Free isn’t free

Had a lot of people contacting me about another pervert photographer. The best way to avoid these types of situations is to not be in them.

1. ALWAYS research a photographer. At conventions this can be hard to do on the spot so maybe ask your friends there if anyone knows him, never go off to a remote spot to shoot and always take a friend with you. Just because a guy gets a new Rebel camera for his birthday does not make him a professional or expert in the ways of modeling.

2. Free pics are never really free. Don’t want to pay a photographer? Fine but remember that any “free” pic they take is theirs to do with as they please. So any embarrassing images (upskirts, zoomed in on breast, or whatever they talk you into) pics can be plastered all over the web FOREVER. This can be avoided by always having an escort at shoots with people you don’t know or trust.

3. Don’t be afraid to say “I’m done” and walk away. If he is touching you in anyway (trying to pose you) or being persistent or forceful you might be too scared to walk away. This is why you follow step one. Escort, no remote places (woods, hotel room, etc.) If they don’t agree to an escort, don’t shoot with them!

4. TFP (time for prints) means you both shoot free in exchange for pics you can both use for your portfolios. This is great if you actually like the pics this person does. Shooting free with people, hating the pics and untagging yourself doesn’t keep those pics from being all over the web forever. Imagine if the first image people see of you when they Google you is that. Free isn’t always free.

Always make sure you know what you allowed to do with the images as well. Since contracts are rarely done at a convention, they can shoot you for free and then ambush you with “licensing fees” or try and charge you later. So again, free isn’t free.

Bad photographs are the photographer fault. It’s their job to make the model comfortable, talk (not touch) her through posing and expressions and properly paint them with light.

5. Collectors. These are the guys that love to run around taking perv shots and getting models to do stuff they’ll regret so they can brag to their friends and show them to everyone (while telling you they are for your boyfriend or private use.) I hear stories about who is a what all the time and yet girls keep working with them. All the uncomfortable hugs and touchy hands, all the polite perv comments and of course the pics where I can see the camera owner clicking his way around you to the perv shots.

When allowing someone to take your picture you are giving them permission to stare at you through a peephole that has a zoom lens and is recording everything they want into a computer. You are allowing them the right to post and share every pic you let them get away with.

Talk to friends and other models, make sure you let the photographer know up front what you are okay with AND don’t be afraid to say “NO!” A free picture isn’t free.

Posted in Model Advice, Photo Shoots, Photography

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Posted in Photography

Exposure for work?

Hate to rant but there is a trend going around where people come up with an idea to use cosplayer photos for a product and then start a kickstarter to get it paid for, with the intention of making money and only offering “exposure” as payment to all the people that did the work of creating the image.

What would happen if you tried to hire someone or buy something and told them you won’t pay themĀ but you will tell people about them? People tend to put low value on creativity. “You’re an artist that loves to do art so it’s easy for you so why should I pay you.”

Or the brainstorm idea, “With all these popular cosplayers, if we can create something using their pics, all their fans will buy it and we’ll make tons of money.”

Awesome idea, what do we pay the cosplayers that made the costume, posed in the costume and the photographer that took the photo?

“Nothing. We offer these people that already have thousands of fans, exposure.”

How would you feel if you raised the money on kickstarter, had the product made, brought it all to a con and set up a booth and every customer came up and said “I won’t pay you for it but I’ll give you exposure.”

This doesn’t apply to everyone i’m sure but cosplayers work harder than you think. They can easily spend a few hundred making a costume, hours building it, then paying for a photographer to shoot the pics. The photographer can spend hours of their time as well adding effects and polishing up the image to get it right. This is a job we love but it’s still a job and it’s kind of insulting to say, “Give me your work for free so I can make money off it.”

Rant over.

Posted in Model Advice, Photography