I want to ask about the idea of a "Model Release Form", it is something that has cropped up on a few threads recently and I was surprised to find out how many photographers do not use these, especially in the case of underage Models...and I am wondering why not?
For the photographer:
1. You can earn money from the photo. A Release ensures that you can "sell" the photo, whether it be to a "stock" company or even for commercial purposes.
2. You can enter competitions. The bigger competitions insist on a model release for any portrait or identifiable person and failure to have such is grounds for disqualification.
3. You are immune to International criminal charges of exploitation and pedophilia. You are posting pictures of an underage girl online, and while the law here may be "open" about this, other countries are not, and police operations against such are now International. Try having to explain to the police, your boss and your wife, why a photo you took of a 16yr old girl in a bikini was found in the hands of a convicted pedophile. Esp. after you posted it on the Internet.
4. In the Industry it is considered standard, not asking for one to be signed says a lot about your professionalism and esp. if shooting lingerie, bikini, or even nude will lead better models to suspect you of simply being a GWC.
For the Model,
1. You protect your identity and ensure your career if you wish such will develop in the professional and artistic manner you desire.
2. You ensure you have a legal right to the use of the photos, or at least place restrictions on how they may be used. Don't want the photographer to sell them, or post them on a site you object to, a release will protect you from this or at least give you legal recourse if it happens.
3. You have a record of the shoots parameters. A good release will have a section for shoot specific notes. It's TFCD and you want all the photos, good and bad, photo-shopped or not, this is the place that this can be recorded and signed off on by all parties.
So what are peoples thoughts, both the photographers and models? Why do people not insist on them? Or is this a unique feature of shooting here in Singapore?