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Old 1st of June 2011 (Wed)   #1
avimagery
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Default What's reasonable for a model release?

Background: I recently attended my first groupshoot put on by a few guys on Model Mayhem, and it was a lot of fun. I got to work with some stunning models, and learned a thing or two about working with them. I'm still new to the whole process though, having only shot landscapes, aircraft and family events for most of my life. After the shoot, I processed a few of the pictures and was quite pleased with a number of them, which I added to my portfolio. None of my work is intended to be sold, only used as self promotion and marketing. One of the pictures I would like to use on the back of my business card, and after contacting the model she requested I get a model release. I agree, It think it makes it legit and covers my butt, should anything come up surrounding the image. I've never had to deal with this yet, and am now wiser to the process for future shoots.

Here's my question: The model in question is not published, nor is it her full time job; like me, she does these shoots for fun. She has asked for an $80 fee for the release (keep in mind I did pay her $40 for the time we shot 1-on-1's at the group shoot, and we had an agreement that I would send her at least 6 of the final shots; I gave her 12.) Is $80 a reasonable sum? She claims that other photographers told her she should go higher, but if I recall, most of the release's usually ran about $10-20.

What's your verdict?
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Old 1st of June 2011 (Wed)   #2
Mike22487
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

Ive never heard of someone charging a photographer to sign a model release, you paid her $40 for the shoot? she should have paid you for the pictures she got from you, next time specify that it will be a trade for pictures shoot (TFP), technically you should have had the release signed before one frame was shot

you should be able to find samples of releases on this forum you can mesh together to make one to your liking
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Old 1st of June 2011 (Wed)   #3
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

As Mike said, she's been paid, but "publishing" the image on your business card is outside of the usual parameters of a shoot like that. Personally, I wouldn't pay her $0.80 more & would just forget her when I booked a model in the future because I suspect that she will be a PITA, even though she's within her rights here.

Model Releases: Sample Forms That Protect Photographers

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Old 1st of June 2011 (Wed)   #4
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

I don't think she's being a PITA. Although you may not be versed in model releases, I'm sure whoever set up the groupshoot is...and deliberately excluded having the models sign any kind of blanket release. However, they should also have fully advised the participating photographers of the restrictions that imposes. They didn't do anyone a service with that omission.

Although you don't intend to sell the images to a third party, your own use is indeed commercial--she would be foolish not to insist on a release, and $80 isn't very much at all for commercial use. At this point, it's not just shooting for fun anymore, it's business.

Last edited by RDKirk : 1st of June 2011 (Wed) at 13:42.
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Old 1st of June 2011 (Wed)   #5
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

+1 RD said it all!!
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Old 2nd of June 2011 (Thu)   #6
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

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Originally Posted by RDKirk View Post
I don't think she's being a PITA.
Didn't say that she was. I said, "I suspect that she will be..."

Part of her job should include gaining exposure & encouraging photogs (clients) to want to work with her.
Most models would be happy to get the free exposure in this situation without insisting on the extra pay, & I resist being nitpicked by someone who's been paid, received more prints than were "contracted" for, & insists on her rights to the possible detriment of her own marketing efforts.
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Old 2nd of June 2011 (Thu)   #7
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

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Didn't say that she was. I said, "I suspect that she will be..."

Part of her job should include gaining exposure & encouraging photogs (clients) to want to work with her.
Most models would be happy to get the free exposure in this situation without insisting on the extra pay, & I resist being nitpicked by someone who's been paid, received more prints than were "contracted" for, & insists on her rights to the possible detriment of her own marketing efforts.
Someone might also say, "Most photographers would be happy to get free exposure in this situation without insisting on the extra pay....," and I would disagree there as well.

They had an initial agreement that included pay for "practice and fun" time. That agreement did not include any releases or licenses for either party for further commercial use. That agreement was concluded and done when the OP delivered the products, even if he delivered more than the agreement required.

Having delivered more than the agreement required did not imply that any additional performance on the model's part was required. There is no "I gave you more than I agreed, so I get to demand more than you agreed." I would not accept that as a photographer or a businessman, and I would not expect anyone else to accept it either.

