Do you have questions about wedding photos and copyright restrictions? Many couples never think to ask about making prints of their wedding day photos or about sharing them on their social media accounts; until they get a notice from the photographer that this can result in a lawsuit. Others are going about their day when they see their wedding photos come up in an advertisement or in a bridal magazine and find out there is nothing they can do about it. There are a few key things you will want to know about your wedding photos and will want to discuss with your photographer before you sign your contract.
1. Who owns the images?
Many couples think that once they hire a wedding photographer and receive the final images that they then own the copyright to them, but this is not the case. In almost all cases the photographer owns the copyright to your images, which means they can use them in any way they choose without having to inform you about it. You can buy the copyright to your images from the photographer if they offer it, but this often comes with a high price tag and some photographers will not even consider selling the rights.
2. Copyright restrictions?
Since your photographer owns your images this can limit what you can do with them. Some may require you to make additional prints only through them, which many couples don’t mind since the quality of the prints tend to be much greater. Some other restrictions can include not being able to share your photos on your social media account unless they show the photographer’s watermark or the photographer is credited.
3. The photographer’s use of your images.
Your photographer will be able to post your wedding images wherever they like including:
- Social Media
- Promotional Materials
- Stock Agencies
They can even submit your images to different magazines, all without your additional consent and most often without you even knowing.
While the copyright aspects of your wedding contract can seem like an intimidating matter to discuss, most photographers are easy to work with. You can ask for adjustments in your agreement that require the photographer to contact you about how they will be using the images but keep in mind this will often come with an additional fee.