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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Ballooning 101 » » Ken Stillman's Fantasy Princesses (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Powermagic
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I guess I find it interesting what some called "cheap" or insulting the arts worth when these are all made up numbers. It is we who say we are worth more than the average working American. Please do not misread my comments. I say make as much as you can. But I guess I am just more realistic in the reality of what people work long boring jobs,sometimes in the hot sun are making in comparison.
As for how I am perceived in the market, I have no illusion how the booking agent veiws me. He will move on to find someone else and for him, he keeps telling me he cannot afford to loose the client by raising the rate. So really it was my choice to do it on a Thrusday since I wanted to keep up my close up skills, and some cash flow on an eve I would be watching 30 Rock.... Do to the distance, the client would most likely never have called me and if anything veiw the agent price as reasonable ($150 per hour is fair for 2 hours. Could be more but really in out of the ballpark in my state)

So as for the princesses, since I would be the only one in my area making these initially, and since I have not made large scale items. I probably would have under charged for them, still making a profit for a hour of assembly. I do sometimes look at making some designs at home less work than when you have a crowd of kids and parents waiting for balloons.
Kevinr
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Power magic I really appreciate your honesty and how real you have made your posts about real life and what your dealing with.

Even if I am shocked you or anyone would drive almost 4 hours (3.5 total) plus 2 hours work for about $250 dollars WOW!

Agree or disagree at least your telling the truth.

I can only imagine what your gas bill would be for driving that far $40??
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Well I do not know why so many magicians on the Café have to lie or be embarassed. Many over inflate what they actually make or how many shows they do since they feel that is the only sign of professional. I have been in the buiness full time for over 15 years and 25 years total studying and performing. But some months are slow and unlike some, my Feb tanked.
I did this giglast year FOR LESS. But back them I was feeling out this agent and was told the group was 100 people. I told him about it and drove him nuts on the price. Last year I wanted to practice some new material and again, it was not a weekend.
I told him I would need more if they wanted me back.

What I recall was in TIME and GAS it cost far less than my estimates. My MPG are OK, not super high or super low. Where I live gas is one of the lowest in the country. But yes maybe $30-35 in gas expense. What I recall it did not take as long to get there since it all highway driving.

So the $260 I have him up to, on a high estimate is leaving me with $200 profit since it is close up no disposables.
Now I know some of you can not imagine that being worth your time. Some of you might feel that if it were not for the drive time, it would be acceptible to make $130 per hour if it was right around the corner.

However I think I have explained he reality of it.
1. I am not loosing work by taking this gig. I would have been relaxing from 4-10 pm.
2. I am not loosing money, in fact am ahead, ending up with more money in pocket than if staying home.
3. I am getting needed practice in close up and large, noisy crowd fine tuning experience. (always a challenge to do close up with 500 people talking and music blasting)
4. Get to meet nice people and socialize
5. THey are far from my normal area to worry hurting my rep. In fact, unless I choose to, I am asked to hand out the agent's card not mine. Great way to practice.

6. $33-35 per hour is still about the national average and lets be REAL guys, if you have a 9-5 job you are not usually getting paid to drive to work. So how much of the drive time is realistic to figure in. It seems I am ALWAYS 45-1 hour drive to my shows. So maybe 1- 1.5 hours is over driving.

Do I want to work for that amount? Would I like More? OF COURSE. But those who say they will refuse any work that shows a profit over watching TV is then someone with plenty of work. That was what I was saying about PRIDE and PRICING. I have tried the PRIDE route and all that gets me around here is FREE TIME.
Everytime I refuse a job based on price, they still find someone else to do the gig. SO I have my pride but no cash flow.

I guess I am realistic in the sense that you might have been paid $250 per hour for close up plus expenses in the past, but doing a gig for less, is not shameful .
If I do the math and I am still making more on the job than someone who toils in a box factory making boxes, or flipping burgers all day, than can I really be all that insulted?

I am really thinking some of the shock some of you had was due to the fact you are IN the position to pass on work. I hope things pick up or I have to move.


In the end it is my decision. I did spend days thinking it over. I did want to refuse it. I did work him for more cash .

I am fully awaer that if take the show , I can not complain about being under paid and I should not cut corners.

Honstly, and you might flip out on this, I would rather make balloons. For me it is less stress since they are not tying to catch you like they can do with doing magic. While I would have more costs with the balloons, I would not be obligated to hit every table and work the entire room like with close up.
However that is not the contract and as I said, need to keep up on my close up.

So when this all started about what a princess was worth, it was to see where the market range is and if it is worth the investment in time and stock to make the large ones up. As some thought I was picking on what they are worth, I was merly reminded how tricky it can be when moving into a new area or medium how value is subjective.
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Moving on...

