Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2001/01/03

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Subject: [Leica] Photography pricing
From: Jim Brick <>
Date: Wed, 03 Jan 2001 17:14:44 -0800
References: <000f01c075ca$80da2f00$516b193f@oemcomputer> <[]> <>

One of the most difficult concepts for the photo buying public to
comprehend is that when a self employed or freelance or amateur
photographer takes a photograph of something, the photographer owns
outright, all rights of the photograph. When a client has a photograph made
of his widget, the photographer owns the photograph of the widget and the
client can use the supplied print or transparency only for the contracted
use. The client cannot use it for any other use even though it is of his

As a photographer, if a client comes to you and says "I need a photograph
of these shoes for an ad in our regional magazine "The Monterey Quarterly"
and you say OK, it'll be $500.00 for the job. And the client places the
shoe photo in his magazine ad. Then six months later you see your shoe
photo in a national magazine, or a billboard, or bus stop poster,
wherever... you, the photographer, can sue the daylights out of the client
for basically stealing your photograph and using copyrighted material
without permission. Even though it is a photograph of his shoes and he paid
you to take the photograph. YOU STILL OWN ALL RIGHTS. The client owns
nothing. He/she has to contract with you (pay you) again for another use.
And if it is in a national magazine, the price for use goes way up.

This is not inconsistent with a fine art photographer, taking a photograph
of a beautiful landscape, making 100 30x40 LightJet prints and having at
the most $200 in each finished, mounted, framed, ready to sell print, and
selling them for $1500 each. If the photographer made them one at a time,
it would cost him nearly $500 to produce the same finished product. And
when the customer buys your fine art work, the work cannot be copied or
used anywhere for any reason other than it's intended use. Hanging on the
wall or similar use. He/she CANNOT take a digital photograph of it and put
it on his/her web page. They can take a photograph of it for insurance
purposes, or to show to their friend, but cannot USE that photograph of the
art work for any display or sale purpose.

The freelance photographer owns all! The photographer working as an
employee of a company and taking photographs for that company, owns nothing.


In reply to: Message from "Wilber Jeffcoat" <> (Re: [Leica] print pricing)
Message from MEBerube <> (RE: [Leica] print pricing)