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Copyright releases for my own photos

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Old 01-11-2004, 10:24 AM
Kellilou Kellilou is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 6
Copyright releases for my own photos

As is something I often do, I recently took photos of family members, and for the ones that turned out very nicely, I digitally swapped out the existing background for a studio-type backdrop:

I wanted to test Sam's Club's digital photo lab, and the attendent gave me some grief because the photos looked like they were done in a studio, but reluctantly allowed me to have them developed only after I showed her the original shots which I also included. She said she would do it, but if the manager was there I'd "need to show my license" HUH?

Anyway, my real problem is I would like to be able to email these types of photo files to my relatives so they can then put them on disk and take them somewhere to have them developed, but I'm positive they would have an even rougher time of it.

So my question is - I would like to create a blanket release form/letter for my own photos - one that my friends/family can carry with them that would be acceptable to show to an attendant for developing.

Anyone have any good examples of such a release?


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Old 01-11-2004, 01:13 PM
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catia catia is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 255
I don't have anything worth while to say on the release question.

However, I do have this to say, Great job! No wonder that SAMs Club person gave you such a hard time. :-) The results are very professional looking.

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Old 01-11-2004, 01:34 PM
Vikki Vikki is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Arizona
Posts: 883
They will not accept a blanket release, I've tried. They want a signed release for every image. They will also call the studio to verify the release.
Here's an option to consider:
I'm not sure how the "online" system works. It might be easier if you created an account online, uploaded your photos, and sent the links to the relatives. That way, they could order right from there, you wouldn't need to send out cd's, and perhaps, a one time release from you would be sufficient.

I work in a portrait studio, so I hope you don't mind if I offer a few tips on studio backdrops.
To have them look more studio like, try adding a dark gradient vignette. Also, the tree seems a bit large. A smaller tree, with a lens blur would look good.
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Old 01-11-2004, 04:33 PM
Kellilou Kellilou is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 6
"They will also call the studio to verify the release."

Funny, because there is no studio in my case! Which brings me to another concern - how in the world do I present a release from myself when I want to get these developed? How does one prove they actually own the copyright?

In a related story, a friend who is a songwriter went to kinkos to copy some of her own, handwritten music, on which she had written the copyright symble with her signature next to it. They were adament about not letting her copy her own music!

I tried having my relatives order the prints online (which is the best alternative!), but unfortunately, they're afraid to put their credit card number online, and my other relatives don't even own a computer! :-(

So I'm trying desperately to figure out a way to get them the photos so they can have them developed (i.e. pay for them themselves) and choose which ones and how many they want...

Also, thanks so much for your backdrop suggestions!!!

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