Every photographer has a different system with what they allow clients to do with their images, and I’m sharing mine. I don’t copyright my images. Is this risky? Maybe. Are my images sometimes posted and I’m not recognized? Absolutely. I allow all my clients to post their images, and provide a print release in case they have any problems getting prints in town.
So why do I do this? To be completely honest, I don’t know a ton about copyrights, and should learn more about them. But even if I did copyright everything I’d still provide a print release for no extra charges. If I hired a photographer for my family photos, I wouldn’t want a logo plastered across the final image that I’m framing to give to my parents. That is why when I give my clients the final gallery, there’s no logos anywhere on their images. To me, that takes away from the people and love in the photo. Yes, everyone will know who took it, but I don’t want that on there. That is just my opinion, and so it’s going to be different person to person and that’s ok! There isn’t one right answer.
Giving your clients permission to use their photos on social media actually HELPS your business! Clients are getting word out FOR you! Even if you aren’t recognized when their friends start thinking about getting photos done, they’ll just ASK them, so you’re still getting out there! Chances are if they’re a mama with young kids, they have many friends who are also mamas with young kids who will want a photographer for their annual family photos. Same goes for engagements and weddings!
Just a side note if you’re trying to reach more people, I always TAG my clients in images on Facebook! First, they want to see their pictures, and also their friends see them which helps you!
I can’t start counting the number of clients I’ve gotten because they saw their friends’ images I took posted on Facebook. That’s how my business grew and I got word out. And also, your clients WANT to share their images with others, post them on Facebook and Instagram, and get prints, so I want to make sure they CAN do that. Because that’s what I’d want to be able to do if I’m paying $100+ for family photos.
I hope this helps if you’re unsure what to do about your image rights and how you allow your clients to use them! Plus you get to see profiles like these, and it makes my heart so full.