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Ben Van Cleave

I’m a new op...got offered a low rate job

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Hi Everyone,

I’m just getting started on here and in my Steadicam career, and am just starting to try and book jobs. I got referred for a web commercial. The rate is not great ($800 or $900 for gear and rate) but I want to make sure that I’m not out there undercutting anyone if I take the job. How do I go about ensuring that I’m not screwing over my fellow Knights of the Green Screen and giving myself a bad name in the process?


Ben Van Cleave

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Hi Ben,

Where are you based? Find some local operators in your area who have been doing it for awhile and ask what they think is fair. Rates are a balancing act based on your location, experience level, what gear you have vs. what production may need to rent separately, and the type of job (i.e. broadcast and narrative are different animals). Find out what the more experienced ops are charging in your area and work towards that, and ask them what they think is a fair rate in the meantime for the different types of jobs.


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