casabon by Chris O’Connell
Camera: Canon EOS-1D Mark IV ($4,999.99)
Lens: Canon EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM ($2,299.00)
– 2 Elinchrom Ranger RX packs ($2,262.50 x 2) = ($4,525.00)
- Pocket Wizard tt5 ($219.00)
- 2 st4′s ($79.99 x 2) = ($159.98)
- Quantum turbo battery ($466.00)
- T5 flash =($1,303.50)
- Photographer Airfare: LAX – Helsinki, Finland ($1,470.00)
- Phil’s airfare to Finland: YUL – HEL ($1,604.00)
- FStop Gear Satori EXP backpack ($419.00)

TOTAL: $17,264.48

This was an urban shoot so costs like hours in the heli, gas for a snow cat, a backcountry guide, or man hours to build a park feature don’t weigh in. Thankfully, this photo was taken in the dark ages of photography (read: before Instagram) so now it’s much less expensive to produce this shot. Now if we can only get iPhone –> Pocket wizard adapters we would really be in business.


Blog, Team News