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Watermarking - Perhaps a Stupid Question?
Old 01-24-2006, 04:11 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Sorry to run this up the pole, but I have not found a clear answer in an hour of searching, and I can't read anymore. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/confused.gif[/img]

When doing TFCD work, do you watermark the final images, or just the proofs?

And...

If a model has done a TFCD session, has HQ finished images on the CD that are Watermarked images, can these be used in her book, or will she have to get clean copies?

I am delivering a CD tomorrow (actually it's tomorrow already - so Tuesday) and need to know if I should watermark the finished images before I burn it.

Thanks All for sharing your wisdom!

Norman Wilson
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Re: Watermarking - Perhaps a Stupid Question?
Old 01-24-2006, 07:08 AM   #2 (permalink)
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This is only my thought as I have not actually worked with a "professional" model.
What I've been doing in the past is just putting my Copyright and name on the photo somewhere. As of yet I haven't run into an issue but I think you have raised a good thought here for some of us.
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Re: Watermarking - Perhaps a Stupid Question?
Old 01-24-2006, 08:30 AM   #3 (permalink)
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<center>
Are you referring to copyright or watermark? They are 2 different things. A copyright is just that. A watermark is an identifying mark that can either be very difficult to see and in some cases impossible to see with the naked eye.

I place my copyright on images that I give the model and I also have it on my release that all images used must have my copyright legibly printed on the image. Hope this helps.


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Much ado about nothing
Old 01-24-2006, 09:14 AM   #4 (permalink)
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In the US (and I will assume Canada as well), your image is copyright protected the instant you press the shutter button. The non-existence of a "watermark" or "who done it" mark is completely un-necessary for legal protection. If you want to have claims to damages (i.e., $$$$) for copyright violation, register your images with the gubmint. (For you Atlanta-area photogs, there is a kick ass seminar on these issues happening in March.)

For images I use on the web, to promote or show off my work, I include my ©2006, Ed Selby tag as well as my website. I may or may not include the model's name or contact info. In fact, on my website, I don't show the model's names (although they are there in the code of the page - but that's another story). The reason is that I am promoting me, not the model.

I don't require a model to make any indication of me as the photographer on any image she uses on-line for her promotion. Again, she's promoting herself, not me.

In fact, I have never seen a photographer's name on any image in a model's printed portfolio. Someone told me (I wish I could remember who and when) that a "real agency" scoffs at such images.

Of course, I'm not a working pro. I have never been hired by an agency to shoot so much as a dirty floor much less a model, so I could be completely wrong.

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Re: Watermarking - Perhaps a Stupid Question?
Old 01-24-2006, 09:39 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Watermarks on portfolio prints are tacky. For the web, they're o.k.
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Re: Much ado about nothing
Old 01-24-2006, 10:10 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Ed

Two things. One - the copyright laws in Canada are very different. Two - the problem with putting "slugs" or watermarks on a model's images is that it does limit the use and it tempts the model to do something like crop the image (i.e. mangle the image).
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Re: Watermarking - Perhaps a Stupid Question?
Old 01-24-2006, 11:35 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Thank you for the replies... seems I need to clarify a little.

I'm should not have used the term watermark... As Marc points out, I was referring to a simple copyright stamp, visible but not invasive, in one corner of the image/print. I had not thought of the digital masking that has been done in the example (nice shot by the way), and not sure that I would. There is plenty of space for a small but ledgible copyright stamp in virtually every image.

You opinions help! Thanks
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Re: Watermarking - Perhaps a Stupid Question?
Old 01-24-2006, 06:43 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Unless the model and I have reached some separate agreement (and I'm always open to such requests), my copyright goes somewhere, unobtrusively, onto the image whether it's a high quality print-sized image or one that's downsized for the web.

I HAVE given models high quality print-sized images that don't have a copyright on the image... however, what I PREFER to do is to have the prints made by a lab that includes a copyright notice on the back of the print. Usually the model is wanting an image for her print portfolio and the only thing I'd be worried about is someone slipping one of the images out of the portfolio while it's out of the model's hands (happened to us, once). As long as a copyright notice is included SOMEWHERE on the print, the copyright office has said that it's considered to be properly noticed as far as the law goes.


This is Stephanie
<center>
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Re: Watermarking - Perhaps a Stupid Question?
Old 01-24-2006, 09:23 PM   #9 (permalink)
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If you are truly concerned about how your images are presented or transported,
why not just spell out it's use in a contract? With a proprietary contract you
can specify the use and have some sort of agreement for financial penalties
for it's violation.

Doesn't matter if it's TFP or general commerce.

Or, if you really want to watermark your images, why not just subscribe to
Digimarc technology (http://www.digimarc.com). Find the plan and services
that fit your needs and you can have your unique id embedded in the images, (including print) that is invisible.

Plus, as Andy Perlman states so often that this should be a "sticky" on the
forum, how to go about copyright registration with the goverment. Goverment
registration backed with digital embedding will truly allow for all intents
and purposes provide plenty of legal firepower.

Some people complain about the costs ( as low as $50.00 per year) then go out and buy Alien Bees or new lenses or some other do-hickey that costs hundreds of
dollars but balk at protection for their photos.

These same people will talk about how valuble their images are yet fail to
do a cost benefit of this type of protection.

I've benefitted from digital watermark by several thousand dollars, simply
because the images were highly proprietary and the "thieves" did not know
they were embedded with proof of ownership till it was too late. It was
cheaper for them to settle than go to court.

If you are going to use technology, use it fully to protect yourself as well.

Greg.
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Re: Watermarking - Perhaps a Stupid Question?
Old 01-25-2006, 04:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I'll tell you what I do.

I put my badge on all web size images. I normally give the model 10 retouched web size (640 on the long side, 72dpi) images. I also let them see what I call outtakes, which are images I don't think totally suck. These are also web size and badged. But I also put the words "Outtake do not distribute" on them in an obvious place. I tell the model if she likes one of these images I'll retouch it for her.

I did this after one of the outtakes appeared as a model's main image on O M P. I found the image she was using and retouched it - needed color correction and sharpening - sent it to her asking her to replace the image. Which she did. Now I make those images so they won't want to try and use them.

My badge has my URL on it and I'm glad when they post it anywhere.

As for prints, I make them for them and there is no badge on it. (They are on a layer in PS that I turn off.)

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