Venture Photography!!!

(17 Posts)
Rockland78 Mon 28-Nov-11 10:07:16

Hello everyone, I went to Venture for my studio session recently with my 6 month old. It was so much fun and they were really friendly and I have a feeling I am going to LOVE the photos. Problem is they gave us the price list on the way out and the CHEAPEST VERY SMALL picture is over £300 !!! Agh!! We have our session coming up when they will show us all the pics and we have to chooose which ones we want and I have heard this is a hard sell. Anyone have any tips for getting the price down or know of any way you can try and get some of the pics on a memory stick etc to print ourselves as you also have to pay them for framing etc. Please help, I am getting very worried !!! thanks

omgomgomg Mon 28-Nov-11 12:19:41

No advice I'm afraid but I'm amazed that you didn't know how expensive it was before you had the session. They are notoriously expensive.

They can hard sell as much as they like if you ain't got the money you ain't got it.

Please remember that lovely though the pictures most certainly will look, in possibly as little as a year's time you'll wish you hadn't spent as much money on a few photos blown up into arty pictures. TRUST ME.

Perhaps you could let them know straight up before you attend the appointment that you have a budget of X and what can you expect to get for this to see if it is even worth attending the viewing.

organiser Mon 28-Nov-11 12:44:48

I had a Venture session a couple of years ago with my two children and the photos were brilliant. If you have a figure in mind before you go try and stick to that. I bought a set of 3 photos for £500 but I could of spent a fortune. I still love the photos and everyone comments on them and they haven't faded. Good luck.

nikinoodals Thu 15-Mar-12 12:10:30

I am a photographer and went to this experience for a bit of fun and was horrified! the prices are OUTRAGOUS ( for example a 7 x 5 inch photo in a crapy little frame= £95 ) and the pressure that is put on you to buy is also terrible. when the experiences are sold to you, you donot expect prices this high. below is the email i sent to complain and have not yet had a reply which i think is again VERY rude. Definitly a no go guys:


Following our recent photographic session, I felt that our experience was such that I must in all conscience drop you an email and give you our thoughts.

This voucher was sold to me just before Christmas and was in fact a Christmas Gift. I found myself very disappointed at the amount of time given to use the voucher. My family have had this type of session before and vouchers usually last for 6 months, even 1 year. However, I was told after buying the voucher that we had to have the shoot by the end of February. Nevertheless, I booked our shoot and first impressions were good. The photographer was very up-beat and put us at our ease. She seemed to understand that what we wanted was a mother and daughter shot, head and shoulders only.

We were then asked to return the next week to view the photographs after they had been edited and she had had a chance to “photo-shop” and enhance the shots taken. When we returned, we were very disappointed to find that it was difficult to find even one shot which we were completely happy with. In fact I don’t think there were any which were head and shoulder only as requested. The only work that had been done to the shoot, I felt, was that they had been presented in different shapes and sizes.

The sales pitch was quite obviously focused on selling the highest number of very expensive framed pictures as possible and felt very pressured. The salesman was quite happy to swap and change sizes as long as we were going to spend lots of money. Quite frankly, this was an impossible situation as I could not afford any of the absurd prices. Although he had, within seconds changed sizes and shapes of shots all the way through the presentation, once I said that I only wanted the picture which was included in the voucher price, he refused to undo the panoramic format of the only picture we were “fairly” happy with. Saying that if we wanted that one we would need to spend in excess of £400 to buy it as a set. He stated that, although the formats had been changed for the presentation, he would not change the format back as we were taking only a “discounted” photograph. Surely the photograph included on the voucher should be available to you. After all you have paid for this, discounted or not.

We did finally agree on another one of the photographs so that we didn’t lose what we had paid for originally. We now were asked to return a third time, which means trying to get time off work, yet again, to collect our purchase. However we found the whole experience very disappointing and misleading. At no time prior to the shoot are you given any clue to the very high prices or the limited time and pressure on this. And I think that other people should know that these vouchers are being sold under false pretences without giving the full information.

