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Thread: Model Release - What do you think

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    Model Release - What do you think

    Not withstanding that (probably) non of us are lawyers, just wondering what you all think of the following as the basic text for a simple & straight-forward agreement?

    The Photographer agrees:

    - To make available to the customer, private changing facilities (studio shoots only).
    - To conduct themselves in a sensitive & professional manner at all times.
    - To allow friends and/or associates of the customer to be present at any time.
    - To make images available for pre-selection within 7 days of the shoot, and to provide final images (in electronic or printed form) within 7 days of the customer advising us of their final selections.

    The Customer agrees:

    - That the photographer may have assistants and/or other persons present for the duration of the shoot.
    - That as the creator of the image(s), the photographer retains copyright to any and all images created by the photographer.
    - That the photographer may display a small selection of images from any shoot on any website(s), for promotional or other such purposes.
    - To pay the photographer as agreed, for all services rendered, upon completion of those agreed services.

    The Photographer & Customer agree:

    - That images will only be released in an electronic form at a maximum of 900 x 600 pixel resolution (typically an on-screen size of approx 9 x 6 inches); suitable for website display / facebook etc, or 6 x 4 inch ("post card") Prints.. High resolution images will not be released to the customer.
    - Images that do not meet our high professional & technical standards will not be released to the customer.

    Anything I've missed? Anything I shoud add? Any thoughts or ideas?

  2. #2
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    That the photographer may display a small selection of images from any shoot on any website(s), for promotional or other such purposes.

    Images that do not meet our high professional & technical standards will not be released to the customer.[/SIZE]
    Comments in relation to the above.

    Who defines, 'a small selection'? That is too subjective. Needs to be unambiguous. For example: The photographer may display some or all of the images on a website for promotional or other purposes.

    Who defines 'high professional standards'? You and I can see that 'our' is meant to refer to the photographer but it could be interpreted as the the photographer and customer in partnership. So, 'Images that do not meet the photographer's high professional ....'

    This is one I downloaded a long time ago and kept, just in case.


    This document authorises you to publish the photographs you took of me at:
    (Print address of location or describe location in detail - i.e.: 6th tree on left past junction of M4)



    I accept that they may be published in your forthcoming book (currently entitled) Name of your project. You are further granted permission to display them in your portfolio, promote your book and business by reproducing them in printed articles, brochures, postcards, posters and by electronic transmission. I accept that the copyright remains with (your name). The photographs are not to be used in unrelated advertising without written permission from me.

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    - To make images available for pre-selection within 7 days of the shoot, and to provide final images (in electronic or printed form) within 7 days of the customer advising us of their final selections.
    Why hold yourself to such a tight timescale? Personally I'd extend this to at least 14 days. You never know what personal / other stuff may arise that could prevent you from doing sticking to this timeframe.

    I just did a quick search for "Photography Model Release Template" into Google and quite a few came up. have you had a look at them?

    Alternatively, my wife is a lawyer and we have access to legal databases where we could download a proper model release form that you could edit? Just a thought.

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    Quote Originally Posted by Donald View Post
    Who defines, 'a small selection'? That is too subjective. Needs to be unambiguous. For example: The photographer may display some or all of the images on a website for promotional or other purposes.
    Hi Donald,

    My thinking at the time was that a typical shoot produces several hundred images, and as I typically only use about 2% of those for my own purposes (my "keepers"), I thought that should meet a general criteria of "a small selection" if I had to explain it to a judge!

    Who defines 'high professional standards'? You and I can see that 'our' is meant to refer to the photographer but it could be interpreted as the the photographer and customer in partnership. So, 'Images that do not meet the photographer's high professional ....'
    Thanks

    This is one I downloaded a long time ago and kept, just in case.


