You may not realize it, but images can retain a lot of value to photographers. There is the value in using them in their portfolio, blog, advertisements for their business, published in magazines, reprints, and more. If they handed over the copyright to you, every time they went to use these images they would have to contact you. Some photographer's will give over the complete rights to images, but it can come at a high premium, because of this lost revenue (Some may be around $5,000). It really depends on what the perceived value of the images are.
Most of the time the release to the client will be limited. Basically the photographer does not want to lose out on revenue if the client decides to give away the images, but we still want our clients to be able to reprint the images for themselves and display them to friends.
One level of limitations is to disallow you to make printed images from the disc. This means that you could make prints at home, but if you try to take it to a commercial lab, they will not reprint the images.
In our contracts for our DVDs we give you personal use. Here is how it reads.
12. DIGITAL NEGATIVES, PRINTS and COPYRIGHTS: The photographs, digital negatives or prints produced by the PHOTOGRAPHER are protected by Copyright Law (all rights reserved) and may not be reproduced in any manner without the PHOTOGRAPHER’s explicit written permission. Upon final payment by the CLIENT, limited copyright ownership of the resulting images will be transferred to the CLIENT under the following conditions:
· The digital images provided on DVD are the property of the CLIENT for personal use and for the purposes of the reproduction and distribution of photographs to friends and relatives. This includes reprints, websites and other distribution.
· The CLIENT may send one set of photographs to newspapers for their engagement announcement and their wedding announcement.
· The CLIENT must obtain written permission from, and compensate the PHOTOGRAPHER prior to an event where The CLIENT, The CLIENT’S associates or relatives publish or sell the photographs for profit or where the photos have a possibility of profit.
One of our biggest concerns, and it rarely happens, is that we don't want our clients to be taken advantage of by some companies who will pay pennies on the dollar for beautiful photos or even giving them to them. On the other hand if the companies were dealing with a photographer they would of had to pay hundreds. If our clients do find a buyer, we are happy to negotiate and give them a good split though ;)
In many cases if clients want to submit the photos to magazines or blogs, we are happy to agree to it. We want to research the magazine and blog.
Even if a client doesn't purchase a DVD, we offer low-res and watermarked images. Just click on the image and then go to the website and click download. You will be able to download a 500px and watermarked image. All we ask is that you inform us where you are going to be using our image and you give us a credit link to Pilster Photography @ http://weddings.pilsterphotography.net
Some questions you should consider asking
• When I get a DVD will I be able to make reprints at a local lab? For myself? For my family?
• Can I put the photos on my Facebook, blog, website, etc?
• Can I give the photos to magazines or other blogs?
• Do the photos have to be watermarked if I do any of this?
• Is there anything I can't do with the photos?