UK PORTRAIT CONTRACT
DESIGNED BY PHOTOGRAPHERS FOR PHOTOGRAPHERS
APPROVED BY UK LAWYERS
THE CONTRACT IS FOR YOU IF…
- You are a portrait photographer based either in England or Wales
- You have a contract – or T & C’s, but it’s something you made up and you have no idea whether it actually complies with legislation
- You don’t have time or funds to get a lawyer to write you a contract from scratch
- You want clarity & peace of mind when dealing with clients
- You are a professional and like things done properly
- You have enough on your plate without additional worry about what could happen to your business if you are NOT protected
We are confident that this is the most comprehensive contract template for UK portrait photographers on the market today – covering everything from cancellation, proofing and payment policies, to intellectual property rights and even conduct!
- Updates for at least two years (until Jan 2020) to ensure it still complies with Uk Laws ( England & Wales only)
- Step by step walkthrough to customise the contract for your business easily
- Supplied as Word documents so that they’re easy to print on your headed paper or easily transferred to an online form like Machforms
SO, WHO ARE WE?
This is us – Maria and Sally. We have more than 20 years of portrait photography experience between us and created Harmony and Blue to share the best resources and support with other UK portrait photographers. You can learn more about us on the About Us page.
A PHOTOGRAPHER’S LIFE IS…
One minute you’re running out the door to a rescheduled family shoot while the sun’s still shining. The next, you are sitting in a studio that looks like a small tornado has hit it, and you wonder if it’s even possible for a newborn baby to wee on quite that many blankets! A few hours later, and you’re editing like a crazy person so that your client can choose the portrait they want to have framed in time for Mothers Day. In France.
Yes, we get it. That’s our life too – always running. Trying to get stuff done.
We know exactly how frantic it is, when you want to do your best work for clients – and you’re wearing all the hats: marketer, Facebook ads creator, SEO guru, photo editor, accountant – oh, and photographer. And that’s without even mentioning having a personal life.
You’re probably like most UK photographers: decent and hardworking, running a successful portrait business with happy clients.
That can change in a heartbeat.
A client throws a wobbly when they don’t get the raw files. Or they say they had no idea the sitting fee did not include all the files and threatens to trash you on Facebook and Google reviews. Gulp.
That last one – that’s the one we live in fear of, right? Even though we run our businesses with honesty and and integrity, in a few stomach-churning moments, our work lives can be turned upside down. It’s not fair and it’s not right. Even though we might not talk about it – and its easier not to think about it (who wants to tempt fate, right?), it’s still there.
There is an easier way.
Use a contract. We wrote this contract with a UK legal firm, which covers everything we could reasonably think of. It took months of our time and days of expensive lawyer time, so you’re getting a bargain. The contract gives you and your clients clarity. It spells things out in simple language, so everyone is clear up front about all the aspects of working together including those hot buttons of image rights, raw files and what’s included in your sitting fee.
Buy our contract template and adjust it – all you need to do is follow the detailed walk-through so that it fits your business; it takes less than an hour. Then use it. It protects you and it protects your client. Did you know that this is a thing? That a contract cannot be one sided and needs to protect both sides?
Let’s face it – contracts are not glamorous. They are a bit like life insurance – no one wants it really and you are hoping you will never need to actually use it! But if you are running a professional studio, and want your clients to understand how you work, and commit to working with you on YOUR terms – then it’s really worth having one. It encourages best practice, and it means that any misunderstandings can be kept to a minimum – and you can run your business knowing that you have done the best you can to protect you and your family in case any issues arise. So get yourself sorted for 2018, and start the year as you mean to go on!
WHAT OTHERS SAY
In summary, this seems to be just what UK portrait photographers need! I haven’t seen anything out there in the market that offers this.
I found it to be really comprehensive and importantly it has been thought through from the view point of different business models e.g. location vs studio photographers, all inclusive packages vs a la carte sales, IPS vs galleries, newborn sessions vs family portraits etc etc
It covers off some of the very important aspects of regulations that we all need to understand and be compliant with (for example the 14 day calling off period for non face to face purchases and sharing our clients’ data with other suppliers). It is clearly a professional legal document but is also written in plain English so that our clients (and we!) can understand it.
Not only does it deal with lots of the common issues that come up time and time again on photographers’ forums e.g. when to delete client images, not providing RAW files, not showing every image taken, cancellation policies etc etc
but it also acts as a best practice guide for new photographers, setting out all the different things they need to think about in their business work flow and interactions with clients. (I wish I had had access to this when I was starting out!!)
The built-in ability to set your own parameters within the contract means it will meet the needs of most photographers and enable them to follow their own preferred ways of working with clients.
