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04-21-2011, 08:45 AM   #1
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Using photography to help save for my childs education

Hi everyone, this is an exciting website and I always appreciate what Iíve read as a passive guest here.

I have a 6 month old and money is tight, my family loves the photos my wife and I take of our child and my entire side never gets to see him in person because we live 10 hours away.

My family has indicated to me that they would love to have the ability to print photos out of our collection and I thought to make it easier for them, instead of them having to download and take the photos to CVS (family is not technically inclined) I could just setup a smug mug or something where they can just order prints at cost.

But then I got to thinking that maybe this could be a fun way for family to contribute to a 529 plan for our child and in return they get prints, wallets, etc.

Instead of at cost prints, the cost would be a little more with fully disclosing that any proceeds would go to our Childs 529 plan.


I'm having an ethical issue with this. If you were a grandparent, great grandparent, aunt, uncle, great aunt, cousin, etc. Would you find this move rude? a joke? Audacious?

on the one hand, Iíve bought a friends painting in a charity she had to raise money for her dying mother to take a trip around the world before her time ends. on the other hand I don't think that's an equal scenario.


what are your thoughts?

I'd like to do something like this, but I also don't want to alienate.


04-21-2011, 09:24 AM   #2
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Don't just tell them your plan. Give them the option of still ordering prints at cost. That way, it's their choice. People don't like to be forced into giving.

For my nontechnical distant relatives, I have ordered prints myself from their local pharmacy. I used Walgreens so I know they give you the option of paying when the prints are picked up.
04-21-2011, 09:31 AM   #3
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hey you know that's a good idea - i like that. As you said that leaves the decision in their hands; no obligation necessary. Neat!

now, does a website exist that allows you to set two difference prices? smug mug you can set the price but I don't think you can set more than one price for a style.

I guess the easiest way to do that is make the basic print offered at cost and then the higher quality the print that costs extra.
04-21-2011, 09:51 AM   #4
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Reality check: You're going to take in $12.43 but raid $4,758 out of the the kids' college fund to pay for gear. Sorry to burst your bubble.

04-21-2011, 09:57 AM   #5
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QuoteQuote:
Reality check: You're going to take in $12.43 but raid $4,758 out of the the kids' college fund to pay for gear. Sorry to burst your bubble.

nice try:
well, the good news is that our education savings for our kid is locked out until he is 18; anything can go in, nothing can go out

also - i own all the gear I could need unless something brakes or I become good enough to earn an income on a hobby. our money is way to tight to even consider buying more gear anytime in the near future.
04-21-2011, 10:54 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxfanboy Quote
nice try
Good for you! ;~)
04-21-2011, 06:27 PM   #7
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I think this would be awkward and complicated and net you something like $10. It wouldn't be worth it to me.

Paul
04-21-2011, 06:41 PM   #8
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Surely facebook (or other social networrking sites) solve the problem of showing family members photo's of the kids?
If there's a particular shot they'd like a print of a hi-res jpeg can be emailed and they can get one done on their end... There's not much in the way of "technical inclination" to opening an attatchment and saving to a usb-stick is there?!
I'm really not sure there's a business model here... And as far as your ethical issue goes... My cashflow is also tight... When my mum wants shots (seen first on facebook) of either my nephews or my own kid she asks me how much I need for printing

04-21-2011, 06:43 PM   #9
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I think I'd be more comfortable just asking relatives if they'd like to contribute to a fund. It seems kind of tacky asking them to pay for photos of your kid.
04-21-2011, 07:26 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by DaveHolmes Quote
There's not much in the way of "technical inclination" to opening an attatchment and saving to a usb-stick is there?!
You'd be surprised what non technical folks/relatives don't know. My BiL handed me a 128mb flash drive and said I could have it. I asked him why he didn't use it and he said...I don't know what that is. Some non technical folks don't even know how to save an attachment.

I would feel awkward asking my family to pay for any of my photos, unless of course they wanted some of my better work. Snapshots of your child shouldn't be paid for by relatives.
04-22-2011, 01:16 AM   #11
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It's difficult to comment because we don't know your family. I wouldn't do it, but your rellies might think it's a great way to contribute to your child's future. Why not just ask them?
04-22-2011, 06:55 AM   #12
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My youngest just graduated a year ago. Her senior year tuition was $52,000. From her freshmen year on, the tuition jumped an average $2000 each year. Add to that books and extras. I hope you are planning on selling a LOT of prints.
04-23-2011, 06:18 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by reeftool Quote
My youngest just graduated a year ago. Her senior year tuition was $52,000. From her freshmen year on, the tuition jumped an average $2000 each year. Add to that books and extras. I hope you are planning on selling a LOT of prints.
reeftool, that is jaw-dropping!
04-24-2011, 06:58 AM   #14
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I'm in the middle of my own degree at the moment and looking at depts of £32,000 (GBP) in course-fees and matainence loans by graduation... This is in the UK where the government subsidises higher education too...
Septembers influx of UK students to university level can now add around another £10,000 on top due to the governments cuts to education...

And don't get me started on the cuts to the arts!!
04-24-2011, 07:45 AM   #15
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IMO, your family will be offended. Load the images to Snapfish or whatever and let them buy what they want at cost. Kids and kid photos are meant to be shared.


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