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Author Topic: Any Pro Music and Band Photographers?  (Read 1446 times)

Sith Zombie

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Any Pro Music and Band Photographers?
« on: October 21, 2012, 06:51:04 AM »
Hi, I'm after some insights from Pro Band photographers on how are you making money?
Not because I want to follow in your footsteps, been there, had my fun. [I always got too drunk at gigs and it became hazardous to my gear]
I ask because I have recently become aware of artists such as Coldplay, LadyGaga and the Stone Roses, are asking for full ownership of merchandising and editorial rights. As I understand, you are allowed to sell your photos to one publication just once. AND you can't even use them in your portfolio.
Now I can understand the merchandising rights because they obviously don't want their band/faces printed on condoms or something inappropriate, but can you get a percentage for the photos they actually use for marketing?
As to the editorial rights, thats just plain greed.
It seems like they are getting photographers to turn up for free, work for free and then take all ownership of the work and use it to make money. Please tell me if I am missing anything, do you get a one off fee for turning up?
From an industry that is advocating artists copyrights and cracking down on pirated music, I find it highly hypocritical and upsetting that they would start trampling other artists rights just to earn more money.
Hopefully it's just a few artists with these demands.

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Any Pro Music and Band Photographers?
« on: October 21, 2012, 06:51:04 AM »

tron

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Re: Any Pro Music and Band Photographers?
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2012, 08:19:27 AM »
Well, I am  not a professional so I do not think I am entirely on topic but I would like to share my thoughts.

1. Refuse to give them rights. They do not want their copyrights infringed but I cannot think why they would infringe photographers' rights.
2. Create a black list to inform photographers of artists to avoid.
3. They would always find newbies but they are running the risk of getting what they are paying for.

Just my thoughts...
« Last Edit: October 21, 2012, 10:24:17 AM by tron »

Kernuak

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Re: Any Pro Music and Band Photographers?
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2012, 10:01:10 AM »
A few months ago, our local camera club was approached by an organisation that was promoting a fairly low key band (brat pack style music and I'd never heard of them). They were offering free entry to a concert, in exchange for being able to take photographs. The agreement however, was that they would own the copyright to the photos and would allow us to use them for internal club competitions. I was approached specifically, because the committee had seen some of my low light work, but I declined and explained why. If I was trying to get a foot on the ladder in that style of photography, then it may have been worth it to get my name known, but I was not going to give away copyright to photos I would have taken free of charge and pointed out it was exploitation. It would have been an interesting shoot, but I wasn't going to compromise my principles, even though I'm not a full time professional. For me, there has to be something in it for both parties and it is wrong to demand copyright. The legalities would probably be hazy, as there would probably be some sort of contract, with explicit agreement in the case of well known bands/brands. Ethically though, it is just wrong in my book.
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Sith Zombie

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Re: Any Pro Music and Band Photographers?
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2012, 01:08:59 PM »
Interesting story, It seems like the perceived value of photography is going down and clients are insisting on owning copyrights. Doing gigs sure is fun, and that's enough for some people but It's going to be increasingly difficult to profit from this type of photography if they wish to turn it into a career.

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Re: Any Pro Music and Band Photographers?
« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2012, 01:12:16 PM »
Hi, I'm after some insights from Pro Band photographers on how are you making money?
Not because I want to follow in your footsteps, been there, had my fun. [I always got too drunk at gigs and it became hazardous to my gear]
I ask because I have recently become aware of artists such as Coldplay, LadyGaga and the Stone Roses, are asking for full ownership of merchandising and editorial rights. As I understand, you are allowed to sell your photos to one publication just once. AND you can't even use them in your portfolio.
Now I can understand the merchandising rights because they obviously don't want their band/faces printed on condoms or something inappropriate, but can you get a percentage for the photos they actually use for marketing?
As to the editorial rights, thats just plain greed.
It seems like they are getting photographers to turn up for free, work for free and then take all ownership of the work and use it to make money. Please tell me if I am missing anything, do you get a one off fee for turning up?
From an industry that is advocating artists copyrights and cracking down on pirated music, I find it highly hypocritical and upsetting that they would start trampling other artists rights just to earn more money.
Hopefully it's just a few artists with these demands.

I've worked with many artists but mostly commercial studio stuff. I will sell all my rights if the price is right, I will sell some rights for less, and will never sell any rights for free. I usually am allowed to use them for portfolio pieces after the release of the CD/Posters/Etc...

Drizzt321

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Re: Any Pro Music and Band Photographers?
« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2012, 10:53:48 PM »
I haven't done any gigs for pay for anyone, but unless I was specifically shooting for a publication or something like (e.g. staff photographer, work for hire) I would never give up copyright. I'd certainly be happy to sign an agreement where I could not use the works in certain circumstances without getting permissions first (e.g. the merchandising as above).

Now, if the artists (more likely managers/agents/label) were making work-for-hire arrangements, that would be different, although I certainly would like to retain rights for portfolio/self-promotion. Really, once you go the work-for-hire direction, you can put anything you want into the contracts. Nothing stopping the photographers from refusing though.
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Re: Any Pro Music and Band Photographers?
« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2012, 10:53:48 PM »