I also love the way it is split to have the summary part and tick boxes up front and then the detailed terms, it makes it really pragmatic when getting the client to sign it online.
Clearly a huge amount of work has gone in to making this a top class resource for photographers. It is much needed and I think it’s brilliant that our industry will have this resource.
I was recently asked by Maria & Sally to be one of the beta testers for the soon to be released Portrait Contract by Harmony & Blue and just wanted to leave some honest feedback here and an insight as to what to expect when you purchase it.
The contract comes with a very straight forward and easy to understand step by step guide as to how to amend certain parts to fit in line with your own business. I even found the language used throughout the main contract easy to understand which was great for me but also great for clients to not feel overwhelmed when presenting them with it as it was not cluttered with too much legal jargon.
I would say that you need to allow approximately 30 mins to complete the initial amendments to be in line with your own business and just to familiarise yourself with the contract and the different sections.
I was impressed at how thorough the contract is, it covered pretty much every scenario of working practise right from bookings to delivery and satisfaction of products. Having read thoroughly through it I also found that all options offered fit well with my personal way of working but also would have worked with many other different methods.
In summary, it is great to finally have a portrait contract available that is in line with UK legislation, well thought out, easy to use and thoroughly covers all steps and scenarios that may be faced. After purchasing and spending just 30 minutes to get it set up, I would say it is well worth the initial outlay and set up time to give you piece of mind that you know that you have a solid contract in place for both you and your clients.
Great job Harmony & Blue.
Harmony & Blue have created a clear, simple set of portrait, commercial and model contracts, which no professional photographer should be without. Transparency for both you as a supplier, and your clients, in incredibly important when running a full-time professional photography business.
Knowing that these documents have been prepared by lawyers and legal professionals for use by professional photographers gives you confidence that everything relevant has been considered and the step by step/walkthroughs make it incredibly simple to implement.
Alongside great insurance, accounting and booking systems, these contracts are a must for running a professional photography business.Nina Mace
Reviewing my client contract has been something that has been on my to-do list for a few years now! I do have a contract that I get clients to sign, but it is one that I have fumbled together using resources online and things that have come up during my 10 years in business. But it’s never been checked over by a solicitor so I’ve never been certain how much of it was actually legally accurate. I once enquired with a lawyer to see how much it would be to put together a contract for me and it was over £1000 so I didn’t go ahead!
I think this template is a fantastic resource and will mean that the family/lifestyle photography industry really steps up it’s game and has a legally approved contract. I hear too many stories in forums of things going wrong for photographers and this contract means that the client and the photographer are protected.
Thank you, I can now rest easy that I have a legally viable contract and that both my clients and myself are fully protected and on the right side of the law!Vicki Knights
As soon as I saw the advert for the Harmony and Blue Photographers Contract Template, I knew I would have to buy it. Although I have a Terms of Business in place for my Photography Business, I wasn’t sure how legally sound it was so it was a relief to have something written for me that was current and approved by a legal professional. I photograph a number of genre’s and feel that this contract can be tweaked to suit each genre making it even more efficient and value for money.
I’m very happy I purchased this and highly recommend you do the same.Alison McKenny
I had been procrastinating about updating my client contract for years. Over time, new rules regarding client privacy and consumer rights had made my old legal paperwork practically obsolete, and I knew that sooner or later I had to make some significant changes to it, but I wasn’t sure how. Unfortunately, what little was available online or through my photographers’ associations was either US-centric, or quite generic and not applicable to many aspects of my business.
So I was very pleased to see the launch of these UK/EU law-based, portrait-specific legal contracts. Definitely something that had been missing from the photography business template market.
I took the plunge and bought these, hoping that they would be suitable for my needs and I was not disappointed! The walkthrough provided is very clear, helpful and easy to follow.
The contract itself is written in plain English and easy for a client to read and understand. I appreciated that so many different scenarios were covered, leaving no room for ambiguity. With the help of the walkthrough, It took me approximately an hour to review the contract and make all the changes necessary.
I have just implemented my new contract for all new bookings. Not only do I feel that my business now comes across far more professionally, but I am also far more knowledgeable about my clients’ legal rights (and my own) than I used to!
Having looked through the contract, both the actual form and notes and the t’s and c’s. They are incredibly comprehensive and user adjustable (for the relevant sections) that I cannot see where a photographer could not personalise it to suit their individual needs. Took me about 20 mins to adapt it to suit myself and my work and was so easy to do.
Most importantly it fits the guidelines on fairness that the Office of Fair Trading would insist on. A truly fantastic product that I would be more that happy to recommend to any trainee or photographer seeking advice.
Well done on a quality product!GARY HILL