Potential upcoming gig wants the RAW files

DepthOfFocus

TPF Noob!
Joined
Aug 6, 2013
Messages
36
Reaction score
7
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
Hey Guys - While I was shooting a wedding on the weekend, a couple (who are both hobbyist photographers) approached me to do their wedding next month. They mentioned how their experts in PS and wanted the RAW files themselves so they can do the editing to cut costs and to their taste.

From MY perspective -I don't have any major issues with this. I would definitely note this in the contract and clearly state the photos/services will be provided on an AS-IS basis.

From your experiences, and from a business perspective, are there any serious issues by providing them the RAWs, even if they're negotiating this beforehand?

Thanks!
 

pixmedic

I am the Lord thy Mod
Staff member
Supporting Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2012
Messages
15,386
Reaction score
7,658
Location
Central Florida
Website
www.flickr.com
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
we dont give out raw files to anyone. not even friends and family. doesnt matter if they are photographers or not.
if someone hires you as a photographer, they are purchasing your skills to provide a finished product. that has YOUR name on it.
if they want to do the editing, you have no idea what the final product will be like, and you could be judged by someone elses work.
what if someone else sees those pictures and finds out you shot them, and assumes it is all your work? you could be hired based on a final product you may not be able to provide, depending on the level of editing the other people are able to do.
if all they need is someone to press a shutter button, they can get a friend or family member to take the pictures, and they can do the editing.

when you hire a photographer, you are basing that decision on what their final product looks like. you would be giving up all creative control of your photos.
I wouldn't do that, personally speaking. we get emails from time to time from people wanting portraits or an event covered that want the raw files to do their own editing...
I "HATE :madmad:" turning down work (IE:money) but I will not turn over anything but a finished product to a client.
I wouldn't blame you for taking the money though. it really comes down to how badly you want/need the work, and how much you care about your reputation.
Its like doing work for very cheap. once you start doing it for people, it becomes expected and is a hard reputation to shake.
 

kathyt

Been spending a lot of time on here!
Joined
Oct 11, 2012
Messages
3,759
Reaction score
1,887
Can others edit my Photos
Photos OK to edit
Heck no. If they don't trust you as their wedding photographer then they should look elsewhere. If they are trying to cut corners then let them do so at someone else's expense. If I would ever consider selling a RAW file it would be for a commercial type contract and the price would be much higher then my normal fees.
 

KmH

In memoriam
Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
41,401
Reaction score
5,706
Location
Iowa
Website
kharrodphotography.blogspot.com
Can others edit my Photos
Photos OK to edit
Sell them the Raw files, but charge a hefty premium for doing so.
For 2 reasons:
1. You lose all potential advertising and promotional value from those Raw files for your business, because not all the edits to those files will be yours.
2. You lose the potential of licensing the images elsewhere.

Hopefully, your contract already has a use license clause.
 

Light Guru

Been spending a lot of time on here!
Joined
Apr 27, 2011
Messages
3,403
Reaction score
678
Location
Salt Lake City, UT
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
They mentioned how their experts in PS and wanted the RAW files themselves so they can do the editing to cut costs and to their taste

If someone wants the raw files I would actually charge more, and at that point that are not saving any money.
 

Designer

Been spending a lot of time on here!
Joined
Apr 13, 2012
Messages
18,505
Reaction score
4,852
Location
Iowa
Can others edit my Photos
Photos OK to edit
(just an aside) Have you seen their editing? Are they good? Does their style include "instagram" type filters, goofy tilting, and selective colorizing? Is there anything in their style that would harm your reputation?

Just wondering.
 

vintagesnaps

Been spending a lot of time on here!
Joined
Jan 13, 2013
Messages
8,918
Reaction score
2,946
Location
US
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
Next month?? That makes me wonder if they've been shopping around and might be having a hard time finding someone to do this on the terms they want. I don't know that too many good photographers would agree to this.
 

nycphotography

No longer a newbie, moving up!
Joined
Dec 7, 2012
Messages
963
Reaction score
261
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
People get so uptight about this... geez.

I'd do this in a heartbeat. It's not like I'm expecting to make anything off the pictures of Joe and Jane Schmo. And if I am then something is already rotten with my photography business. Get paid for a day of shooting and NOT have to schlub around for hours on end processing and printing? Please... it's a gift from heaven.

Basically, they want to pay you to shoot it and nothing else. Pick a number for what that day is worth to you. If your wedding season is filled up, and booking that day with another client is worth $X, then tell them that, and that's your price, no discounts, as that's the opportunity cost of one of your precious wedding season dates. If however your calendar is open, and shooting it is simply additive income... then pick a value for your day that reflects that.

