Wedding Photographer and Raw

Started 3 months ago | Questions thread
Shadowsurfer Contributing Member • Posts: 680

tbcass wrote:

Shadowsurfer wrote:

tbcass wrote:

Aaron801 wrote:

... I wound't think that this is standard practice. I might shoot such a thing RAW and do editing (that's the way that I like to work) but I consider my edited versions of the photos to be the "product" that I've been hired to produce. I would probably have a contract that stipulate this and not even mention anything about RAW, but if a client really wants that stuff then I would renegotiate and change extra for that...

Why charge extra? It's no extra work or effort. Once the wedding is over what value are the RAW files to the photographer? If they want to keep them just make copies to give to the client. It just seems like a scam to me.

The Raw files can be a source of further income. Relatives and friends might contact the photographer for copies of the prints the clients bought.

In that case have them sign an agreement that they will not copy, distribute or profit off those RAW files in any way. The JPEGs are often given to the client with which the client could make prints.

Reprints can be a good source of income.

Reprints can be made off the JPEGs which are usually given to the client. We are talking about RAWs. Heck, decent copies can be made off good 8x10 prints.

Also never let anybody you do not trust, work on your Raw files. It could be a major cause of lost reputation, if substandard PP copies of your Raw files start to circulate.

See my previous sentences which address those issues. One of the most important things in any business is good customer relations. If the client feels the photographer is being unfair or ripping them off they will make sure they tell everybody they know not to hire them.

I have my own business in another sector, but good business relations are built on trust and clarity in every sector including photography.

When I give a client a quote, I am clear about what he is going to get for his money and more importantly, what is not included.

My standard quotation letter has a list of exclusions. It avoids a lot of argument and bad will.

If it is clear in the contract that Raw files are not included, then nobody can whinge about getting "ripped off".

A photographer who gives away copies of his Raw files is a fool.

A Raw file is an intermediate step between pressing  the shutter and the post processing that delivers the final print of JPEG.

It is very foolish to give away a set of files, where the customer can clearly see all the little errors and missteps that occurred during the shoot.

When I shot performing arts, a good proportion of the frames were rejects that I did not want the wider world to see. I wanted my clients to see only the successful frames.

Shooting digital is no different. If Raw files are excluded in the contract, it is not too difficult to explain to a client why they are excluded.

Sure "illegal" copies can be scanned from prints or printed off from JPEGS, It happened to me too. But that is a whole different can of worms.

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