Model Release?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by ababysean, Jun 18, 2010.

  1. ababysean

    ababysean TPF Noob!

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    If you shoot a model several times, do you need a release for each shoot?
     
  2. ghache

    ghache TPF Noob!

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    Yes, with the date on each one.
     
  3. AgentDrex

    AgentDrex No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I disagree, if you shoot the model, you won't need them to sign a release at all...oh, wait...you mean photography...
     
  4. ghache

    ghache TPF Noob!

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    i LOLed
     
  5. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    As always, it depends on the final use of each image.

    What are the images being used for? If you are displaying them on a personal web site, you don't need a model release.

    So the answer, based on the limited info you provide, is....maybe.
     
  6. jnm

    jnm TPF Noob!

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    you would only need a model release if the photo will be published in something like adverting, correct? does that include use on a photographers own website?
     
  7. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    From my understanding - if you or anyone else is getting money from the photo in any form/amount - you need a release.

    edit
    I would even say that any kind of advertising, though you may not be paid for it, is still generating revenue for you.

    Any commercial purpose = 'getting money', even if you don't actually receive a check for it.
     
  8. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    That is an oft repeated, but not necessarily true, Internet urban legend. Getting paid has little to do with it and some of what many think is commercial use, may not be.

    You can sell individual images as ART and don't need the permission of any people in the image. However, if you are selling so many of the same image(s) it's considered 'distribution', you will want to have a signed, properly executed model release on file from any people in the image(s).


    There are 3 considerations that determine if a model release is needed. But it is key to remember that model release law is not as cut and dried as say, traffic laws.
    • How will the photo be used is the #1 consideration.
    A model release is not needed to display any people images on a personal website. The sale of people photos as artwork is exempt from needing a model release. Using people images for self promotion on a photographers web site, in a catalog for self-promotion, in a portfolio, or making photos available for sale or licensing, is not considered a form of commercial use, as long as the people in them are not perceived as advocates or sponsors of your business and the images were not made under controlled conditions like in a studio with special photographic equipment.

    • Is the subject recognizable.
    Recognizable doesn't always mean a clear shot of someones face and it's not what the photographer considers recognizeable, but the person in the photograph, a judge and a jury.
    Here the worry is for whoever 'publishes' the image. If the photographer has licensed the image to someone else that is acting as the publisher, the publisher is the one that needs a model release. In some circumstances the photographer does become the publisher.
    • How was the image made?
    People photographs made in public places give the most latitude because people give up their right to privacy when in public. Some non-public locations also invole no expectation of privacy like concerts, amusement parks, nightclubs and other public gathering places anyone could reasonably expect the chance someone would take a photo of them.
    The two most common examples of people being photographed in a private setting are a model(s) being compensated to be photographed and someone paying the photographer to make images.

    The "private setting" condition is all encompassing and effects anything and everything in photos made under those conditions, including pets, property, and anything else in the shot.

    If you have any intentions of selling your photographs, it's a good idea to go well beyond Internet forum threads to learn the ins-and-outs of model releases, because it's a complex subject and there is a lot of urban legend online.

    I highly recommend the book: A Digital Photographer's Guide To Model Releases by the freelance photographer and photography business analyist Dan Heller.

    www.danheller.com
    www.danheller.blogspot.com
     
  9. ababysean

    ababysean TPF Noob!

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    Even just for printing say at like Walmart.
     
  10. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Printing for who? Who will be using the photo and how will it be used?
     
  11. jnm

    jnm TPF Noob!

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    so if a photographer shoots someone or a family in a studio or in their home and uses 'special photo equipment' they will need a release to use the pictures on their joeblowphotography.com website?
     
  12. Jeff Colburn

    Jeff Colburn TPF Noob!

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    Save yourself the headache and ALWAYS get a signed release. You have no idea what the future will bring, or how a model's career will grow. Remember the guy that had model pix of Madonna before her career took off? He wound up, among other things, having a publisher make a nice coffee table book of the images. Do you know what the first image in the book was? A photo of the signed model release.

    Have Fun,
    Jeff
     

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