Starting a business specializing in portraiture

Started Jan 24, 2014 | Discussions thread
joeybob Contributing Member • Posts: 627
Re: Starting a business specializing in portraiture

spytrek007 wrote:

I need some advice here. I am starting a new business and will be specializing in outdoor or on location portraits. My target market is models/actors, couples, families and children.

Sounds easy enough...

For models, I understand that one has to have a model release form to be able to use their images on ones portfolio.

Models - what kind of models? What kind of photos?

If you intend to use photographs of a person that you take in your portfolio yes a release is a good idea.

Do i need model release forms when photographing couples, children, families or any similar form?

Couples, families and children can all be models as well. If you want to use them in your portfolio then yes it would be wise to have them sign a release indicating that they agree to that.

Also, what kind of use do the models / families, couples children get from the images? Do they get print rights? Will you grant them reproduction rights? Transfer of copyright? Can they publish the images on social media sites? Can they alter/edit the images you give them?

If your intent is to use images of them for your portfolio then yes a release signed by them allowing you to do so would be at least prudent. If you are charging for your images you may need to draw up a contract so that as clients, they know what to expect from you. Likewise, what use do they get in regard to the images?

Do i need insurance as i would be shooting outdoors or on location?

Technically yes if you do not want to assume the risk / liability that your business/activities may incur. You may also require a property release depending on where you are shooting as well as a permit to shoot there.

And finally for casual shoots, is it safe to photograph models below the age of 18?

Again, what kind of model and what kind of images? "Casual" can mean a variety of a variety of people. A photo of a 17 year old girl in her pajamas could be viewed by some people as "casual" and "Risque' or provocative" to others.

The business will be under UK law.

I'm sure there is either someone here from the UK that has a photo business that can provide more specific detail as to laws and regulations in your location. Alternatively, you could reach out to professional portrait photographers in your area and ask to assist them in exchange for or pay them for their advice.

Here are a couple of stories as to why being insured as a photographer is a good idea:

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