If you're an adult and you want to book a session for a minor child, please read this:
We won't photograph minor children without at least one of their parents, a legal adult guardian or other authorized adult present during the session. At least one adult who accompanies a minor child to a photo shoot must sign our session contract to certify that they (the adult) are either the child's parent or legal guardian and can legally speak and act on behalf of the child, or that they are an adult at least 18 years old and have been authorized in writing, signed by the parent or legal guardian, to accompany the child to the photo session. If the adult has been authorized by the child's parent or legal guardian to accompany the child to the photo session, we require a copy of the signed, written permission so we can maintain it in our files. Without the appropriate signed document in our hands, we won't proceed with a photo session that includes minor children. This applies whether or not the accompanying adult is to be photographed during the session. We require the accompanying adult to be present at the session location and to observe the photo session in its entirety.
This is a prudent action for us, and we don't bend on it in any way. The safety of children is paramount, and we take that very seriously. We don't want any parent to fear for their child's safety while they're with us during a photo session, and we don't want children to be uncomfortable when they're with us. The best way to instill confidence in the parent and child is to make sure a parent, guardian or other trusted adult accompanies the child to the photo session location and remains there with the child throughout the session. We absolutely will not violate this rule. One of the questions we'll ask you before we book the session with you is whether or not you'll bring minors with you to the session. If you say you will, at that point we'll discuss this rule with you to make sure you understand what we'll ask of you.
If you’re an adult at least 18 years old but look like you could be younger than 18 ...
... we may ask you to show us your state-approved photo identification to prove you’re an adult at the time we book the photo session. You’ll eventually have to sign our session contract to certify that you’re an adult, but we need some assurance of that before we take your money and book the session. We don’t mean to offend you, but we won’t knowingly risk the legal entanglements that could arise from us photographing minor children without the appropriate authority. If you don’t look obviously 18 or older, we have no choice but to assure ourselves that you are, in fact, an adult, using all reasonable means available to us. We must do this before we take your money to book the session and is one reason why we do all our bookings in person and take payments in person.
It might be maddening to have to prove you’re 18 years old just to have your picture taken, but if you’re 18 years old and are mistaken for someone younger than that, enjoy it while you can. Looks eventually fade, and you one day you may wish you still looked like you were 18 years old. Believe us. We know.
Copyrights: This is an important issue for us and our customers to understand. We take it very seriously and hope you do, too.
A copyright is a legal right granted by law that gives creators of original works the exclusive right to control the use and distribution of their works. A copyright exists from the moment a work comes into existence, and the maker of that work owns that copyright until he or she legally gives it up, or until enough time has passed to cause the copyright to naturally expire. The existence of the copyright does not depend on whether the maker has registered the copyrighted work with the U.S. Copyright Office, though registering the copyright gives the maker much more legal leverage to obtain judgments against people who infringe on the maker's copyrights.
Copyright law applies to photographic works. When you buy photographic prints from us, you own the physical prints; they’re your personal property, but Scott Martin Photography LLC owns the copyright to those prints. When you buy digital files from us, you own the individual files (jpeg copies of the original RAW files) and the disk that contains them, but Scott Martin Photography owns the copyright to those files.
We allow you to have those prints or digital files for specific uses only, and you agree in writing that you’ll abide by our authorization. For most people it’s not an issue, because most people just want the prints to hang on their wall, put in their photo albums, give to friends and family, put on Facebook or satisfy a particular business need. Pictures in hand, job done, no problems. We happily sell you our products to do these kinds of things because that’s what we’re in business to do.
But we must guard against the possible misuses to which someone might put the images we produce; so we add our copyright information to all images that come out of our cameras. And we include copyright information in our standard business agreement that we sign with each of our customers before we do a photo session with them. The business agreement we sign with our customers spells out what we authorize our customers to do with the images we produce, and we hope our customers respect and abide by that agreement.
In return, we don’t misuse the images of our customers that we produce during our photo sessions. Our written business agreement for regular portraiture allows us to use customer images to promote our business, and that’s all. Customer images become part of our portfolio, and we use our portfolio to attract people to our business by displaying images on our web sites and in printed promotional materials. The only person to whom we’ll sell your portrait images is you. We maintain at all times the integrity of our business relationship with you. Some of our photography is for the purpose of selling the images for possible publication in books, magazines, or other commercial venues, and we have a contract for that, but that's not part of our regular portrait contract.