How complex is it to make the princess. It seems that if following a template it should not be too taxing. Is it much harder to twist 360s and 660s?
Kevinr
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660 do slow you down a bit I would think the first one is going to take you a few hours to build. However, you will get it down to 60-90 minutes from start (pulling out your balloon bag) to finish (clean up and putting it in your car or van)
Amazing Magic Co
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Does anyone have a copy of Ken's Princess DVD they'd like to sell?

Thanks,
Dan.
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Is the princess taught to be built in parts for transport and assmembed on location quickly? Ken is away until April 6ths from the last email he sent me. So I am asking here.
Ryan Price
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He teaches how to assemble it in steps. With a little imagination you could easily build the skirt and upper body separate and put it together at the venue.
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(Material cost + Labor+ delivery) X 6= Retail

Retail sold directly to consumer ..... customarily discounted 10%-20% for off times (mon-thurs), Charities, schools
Wholesale sells to retailers (agents) instead of a 6times mark up do 5times or 15% - 25% off.

Material Cost: price of items per pice + shipping and tax

LABOR: What you think your worth per hour OR what it would cost to have someone else do that per hour

Delivery: $2 per mile roundtrip The IRS allows you 51 cents per mile. that gives you 50˘ profit per mile.
---------------------------------------

I don't want to be paid the average anything because what I do isn't average.

The way you follow your passion is this.

Get a regular job.... do your passion on the side ..... when the passion makes more than your regular job QUIT the regular job and devote more time to your passion.

I worked in a factory making $150 per day and did magic & balloons on the side.

I would work 18 hours a day regularly, taking all the over time I could. I worked midnight shift. slept 3- 4 hours per day and did a nightly restaurant gig.
Weekends were shows and sleep. Did that for 8 years till the Business was making more than my factory job.

So my goal per week is to make $150 -$200 per day to maintain our lifestyle.
---------------------------------------
Value is a strange thing, look at America's Got Talent. What makes a singer more talented than a juggler? why is it okay to miss a note but not a ball?

Following your passion is much more work than getting a degree in computer programing and finding a job. a passion is all encompassing, you can't turn it off.
Mark Byrne
AKA Mark the Balloon Guy
As seen on the TODAY SHOW
www.balloonguy.net
Creator of Bad to the Balloon DVD series
Go to my store: http://tinyurl.com/Bad2theBalloon
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Ryan, so that would mean that Ken does not really intend you to make it in easy transport style, right?

I am curious, what are you guys driving to carry the larger sculptures?
Steve Yarosko
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Honda Odyssey minivan
Ryan Price
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I also have a minivan with the seats taken out of the back.
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Quote:
On 2012-02-27 13:16, Bad to the Balloon wrote:
(Material cost + Labor+ delivery) X 6= Retail

Retail sold directly to consumer ..... customarily discounted 10%-20% for off times (mon-thurs), Charities, schools
Wholesale sells to retailers (agents) instead of a 6times mark up do 5times or 15% - 25% off.

Material Cost: price of items per pice + shipping and tax

LABOR: What you think your worth per hour OR what it would cost to have someone else do that per hour

Delivery: $2 per mile roundtrip The IRS allows you 51 cents per mile. that gives you 50˘ profit per mile.
---------------------------------------

I don't want to be paid the average anything because what I do isn't average.

The way you follow your passion is this.

Get a regular job.... do your passion on the side ..... when the passion makes more than your regular job QUIT the regular job and devote more time to your passion.

I worked in a factory making $150 per day and did magic & balloons on the side.

I would work 18 hours a day regularly, taking all the over time I could. I worked midnight shift. slept 3- 4 hours per day and did a nightly restaurant gig.
Weekends were shows and sleep. Did that for 8 years till the Business was making more than my factory job.

So my goal per week is to make $150 -$200 per day to maintain our lifestyle.
---------------------------------------
Value is a strange thing, look at America's Got Talent. What makes a singer more talented than a juggler? why is it okay to miss a note but not a ball?

Following your passion is much more work than getting a degree in computer programing and finding a job. a passion is all encompassing, you can't turn it off.


$200 a day should be very possible that's only $1400 a week or about $73,000 a year.
Bad to the Balloon
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Quote:
\
$200 a day should be very possible that's only $1400 a week or about $73,000 a year.


That is just the steady gigs.....
Mark Byrne
AKA Mark the Balloon Guy
As seen on the TODAY SHOW
www.balloonguy.net
Creator of Bad to the Balloon DVD series
Go to my store: http://tinyurl.com/Bad2theBalloon
Powermagic
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What is the width of the widest part of the princess?
Will it fit in a ford Escape with the seats down?
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