[Tig] Colorist Salary

David Lindberg david.hj.lindberg at gmail.com
Tue May 7 12:24:19 BST 2013


I don't know if this is something you find appropriate to discuss in here but since it's Tuesday I feel it's worth a shot at least. Feel free to ignore if you think this is wrong of me to ask.

I just went to a meeting with a big production company here in Sweden that were interesting in hiring me as a freelancing colorist in most of their coming productions. But when they asked me what I charge per hour I said I didn't want to mention a solid price this early but instead that could be something we should discuss when the info about the projects were more accurate. 

I'm only 20 and not very experienced at all, although I've graded a lot of music videos, some commercials and spent 3 years learning color theories, several grading apps (mostly DaVinci) etc. With that said I mean I'm not a beginner but still not a multi-years-experienced master in color grading. With THAT said, I mean I absolutely don't think I'm as good as probably any of you but I still think I'm good at this and it's truly my main passion which I want to do for living. 

But what I'm wondering is if any of you can tell me a somewhat average price for freelancing colorists. I know it varies depending on the project, the company you work for, the experience level, the quality of your work as well as the quality of how you handle clients (I've spent 6 months as a Smoke operator so I'm not completely new to having troublesome and pain-in-the-ass clients either). But is there some examples or prices you can tell me? I have never discussed with another freelancing colorist about what the salary should be so I've actually no clue. On the stuff I've done this far I think I've worked way too cheap though my price has been like 80 dollar/h.

One thing to consider is that I won't be offer a grading suite with expensive monitors and that kind of stuff which would be included in the price, since they wanted me to be working in their own grading suite. Another thing worth mentioning is they mostly work with TV commercials.

Don't know if it helps but if you want to get a hint of my knowledge you can watch a basic breakdown I made on my latest commercial work: https://vimeo.com/64989025. I know it doesn't say much but it still shows that I know what looks are and can create one, and not just that I think grading is changing the contrast. (Although that can be the case sometimes as well of course.)

Hope you didn't think any of this sounded cocky or anything, I just wanted to give you an as clear picture as possible about my situation and knowledge. 

Thank you very much,

More information about the Tig mailing list