Rae7 Wed 11-Apr-12 08:54:29

I've had good experiences with Venture before when we had family portraits done with my brother and parents but wanted to look at reviews before going ahead with it to have portraits taken of my two children.

Reviews we're all pretty similar. Far too expensive, hard sell ect.

I went ahead with it anyways. £25 for an hour's photography session then another hour or so taking a look at the photo's then if your not impressed just take the free small photo. Bargin!

I had very particular ideas of what I wanted and had a long conversation on the phone with the photographer when he rang to ask about the children to get an insight of what they liked ect.

When the time came we ended up having well over an hours shoot as he wanted to capture exactly what I'd asked for. A shoot with a 26 month old and a 6 month old wasn't easy esp when it was almost bed time but Mark (Lemington Spa) was really patient. I'm not saying this shoot was really fun and exciting because actually it was more stressful than I'd thought it would be. Children this young don't smile on command, you just have to go with the flow.

Because of my previous experience with Venture (where even 10 years later the huge paneramic portrait is still loved and talked about) I was very nervous. I knew what I wanted and hoped he'd captured it. Myself and my partner went to view the photos and was greeted by Chris. We fell in love with the photos. Don't get my wrong - there we're some that we said no to straight away but a good 6 that we're just beautiful.

The thing is Venture capture's you children/family ect just as you are. Not a posed picture, not a 'smile - say cheese'. I've done my research and I'm very fussy about photography. To me it's art - you've got to love it as your having it on your wall's for a long time. I went to some local photographers but they we're no where near as good. Some had tryed to copy tp Venture style but failed. I visit people's homes in my job and I know instantly when there's a Venture image on the walls.

We ended up spending a fortune. We bought 2 huge paneramic portraits of the children. They we're fun shoots. One of my daughter taking a photo of my son with an old family camera and one of my daughter dressing up in my heels and my son next to her banging on my partners motorbike helmet. Isaac's really laughing and Olivia's in deep concentration. It was perfect to us. It had a little bit of me and my partner in it without us being in it and our children we're captured just as they are at home. We also bought another one of the children together looking into the camera. Really wide eyed, not a huge smile on their faces but just how they are, wide eyed and beautiful. We don't smoke and rarely drink, why not spend money on something your going to look at everyday for years.

I really don't understand why people are complaining so much about any hard sell or the fact the photo's do work out expensive. Be honest about what you want to spend. Be honest on the day if you weren't totally happy with the photos. They get no commision - it would be alot easier for them if you just took the free one. We we're there over 2 hours choosing our bigger ones. About the hard sell in shops ect that people are complaining about - come on! If you don't want something say no and walk away. How wet are you? I've been approached many times in the past and said no, it's easy.

We got no hard sell as I was very honest from the start. We we're never rushed - they fully understood that the choosing process can be hard, it's art and a lot of money and you need to be sure. We kept Chris 2 hours longer than he should of worked and he was just fantastic.

We now have our prints and there amazing, even better than I'd remembered. Time passes so fast, children grow up and change everyday. This is the perfect way of capturing them how they are now. Worth every penny in my eyes!

Newtothisstuff Wed 11-Apr-12 10:09:44

We ended up spending £1200 !! They are very good at selling and my exh was very gullible haha !!

audrey01 Thu 26-Apr-12 23:43:56

We just had our session with Venture last week. It was good fun, but like the original poster, we were shocked at their price list. We went for the review session a week later, firmly determined to leave just with the photo we had paid for (the promotional one). I have no idea where we went wrong, the sales pitch was not even a very hard one, I must confess - probably because the pictures were so lovely, we had a hard time narrowing them down. Couldn't bear to leave the studio without taking at least some of them, so ended up with a set of 4 framed pictures (one very large and 3 small ones) for £500!
Tip - tell them if you have a budget in mind and don't be afraid to negotiate sizes. I think they are happy to upgrade you as long as you spend something...

triciawent Sat 01-Sep-12 11:59:56

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

Yeahgrace Sat 13-Apr-13 12:58:11

Do NOT go. If you hate a person, give them a Venture Photography experience voucher!