    This document authorises you to publish the photographs you took of me at:
    (Print address of location or describe location in detail - i.e.: 6th tree on left past junction of M4)



    I accept that they may be published in your forthcoming book (currently entitled) Name of your project. You are further granted permission to display them in your portfolio, promote your book and business by reproducing them in printed articles, brochures, postcards, posters and by electronic transmission. I accept that the copyright remains with (your name). The photographs are not to be used in unrelated advertising without written permission from me.
    Seems rather blunt to be honest -- I'm trying to write it in such a way as they feel like it clarifies what they can expect, and not have it read like a document designed solely to cover my rear-end.

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    Quote Originally Posted by RockNGoalStar View Post
    Why hold yourself to such a tight timescale? Personally I'd extend this to at least 14 days. You never know what personal / other stuff may arise that could prevent you from doing sticking to this timeframe.
    In reality, it's not hard to do it even quicker than that (under-promise, over-deliver etc). I know that the competition can take 2 to 3 weeks, so I really wanted this as a subtle advantage.

    I just did a quick search for "Photography Model Release Template" into Google and quite a few came up. have you had a look at them?
    Not recently. First and formost, I wanted it to be something that was simple - straight forward - and non "legalese". Some of the ones I have read in the past are downright hostile

    Alternatively, my wife is a lawyer and we have access to legal databases where we could download a proper model release form that you could edit? Just a thought.
    Thanks for the kind offer - I'll see how I go with this for now - if nothing else, it might be a good set of notes to give to my lawyer for his opinion.

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    This is probably not what you are after but it is interesting I think. On the TWIP podcast last week, they spoke about a new I-Pad app that is a model release form.

    From what I remember it had 4 different types of agreement/contract that you choose by tick boxes. the form is then signed by the photographer and model direct on the I-Pad screen and if you have 3G or Wireless connectivity you can e-mail it straight from the app to both parties immediately.

    It doesn't get much quicker than that Now all I need is an I-pad
    Last edited by stevewe88; 22nd August 2011 at 12:15 PM. Reason: sppelling

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    I would amend the promise to allow friends and associates to be present at any time. You need the ability to be able to gently and politely throw drunken louts out on the behinds as expeditiously as possible.

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    I don't know anything about this sort of thing, so take this with a grain of salt. But I wonder whether you would want to include a specific point in the contract about limits of liability (to fees charged for the shoot, or whatever).

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    - That as the creator of the image(s), the photographer retains copyright to any and all
    images created by the photographer.
    I believe there is an additional business opportunity here that you might consider (or perhaps you have, and may have discounted it for reasons I haven't even thought of).

    If you were to re-phrase that sentence to include:

    "Unless other arrangements are made in advance of the session, the creator of the
    image(s), the photographer retains full copyright to any and all images created by the
    photographer. The clients desire to purchase the copyright to the sessions images must be stated,
    and compensation agreed upon, prior to the initiation of the session."

    You have the right to sell your copyright to the images. If your client feels uncomfortable with you
    retaining that right, or simply wants full control over the images, then you can certainly apply an
    appropriate financial value to it, and receive just compensation for assigning it to your client. I might
    also add a legal caveat to that part, stating that the images shall not be modified in anyway once
    presented to the client.

    This would also be another option on your list of available services, as some clients may be fearful
    of allowing another to have copyright over their photo's, and as a result they would "opt out" of even having them taken. Granted, you risk giving up the right to a "million dollar" image, but that is also the very risk they are compensating you for, and prior to your ever pushing the shutter.

    Always been a firm believer that, providing it is neither illegal, immoral or unethical to do so (and I
    too have high standards), then anything is negotiable.

    Mike
    Last edited by Dizzy; 22nd August 2011 at 05:31 PM.

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    You should include two types of model releases, one for casual shooting and one for professional services.

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    Have you considered taking part or all payment in advance. Saves a lot of hassle chasing non or late payers?

  12. #12

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    Quote Originally Posted by stevewe88 View Post
    This is probably not what you are after but it is interesting I think. On the TWIP podcast last week, they spoke about a new I-Pad app that is a model release form.

    From what I remember it had 4 different types of agreement/contract that you choose by tick boxes. the form is then signed by the photographer and model direct on the I-Pad screen and if you have 3G or Wireless connectivity you can e-mail it straight from the app to both parties immediately.

