When your name isn't enough...

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by Aggressor, Jan 13, 2009.

  1. Aggressor

    Aggressor TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2008
    Messages:
    183
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    For those photographers who choose to use their name for their photography business, has anyone come across a situation where their name would collide with someone else already in the business?

    My business is John Cruz Photography and serves the Greater Toronto Area. At some point, I would like to relocate to Vancouver, but there is already a more established business, Jonathan Cruz Photography there. Understanding that what I receive may not be legal advice, would it be best to use another name to prevent myself from running into any problems in the future or is my name (John Cruz) enough reason to distinguish myself from a similarly-named photographer and keep my business name?
     
  2. ~Stella~

    ~Stella~ TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2007
    Messages:
    968
    Likes Received:
    3
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    I could help you out here, but I don't know anything about Canadian law...sorry.

    As a practical matter, something like John R. Cruz would be different enough from Jonathan Cruz to distinguish it. Perhaps John R. Cruz Images (or something else) v. Jonathan Cruz Photography? Subtle, but different enough so as not to confuse your clients.

    Legally, you'd need to see what type of business he has set up (corporation v. sole proprietorship) and what naming rights come with it; it may or may not be a protected name, depending on the set-up.
     
  3. shuttercraft

    shuttercraft TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2009
    Messages:
    57
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Grants Pass Oregon
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    If you are using your name as your DBA then you need to use your full first middle and last names so no confusion will come up later.
     
  4. Aggressor

    Aggressor TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2008
    Messages:
    183
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Yeah, I thought of that, but I have 4 full names in my legal name and if I tack on 'Photography' in the end, I have to register my business name... and 4 names plus 'Photography' is just a mouthful!

    Interesting about using an initial, that may work. I think where the potential for confusion lies is that many 'Jonathans' are shortened to 'Jon.'
     
  5. amkphotography

    amkphotography TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2008
    Messages:
    146
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Colorado
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I wish I could help you but I've never run into such issues. However, I use my initials for my business name. AMK Photography.
     
  6. Aggressor

    Aggressor TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2008
    Messages:
    183
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Thanks for all your suggestions. I have decided to change my business name to John Cruz Creative Solutions in order to avoid any possible conflicts. I will retain John Cruz Photography for now until I can transition my branding to the new name.

    Although it's a little late to change it again now, what do you think of the new name?
     
  7. LarissaPhotography

    LarissaPhotography TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2008
    Messages:
    529
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Belleville, IL, USA
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Adding Creative Solutions will work for you. One extra benefit to somehow having Photography at the end of your business name is that Google will naturally associate your website with Photography, and you'll rank a little higher in search results. As far as the web site goes, is the domain name for your business available as a .com?
     
  8. Aggressor

    Aggressor TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2008
    Messages:
    183
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Hmmm... Forgot about the search results. Good point about that.

    I already have johncruz.net secured. Unfortunately, the .com is registered to some Hawaiian singer. I was thinking of securing the .ca instead to demonstrate a purely Canadian presence.
     

Share This Page

Search tags for this page

middle vs last name in photography business