You'll still reserve the right to use the images for promotion since it's already in your contract, and IF YOU'RE ALL UPTIGHT that they might "damage your reputation"?? somehow?? then there is a VERY SIMPLE fix for this. Take an ink pen, and add the following line to your contract: "Client agrees that Photographer may not be identified or associated in any way with any RAW images, nor with any images not post-processed exclusively by Photographer ."

See how easy that was?
 

Mach0

TPF Supporters
Supporting Member
Joined
Oct 16, 2011
Messages
2,616
Reaction score
432
Location
203
Can others edit my Photos
Photos OK to edit
Where are you from? Funny- I just got a call like this yesterday lol.
 

pixmedic

I am the Lord thy Mod
Staff member
Supporting Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2012
Messages
15,386
Reaction score
7,658
Location
Central Florida
Website
www.flickr.com
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
People get so uptight about this... geez.

I'd do this in a heartbeat. It's not like I'm expecting to make anything off the pictures of Joe and Jane Schmo. And if I am then something is already rotten with my photography business. Get paid for a day of shooting and NOT have to schlub around for hours on end processing and printing? Please... it's a gift from heaven.

Basically, they want to pay you to shoot it and nothing else. Pick a number for what that day is worth to you. If your wedding season is filled up, and booking that day with another client is worth $X, then tell them that, and that's your price, no discounts, as that's the opportunity cost of one of your precious wedding season dates. If however your calendar is open, and shooting it is simply additive income... then pick a value for your day that reflects that.

You'll still reserve the right to use the images for promotion since it's already in your contract, and IF YOU'RE ALL UPTIGHT that they might "damage your reputation"?? somehow?? then there is a VERY SIMPLE fix for this. Take an ink pen, and add the following line to your contract: "Client agrees that Photographer may not be identified or associated in any way with any RAW images, nor with any images not post-processed exclusively by Photographer ."

See how easy that was?

I don't see anyone here getting "uptight".
the OP asked a question based on other peoples experiences, and wanted their opinion on the situation.
plus, the OP specifically asked about any possible issues from a business perspective.
Which is exactly what the OP got.
I have yet to see any opinion posted here that somehow invalidates any of the others.
 

nycphotography

No longer a newbie, moving up!
Joined
Dec 7, 2012
Messages
963
Reaction score
261
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
People get so uptight about this... geez.

I'd do this in a heartbeat. It's not like I'm expecting to make anything off the pictures of Joe and Jane Schmo. And if I am then something is already rotten with my photography business. Get paid for a day of shooting and NOT have to schlub around for hours on end processing and printing? Please... it's a gift from heaven.

Basically, they want to pay you to shoot it and nothing else. Pick a number for what that day is worth to you. If your wedding season is filled up, and booking that day with another client is worth $X, then tell them that, and that's your price, no discounts, as that's the opportunity cost of one of your precious wedding season dates. If however your calendar is open, and shooting it is simply additive income... then pick a value for your day that reflects that.

You'll still reserve the right to use the images for promotion since it's already in your contract, and IF YOU'RE ALL UPTIGHT that they might "damage your reputation"?? somehow?? then there is a VERY SIMPLE fix for this. Take an ink pen, and add the following line to your contract: "Client agrees that Photographer may not be identified or associated in any way with any RAW images, nor with any images not post-processed exclusively by Photographer ."

See how easy that was?

I don't see anyone here getting "uptight".
the OP asked a question based on other peoples experiences, and wanted their opinion on the situation.
plus, the OP specifically asked about any possible issues from a business perspective.
Which is exactly what the OP got.
I have yet to see any opinion posted here that somehow invalidates any of the others.

Not to pick nits, but your exact words: "that has YOUR name on it. if they want to do the editing, you have no idea what the final product will be like, and you could be judged by someone elses work." That was the "risk" I fixed by modifying the contract to remove attribution.

I'm renovating a house now (no really I am... 16 hour days every weekend)... We wanted to do the kitchen a certain way, so I bought unfinished cabinets rather than finished ones. First, they cost half as much. Second, we already have paint shop cost (setup and supplies) for other stuff in the kitchen (custom moldings and trim), so we can incrementally paint them easily and cheaply cheaply alongside the other work we are doing for the kitchen and also have them match the other design details perfectly.

Should the cabinet maker be insulted that I didn't trust them to finish the cabinets?

Should they be insulted that I chose to pay them only for the part of the job that I can't or won't do myself?

