Follow along this article for steps in creating your own photography invoice, what to pay attention to, and of course, a FREE DOWNLOADABLE PHOTOGRAPHY INVOICE TEMPLATE that I regularly use to bill my own photography clients.
This template applies to most photography genres, including commercial photography, product photography and wedding photography.
So here is to the necessary items to include in constructing your own photography invoice, spelled out for you step by step.
A basic photography invoice includes the photographer’s business details, the client’s details, the scope of the specific job, and payment details. Invoices do not have a fixed format, so you can make your own invoice, or tailor a photography invoice template to your own needs.
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Photography Business Details
Invoices are considered legal writing, and can be put forward as evidence of commercial dealing, if unfortunately there is a need as such.
Make sure that the business details matches that on official business documents, such as business registration certificates, bank accounts etc.
Photography Business Name - your LLC/ Sole Proprietor/ Business License name
Business Contact - your work email, work phone, studio address (if applicable)
Portfolio Page - your previous work samples, social media links, testimonials
‘Invoice’ - state clearly that this document is an invoice, to play safe
By the time you get to the point of billing your client, you should already have all the necessary information about your client.
I personally insert their details into my template, generate a PDF and then send it to them for their review.
No further action is required on their part, except to pay the stipulated amount on the invoice.
Client Name - their full name, or at least first and last names
Client’s Contact - their email, phone, number
The scope and fees associated with the job should already be agreed upon in earlier correspondence between you and your client, but the invoice is an effective benchmark point in making sure that you are on the same page as your clients.
Therefore, it would be beneficial for both parties to have every part of your services outlined as an item on the invoice, and name each item clearly.
For instance, instead of including the entire lump sum under one item ‘photography’, break it down into several components, such as ‘day rate’. ‘post-processing’, or ‘Portraits Standard Package’ if your photography business runs based on packages. You should tailor these items according to your charging model, but the idea is to outline the areas of your service where disputes can potentially arise.
Service item - write a concise description of what the item includes
Unit price - the dollar amount of one unit of the service
Amount - the number of units required by the job
Total Amount - the aggregate lump sum payable to you by your client
Make it as detailed as it need to be to make it easier for your clients to raise issues regarding your services, if any, before the situation gets too complicated.
This is why, as you will see in my template below, there are always a few rows in the job description section.
Depending on the size of your photography job, the process of getting paid may not be as straightforward as you would wish.
To make your life easier, the invoice should contain all your client needs to know regarding payment in one place, clearly outlined.
Bank information - payment method, bank name, account holder name, account number etc
Invoice Date - the date on which the invoice is created
Due Date - the date on which the payment is due
Payments might need to go through various layers of approval, and can happen months after the service is delivered, depending on the terms of your agreement with your client.
So many problems can happen in this process, but make sure your invoice isn’t one.
How to Make your Photography Invoice
As mentioned in the introduction, photography invoices do not have in any fixed format. Therefore, a document that outlines the above components will do the job.
It is a largely functional document, unlike the contract, where the substance actually needs careful deliberation.
I made my own photography invoice with Microsoft Words, which I will share with you below, and export it as a pdf before sending it off to a client.
You can type up your own invoice on whatever software you see fit.
Photography Invoice Template FREE Download!
More on the Photography Business
More articles on how to run a successful photography business:
In this article, we talked about:
The components of a photography invoice
A free photography invoice template
More sharing coming soon!
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