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Models and talent are key components to a shoot, they bring life to your ad and help to advertise your product and service. Before shooting a single frame or taking a single photo of your talent it’s crucial that you have them sign the release form. Unfortunately, these forms often get overlooked.

A model release form is simply:

“A document the model signs to release the photographer/videographer against claims for the use of the photograph/video of their image and likeness, it allows (or restricts) the use of said images/videos for the purposes of promotion or sales.”

The document outlines and sets the terms and conditions of what you can and cannot do with the images in order to protect all of the parties involved.

There are many reasons for why you should have the talent fill out a model release form, but here are the main two:

1. Both Parties Understand The Terms And Conditions:

By placing all the terms and conditions on the form, you let the participating model know what is going on. It’s also good practice to be as clear and transparent as possible to avoid any conflicts or things that could jeopardize your production.

2. Protecting Your Investment:

We all want to believe that people are good hearted and are not malevolent, for the most part I would agree. But people can often change their mind, and take back the permission they previously gave you. Productions cost money, and they can be expensive, and the last thing you want is investing all that time and money into a final product that you can’t even use because the model is threatening legal action and compensation if you do. This might seem like a rare occurrence, but even so. Why risk it?

It takes less than 5 minutes to go over a model release form with your participating talent and it will save you a lot of time, money, and headaches by doing so. Take the time to go over the form with your model and explain what the terms and conditions mean, and where the video is going to be used online. You build trust and rapport with your model right off the bat.

Now you see why model release forms are something you cannot skip out on in your next production! If you’re looking to create a model release form or don’t know where to start!

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