Should the cabinet maker be worried that my paint will be horrid and they will be judged poorly by my work?

Or should the cabinet maker graciously accept the order and be happy to sell me the cabinets?

I dunno... still seems like a lot of uptight hand wringing to me. No?
 
OP
D

DepthOfFocus

TPF Noob!
Joined
Aug 6, 2013
Messages
36
Reaction score
7
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
@KmH - You make a GREAT point from a promotions perspective. I've got business based on other people seeing my watermarked images posted by past clients on Facebook.


@Designer - I haven't seen their editing style, so no idea how that will turn out.


@vintagesnaps - I don't know why they've left it to the last minute ... They were just going to rely on guests taking crappy images with their iphones and 7 year old digital cameras.


@nycphotography - You actually make some REALLY good points. It's safe for me to do this as long as note the contract accordingly. It would be nice to shoot for 8 hours without the extensive editing involved. The wedding is in September, outside of prime season, so I have nothing to loose by doing this.


@Mach0 - I'm based in Toronto
 

pixmedic

I am the Lord thy Mod
Staff member
Supporting Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2012
Messages
15,386
Reaction score
7,658
Location
Central Florida
Website
www.flickr.com
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
People get so uptight about this... geez.

I'd do this in a heartbeat. It's not like I'm expecting to make anything off the pictures of Joe and Jane Schmo. And if I am then something is already rotten with my photography business. Get paid for a day of shooting and NOT have to schlub around for hours on end processing and printing? Please... it's a gift from heaven.

Basically, they want to pay you to shoot it and nothing else. Pick a number for what that day is worth to you. If your wedding season is filled up, and booking that day with another client is worth $X, then tell them that, and that's your price, no discounts, as that's the opportunity cost of one of your precious wedding season dates. If however your calendar is open, and shooting it is simply additive income... then pick a value for your day that reflects that.

You'll still reserve the right to use the images for promotion since it's already in your contract, and IF YOU'RE ALL UPTIGHT that they might "damage your reputation"?? somehow?? then there is a VERY SIMPLE fix for this. Take an ink pen, and add the following line to your contract: "Client agrees that Photographer may not be identified or associated in any way with any RAW images, nor with any images not post-processed exclusively by Photographer ."

See how easy that was?

I don't see anyone here getting "uptight".
the OP asked a question based on other peoples experiences, and wanted their opinion on the situation.
plus, the OP specifically asked about any possible issues from a business perspective.
Which is exactly what the OP got.
I have yet to see any opinion posted here that somehow invalidates any of the others.

Not to pick nits, but your exact words: "that has YOUR name on it. if they want to do the editing, you have no idea what the final product will be like, and you could be judged by someone elses work." That was the "risk" I fixed by modifying the contract to remove attribution.

I'm renovating a house now (no really I am... 16 hour days every weekend)... We wanted to do the kitchen a certain way, so I bought unfinished cabinets rather than finished ones. First, they cost half as much. Second, we already have paint shop cost (setup and supplies) for other stuff in the kitchen (custom moldings and trim), so we can incrementally paint them easily and cheaply cheaply alongside the other work we are doing for the kitchen and also have them match the other design details perfectly.

Should the cabinet maker be insulted that I didn't trust them to finish the cabinets?

Should they be insulted that I chose to pay them only for the part of the job that I can't or won't do myself?

Should the cabinet maker be worried that my paint will be horrid and they will be judged poorly by my work?

Or should the cabinet maker graciously accept the order and be happy to sell me the cabinets?

I dunno... still seems like a lot of uptight hand wringing to me. No?

one of us just doesn't seem to understand.
could be me...but..
the OP SPECIFICALLY asked for possible business issues concerning handing out raw files.
he wasn't asking for a pat on the back, or a "go get 'em tiger", but actually LOOKING for things that could potentially go wrong with giving out raw files. (a genuine concern for some people)
the OP ASKED for these things based on peoples experiences, as well as from a business perspective.
the OP got some specific answers on some possible concerns/issues, as well as some positive aspects. noone has said anyone elses opinion here was right or wrong, just that it was how they personally felt about the question the OP asked.
seems like a thread that worked out pretty good for the OP. No? I think so.
so...im not really seeing an "uptight" part here. just because some people have differing opinions, doesnt make that opinion somehow less valid than any other. (btw, noone has said anything about YOUR opinion being less than any of the others, certainly not me, and yet you seem to be intent on attacking my opinion on the matter for some reason and calling other people uptight.)
just sayin...
 

Most reactions

ClickASnap

New Topics

Top