Not Restoring Confidence In The Sale

, , , , , | Right | May 29, 2017

(I own a custom photo lab/frame shop/studio and do lots of restoration work on photos, something we’re very well known for. A first time client comes in with an old print that has quite a bit of damage and will take a good amount of work to restore. After looking at it I tell him what we can do and the cost.)

Me: “This is going to take a while to repair; there’s lots of damage. We’re going to have to rebuild part of the face on two people and fix the discoloration in several places. The cost for the Photoshop work will be [total].”

Client: “That’s a lot of money; I don’t know if it’s worth it.”

Me: “Well, it’s a lot of work. Only you can decide if getting the image restored is worth it. The memories that go with it are the reason most people want them restored.”

Client: “Tell you what we can do. You restore it and I’ll take a look to see if I’m willing to pay for it and how much.”

Me: “No. If you want it restored you’ll need to pay in advance now.”

Client: “I’m not paying until I see it and then I’ll decide what I’ll pay.”

Me: “Doesn’t work that way. You have no idea the amount of time I will spend and the skill needed to make it look right. This is the price; it’s your choice to pay it or not. But the work only gets done once you pay it.”

Client: “I know it’s all a computer doing it for you. All you do is click the fix button and it’s done in five seconds.”

(This is a bad thing to say to someone like me. My wife will tell you how I yell at TV shows that make it seem that all you have to do is click and the computer not only enhances an image but does all kinds of impossible things automatically.)

Me: “Sorry, that’s not how it works. All the artwork to restore is done by hand; there are no secret plug-ins that do it automatically. If you don’t want to pay the price, then we’re done talking.”

(He ranted a bit more trying to convince me that he understood my job far better than I do since he saw it on a TV show, and they just clicked a button and it was instantly done. I held my ground on the price and not doing the work unless he paid in advance. I knew if I had done the work he would have pulled the “The work is done, so you might as well get what I offer for it than nothing” stunt. It’s good owning the place. I can tell people to take a hike when needed.)

Not Always Right/Related

| PA, USA | Right | April 5, 2017

(I’m the customer in this story and I’ve called the photo store.)

Owner: “Hi, how may I help you?”

Me: *using a fake old-man voice* “Hi, I need to get some color prints made.”

Owner: “No problem. 35mm negatives?”

Me: “Yes. I took these years ago. The prints I have are just gray and fading.”

Owner: “Black and white negatives?”

Me: “Yah, that’s why I want them printed as color.”

Owner: “Um… you can’t get color prints from black and white negatives, sir.”

Me: “But it’s color print paper, right?”

Owner: “But… you see…”

Me: *voice slowly returning to normal* “But you really shouldn’t take silly requests from your brother-in-law.”

Owner: “Oh, hi. Hah, I’ve been asked stupider things.”

Me: “Really?”

(Of course, this was many years before NAR. I’ve learned a lot since.)

Not Getting A RAW Deal

| MA, USA | Right | January 27, 2017

(I just recently finished my Master’s from a prestigious college. I still work for this retailer since student loans payments are high and they actually pay me good money at this store, working in the photo center, since I have been there for many years and the job market in my field is lacking at the moment.)

Customer: “Why are my pictures all blurry?”

Me: “The resolution of the photo was not high enough to be printed clearly.”

Customer: “These are professional photos taken by a PROFESSIONAL. They are of the highest quality possible.”

Me: “How did this professional send them to you.”

Customer: “By email.”

(This happens a lot and few know that with certain emailing services, they will compress the photo being sent in order for it to email properly. Basically, emailing even a “professional photo” will ruin the quality. I explain this to the customer.)

Customer: “Yes but this is by a professional. He knows what he’s doing and what he’s talking about, unlike you.”

Me: “Ma’am, I have a Bachelor’s degree in Photography and a Masters from one of the best universities in the country in Digital Curation and Preservation. With all due respect, I KNOW what I am talking about.”

Customer: “If you had those degrees you wouldn’t be working here. I don’t believe you. You guys are just doing a crappy job printing my professional wedding photos.”

Me: “The reason why I am working here is none of your concern. I am trying to explain to you why your photos are not coming out clear. We have a PROFESSIONAL printer. It is not our fault they came out this way. If you would just contact your photographer and have them put it on a flash drive or CD, the quality will be much better and we can print them.”

Customer: “Clearly you have no idea what you are talking about when it comes to professional photography. I am going to the drugstore down the street to print these.”

(Let’s see if she finds someone who knows what they are talking about there!)

That’s The Stock Response

, | USA | Right | November 22, 2016

(We have to have customers sign a copyright release form if they print pictures that they do not own the rights to, such as an image of a celebrity they found off of Google. It makes sure we’re not the ones liable for printing it. A man made a poster of a foreign prince and I attach to the poster the form to sign. A customer comes up to the counter about an hour later and my coworker is assisting him. It’s the man with the poster.)

Coworker: “Sorry, sir, do you own the rights to this photo?”

Customer: “It’s a stock photo I found on Google! What the h*** are you talking about?!”

Coworker: “Well, if you found it on Google, it is copyrighted and we need you to sign this form.”

Customer: “It’s a stock photo! Of course I don’t own the rights!”

Coworker: “Yep, and we need you to sign this release form so you can have the photo.”

Customer: “You’re so stupid! You’re stupid! It’s a stock photo! Off Google! I have every right to have it!”

Coworker: “Yep, you can have it. We just need you to sign the form.”

Customer: *as he’s storming off* “You’re stupid! You’re so stupid! I can’t believe this bulls***! You’re so stupid! Stupid!”

Scared Their S*** On You

| San Francisco, CA, USA | Working | October 1, 2016

(The door to the photo lab is always open when there are employees inside, which means anything can wander in.)

Me: *on break eating lunch when I notice two pigeons walk in* “I wonder who will walk in the lab soon.”

(Right on the moment my coworker walks in and scares the pigeons, which fly out the only door. My coworker ducks to avoid the pigeons.)

Me: *laughs*

Coworker: *screams then laughs a bit* “That hella scared me.”

Me: “That was funny; I was just wondering who will enter the lab.”

Coworker: “That was not funny. That scared the s*** out of me.”

Me: “I think you scared the s*** out of the pigeons.”

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