We were given this photography experience as a gift from a family friend(who we now love!), and Ventured called to ask for a date for the photography (which is weird cos it should be at my expense not using the voucher - well it explains itself when we were lured there and saw the price!) on the phone when I ask about the price and the lady became very evasive and said we shall disuse once we are there!

Given the time we already spent in the studio, we felt we had to buy something... And the lowest acceptable price for a tiny frame was over 400 pounds! It is a complete con. Thinking photos were nice and our daughter would never be 8 weeks old we stupidly ended up spending over £1200 there and they wouldn't even deliver the frame to us(as it is "too delicate"). my husband wasted one Saturday morning driving to pick it up after over two months wait and the frame was not what we have ordered! Have to wait for another 2 weeks!

All this compare to a local indipendent photographer my friend used, offering to come to you house, for all digital copies costing £200!

It is obvious which you should choose.

Venture should be featured in "you've been scammed" TV shows.

natjose Mon 29-Apr-13 21:05:34

I think Venture do some great photography work, but I suppose if you go in there without knowing the prices then you could be in for a shock as they are very expensive. On the other hand, if they didn't take some great photos to sell to you, then you wouldn't feel in any way obligated to buy them! When I was there with my 2 kids, the difficulty was walking away from some of the gorgeous pictures. The thing is - they don't give you high-resolution digital copies of any of the images, so if you want them you have to pay for their expensive framed prints! Therefore a visit there can set you back £3,000-£5,000 if you LOVE the shots and want huge prints for your home (and can find some way to afford it)!! You do go home and truly enjoy those photos, but spending that much does give you that sick feeling in your stomach!

I learnt recently that you can get Venture-style photos done from any photos, even your own snaps! This great little company called Catch Stories do awesome photo editing. We actually purchased an heirbook from them, where they took my thousands of photos and turned them into a v high quality family photobook! Can't recommend them enough just for that alone. But along the way they identified and edited hundreds of our photos making them look a whole lot better, and for some of them they turned them into Venture-style photos and told us these would be great for printing (and they would give us all the high quality images of all the photos they edited at a minimal additional cost). I know they post examples of their editing work on their blog. No pressuring us to print it from them, although they said they could help us do it as you need to manage the colour and files correctly for sending to printers, or something like that. Ok so I spent £1,000, but felt better as it wasn't for one or two pictures. It was for an amazing 150-page book with hundreds of photos. They organised my years of photos which would have taken me a lifetime to sort out! And honestly my photos were really crap, they really edited them and made the book look amazing.

Anyway, does make me feel a little bad about having spent so much before... would I do it again? Maybe... I love my large prints. But let me see how it goes with printing the shots that they make for me. Need to look for good printers and nice modern frames, anyone know of any?

Amberjude Tue 18-Nov-14 08:26:40

Venture photography - astronomical prices, I have never seen anything like it. Yes I am sure the quality is good however the hard sell afterwards is completely unacceptable and I feel many people who are less well off will be bullied into purchasing photos that they cannot afford. We were made to feel like we were 'bad parents' for not buying our baby's photos . Thankfully I am a confident enough individual to walk away, but many are not, They should be ashamed of their hard sell tactics and should bring down their prices to somewhere near acceptable.