So now the OP wants an additional service that was not included in the orginal agreement--yes, just as I would expect to provide an additional license for an additional service, so should the model.

And I reject the "you should be happy to do free work for greater exposure" argument as a photographer, so I would not be surprised if she rejected it as a model.
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Old 2nd of June 2011 (Thu)   #8
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

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Originally Posted by RDKirk View Post
They had an initial agreement that included pay for "practice and fun" time. That agreement did not include any releases or licenses for either party for further commercial use. That agreement was concluded and done when the OP delivered the products, even if he delivered more than the agreement required.
I didn't say that she wasn't within her rights to ask for more money. But I don't think she's acting in her own best interests.
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Old 2nd of June 2011 (Thu)   #9
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

On shoots like the one you mentioned I have all the models sign releases in exchange for select photos on a cd. Part of what they get is a license to use said photos in their portfolios (which includes submitting to agencies for consideration for work).

If they want me to pay then they had better be an awesome model with such a unique look that I would believe their photos would actually bring me business... and they wouldn't be getting anything other than the pay.

Personally I would sooner pay for a good mua before I would pay for a model. It's amazing what a good mua can do to someone's look.
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Old 2nd of June 2011 (Thu)   #10
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

Quote:
Originally Posted by thebishopp View Post
On shoots like the one you mentioned I have all the models sign releases in exchange for select photos on a cd. Part of what they get is a license to use said photos in their portfolios (which includes submitting to agencies for consideration for work).
Yes, that should have been taken care of by the organizers, but apparently wasn't.
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Old 2nd of June 2011 (Thu)   #11
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RDKirk View Post
Yes, that should have been taken care of by the organizers, but apparently wasn't.
I've done a few group shoots, typically you pay extra for a model release if you like the shots, since the OP didn't pay on the spot (20-40) and work a deal with the model. $80 seems really fair to me. Pay it and make those shots work for you!! Sounds like shes keeping it real!!

Its hard, but the lesson I've learned..get that release worked out before you start shooting!! and before showing any shots to the models!!
They see you have a hot shot the price goes up.

Another area to watch out for is the switch up..girl shoots topless and then writes 'no nipples' on release..that one cause me some grief..great shots, release and controversy grrrr never shoot with that model again!

work out the deal and get the signatures early!!!

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Old 2nd of June 2011 (Thu)   #12
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

Ok OP, I'm curious. What do these photos look like? Post at least one of what you consider your best photo so we can weigh in on if it is even worth paying extra for her to sign a model release.
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Old 2nd of June 2011 (Thu)   #13
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

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Ok OP, I'm curious. What do these photos look like? Post at least one of what you consider your best photo so we can weigh in on if it is even worth paying extra for her to sign a model release.
I see unimpressive girls in advertisements all over town, and I still think every one of them deserved to make at least $120 on the gig. I don't think any commercial modeling image worth using at all is worth less than that.
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Old 2nd of June 2011 (Thu)   #14
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

Thanks for the input. I've learned my lesson when dealing with the models at these groupshoots. In the future, I am going to be sure to get the release the day of the event, and take your advice about doing it before the first pic is even taken.

Bishop, here is a link to my original post of her pics, although after reading this thread I'm starting to wonder if I need to take it down until I get the release: http://photography-on-the.net/forum/....php?t=1034084
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Old 2nd of June 2011 (Thu)   #15
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Default Re: What's reasonable for a model release?

generally speaking you can display the photos, you just can't grant anyone commercial usage of them or use them yourself in advertising. heck if you wanted to you could even sell prints of them as fine art.

Just hopped over and looked at them.

IMO you could easily replicate those shots with a model who has signed a tfcd model release agreement with you. Cost you nothing other than the time it takes to get there, take the photos, and then pp them later. No offense to the "model", she is cute, but personally she would have to be a heck of a lot better for me to pay her (and I have seen a few that I would be willing to pay). For god's sakes man you live in San Diego.
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