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Huge project just landed in my lap and I don't know what to charge.

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Shannon Appleby
Huge project just landed in my lap and I don't know what to charge.
on Aug 24, 2012 at 2:47:32 am

I've just been asked to give a proposal for a very large project. This is for a company that wishes for me to create everything they need for a project they are going to pitch to a major sports network. They have a budget. I may need some help with this also with some sub contractors. Little above my experience, but I'm going to do it anyway. I've done over 150 Nationally and regionally broadcast programs but nothing of this magnitude.
Here is the Request for Proposal. Need an idea of what to charge to do this.

Scope of project: Create a complete motions graphic package, a 45-60 second city feature. 1-2 human-interest features approx. 45 seconds edited, complete a complete pilot sizzle real incorporating: Music, Graphics, Human-interest feature, city feature, and approx. 2-3 minutes of competition. Entire Sizzle/Pilot should be 4-8 minutes long based on creative direction and feel while viewing.

Motion Package:
Show open
Info lower 3rd
Course path animation (need cutaway in sizzle reel featuring approx. 20 Seconds.
Commercial intro/outro
Anything else we decide post creative meeting.

Human Interest: 1-2..45-60 secs in length (based on creative direction)

Market Feature: 45-60 seconds in length (based on creative direction)

Sizzle/Pilot: Compile package of all above including competition footage.

*Shooting/compiling competition footage would be budgeted separately from above.


I need a serious professional to assist with this. Please do not comment if you do not have experience in this, and please do not speculate if you haven't done anything similar to this. This is to be very high end. I have been given permission to use Trapcode templates and Red Giant, After Effects CS6 currently on Windows 7 HP Machine. Upgrading to MACBOOK PRO with big budget if all goes well afterwards.
319-361-7777 if interested in assisting with the project for pay.

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Walter Soyka
Re: Huge project just landed in my lap and I don't know what to charge.
on Aug 25, 2012 at 2:41:43 am

When bidding large projects, you have to break them down into manageable sub-projects, estimate each little piece, then put them all together.

That said, this is a tough RFP to bid to. Two big questions for me: what's the creative direction, and what's that line about "Anything else we decide post creative meeting?"

Learning more about the creative requirements is critical to developing your budget, because creative requirements drive design costs. Are any elements of the look settled now? How much time will you need to spend in the research and concept design phase? Can you really create everything in After Effects, or will you also need artists with other skills, like traditional illustration, advanced compositing, grading, or 3D (maybe for that course pathway)?

The RFP mentions that competition footage is separately budgeted, but do you need to produce, shoot, and cut the market and human interest features as well?

You mentioned Trapcode templates. My advice is to stay away from templates -- even good ones -- because you want your visuals to perfectly support the message or feel of the show, and you want a distinct, unique look for your show that will help brand it and be recognizable at a glance.

Best of luck with your bid!

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
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