katebushbomb Sat 22-Nov-14 17:34:15

We have been "Ventured" twice but the last time i went, 2 years ago, signing up for the same deal £25 for a £95 photograph(a vastly inflated price which i doubt no-one will pay), we wanted a family photograph and the only photo that was not with someone with their hair in their face or blouse pulled to one side was one that could not be displayed as a 7x5 photo, the great 7x5 photos were of the children in individual poses, which would have meant purchasing more than the one photo or the larger landscape style photo at £475....i came away from the studio in tears feeling i had been duped and pressured into purchasing the larger could say come away without then. But considering the amount of effort taken to prepare, travel, be at the photo shoot and then return to view for an can imagine the pure frustration and heavy hearted it would be to come away empty the key to a successfull business not turnover? Surely if they brought down the digital (cheap) photograph production pricing, they would have customers returning far more frequently, we won't be going back to Venture unless they improved their satisfaction and ULTIMATELY their prices. Decades ago when photographs used to have to be chemically made and were produced on proper photographic paper, you could understand the man hours and chemical expense, commanding a higher price, especially to produce in the same quantities. Can we really expect the digital photos on modern paper to last anywhere near the old photos we have of our ancestors?

sptierney6 Fri 26-Jun-15 18:25:30

My advice is find an independant local studio photographer with a good portfolio of work and you'll no doubt save money AND get better images. Far more variety than a white background set of images The compromise is that it may not be in an expensive shop but may be a home studio with someone who can spend time with you and carry out any retouching required on your favourite images. They will probably use a Pro Lab for printing (far better than taking a digital file to crappy snaps) and may also offer quality framing and canvas options too or recommend a local professional picture framer rather than buy a cheap and tacky frame. Pro Lab print quality is gorgeous and the prints will become precious family heirlooms so well worth the money.

Monowolf Wed 15-Jul-15 15:01:46

I agree with everyone above. We were given the voucher as a gift with my first child. We ended up spending hundreds of pounds! If you are a couple they insist on you going to choose them together so they can do a really hard sell. We took the cheapest frames available but it was still hundreds of pounds. We only ended up with 6 photos. In contrast we used an amazing local photographer, Sasha de Klerk, when we wanted family photos of our second child. These were a fraction of Venture's prices and she took beautiful, outdoor photographs with creative props and accessories. We got a disk with all the photos. Over 40! A much option.

N1MagicRainbow Sun 13-Sep-15 18:29:57

For anyone out there still considering organising a baby or family photo session. Do get in touch. I am a professional local children's photographer and would be happy to discuss the photo shoot and various packages. Just to give you an idea, a CD with 30-40 images from a baby photo session costs £300 in total. No hard selling or hidden costs.

lunayJ Wed 23-Mar-16 07:12:54

Hi Guys,

I have successfully carried out few shoots for my newborn in my home environment, although they were not studio quality they looked great. i picked up a few tips here at that were of help

Joyjame1809 Wed 08-Jun-16 10:45:45

Venture are far too expensive, I used my voucher and wanted something classic using their white background & vibrant colours. The pictures were very disappointing, they were quirky & none really showed of the faces.
I asked specifically not to see the 'hilarious' laughing family panoramic shots, no tennis rackets or 'personality' arranged in a studio. Yes yes yes they seemed to understand....obviously not they used their own unoriginal style.
Luckily I didn't like the pictures & chose my free 5" by 7"
The photographer was patronising, talked about his great arty style, how they do David Bailey style portraits, how I could have a gigantic piece for my house bla bla
He said my attitude came out in some of my photographs and he loved it !
I don't have attitude, I was expressing my dislike of the very dated style in many of the pictures I was given to look at. I was telling him what I actually wanted, to take if he wanted to sell the product. I'm very aware of what I like and explained it very well in all of the unwanted phone calls leading up to my session. Totally ignored my ideas, totally didn't sum up my character, added daft quirky angles & accessories all of which I'd said no to.
I'd choose an indecent local photographer who listens to you, won't pose you unless it's a pose you like, and isn't going to charge you £95 for a 5"x7" photo. The baby in the basket, child in a wheelbarrow are no different to the cheaper baby on rug in the 80's for character shots take snap shots in a context or garden.
The whole fun session & slide show to Rhianna was a waste of time, the results were poor & the pricing very confusing. (It's 65p to print a 5"x7" not £95 each)

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