    It doesn't get much quicker than that Now all I need is an I-pad
    Thanks Steve - I have 2, so I'll look into it.

  13. #13

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    Quote Originally Posted by tbob View Post
    I would amend the promise to allow friends and associates to be present at any time. You need the ability to be able to gently and politely throw drunken louts out on the behinds as expeditiously as possible.
    Thanks Trevor, but in practice, we just never get that kind of thing happening anyway. In reality, women (especially young women) feel more secure in this kind of environment if they can have friends / associates / parents etc around - so I say "all welcome" just to lower the entry barrier -- plus they're vital for adjusting women's clothing / holding fans etc.

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    Quote Originally Posted by Dizzy View Post
    I believe there is an additional business opportunity here that you might consider (or perhaps you have, and may have discounted it for reasons I haven't even thought of).

    If you were to re-phrase that sentence to include:

    "Unless other arrangements are made in advance of the session, the creator of the
    image(s), the photographer retains full copyright to any and all images created by the
    photographer. The clients desire to purchase the copyright to the sessions images must be stated,
    and compensation agreed upon, prior to the initiation of the session."

    You have the right to sell your copyright to the images. If your client feels uncomfortable with you
    retaining that right, or simply wants full control over the images, then you can certainly apply an
    appropriate financial value to it, and receive just compensation for assigning it to your client. I might
    also add a legal caveat to that part, stating that the images shall not be modified in anyway once
    presented to the client.

    This would also be another option on your list of available services, as some clients may be fearful
    of allowing another to have copyright over their photo's, and as a result they would "opt out" of even having them taken. Granted, you risk giving up the right to a "million dollar" image, but that is also the very risk they are compensating you for, and prior to your ever pushing the shutter.

    Always been a firm believer that, providing it is neither illegal, immoral or unethical to do so (and I
    too have high standards), then anything is negotiable.

    Mike
    Thanks Mike,

    But to be honest, I'm trying to avoid agreements that appear hostile or are laden with legaleze and/or pages of fine print -- really just trying to keep it plain English & simple.

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    Quote Originally Posted by Shadowman View Post
    You should include two types of model releases, one for casual shooting and one for professional services.
    Thanks Steve,

    Definately something to consider.

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    Quote Originally Posted by shreds View Post
    Have you considered taking part or all payment in advance. Saves a lot of hassle chasing non or late payers?
    Thanks for that. I'm the first to admit that this is definately the norm in many parts of the world (including to a degree here), but I'm not a big fan of that for two reasons ...

    1. I've never really had a problem with people paying -- possibly because of the type of client I attract, and possibly because I develop a good rapport with them.

    2. It's another barrier to entry that I want to avoid -- there's very much a perception that "once someone has my money it's one heck of a struggle to get it back if they don't deliver the goods to the standard I expect" - so with my policy of risk reversal, I'm really saying "deal with me and there is no risk" even to the point where I wouldn't charge someone if they weren't happy. Often when people hear that their knee-jerk reaction is that people will rip me off, but in reality, although some might, because of the risk reversal strategy, I'm already waaaaaay ahead.

    Traditionally people paid for services and or goods when they'd been delivered -- so asking beople to pay BEFORE the service or goods are delivered is really a round-about way of saying "I don't trust you to pay, so I'm wanting payment in advance to cover my butt".

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    Re: Model Release - What do you think

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    ...
    Quote Originally Posted by Donald
    ...
    The photographs are not to be used in unrelated advertising without written permission from me...
    Seems rather blunt to be honest -- I'm trying to write it in such a way as they feel like it clarifies what they can expect, and not have it read like a document designed solely to cover my rear-end.
    I think you might have misunderstood the phrasing here, as it's a strong limitation on what the photographer can do, so yes, blunt formula, but not towards the customer (and it is clear). To clarify: I read that whole release to be written as "I, the model, tell you, the photographer, what you can and can not do with images you took from me"

    Remco

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