I had a shoot recently, a commissioned pole shoot, and the client had reservations about one of the clauses in my model release, which states that they may not see images before I show them off to other people. This was added as a result of a conversation I had with another photographer who was quite upset by a model outraged because they didn’t get final approval. The situation wasn’t quite the same – the model in that case was working on the photographer’s project, and so wasn’t ‘the client’.

In any case, if I have an awesome photo, of course I don’t want to have someone else deciding whether I can show it to people. I use the same release for my own project and for client shoots, so this clause is open to negotiation. In fact, when my client in this story signed the release, we added a special condition stating that I needed her approval before releasing any images.

It’s not a common request, but it’s totally fair. I mean, I’m not out to embarrass anyone, but sometimes it happens that the images I think are amazing don’t meet the client’s standards, and hey, they’re the ones paying for my time, they’re the customer I want to please, so for something like this I’m happy to agree to the revision.

But then she brought up my Patreon supporters, and she actually found and read the Patreon tiers, and asked whether any of her behind-the-scenes images might find their way into the patron rewards.

Now that’s a good question!

I never considered the issue before. Patrons get access, but yeah, whoah now, there might be a limit on that access. The same rules apply, right? I’m not out to embarrass anyone, but once again, my standards my not exactly align with the client’s.

I assured her that, in this case, the same terms applied: nothing’s released without her approval. And, because that’s a really important issue, I’m going to be making an update to the model release, explicitly asking the model or client to opt out of having these behind the scenes shots shared.

Because, geez, good question. I’m really glad she asked. ^_^

And so, with full authorization, here’s a photo of Katerina!