(Closed) What should I look for in my photography contract?

posted 5 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 3
851 posts
Busy bee

@kellybeans14:  Mine doesn’t have it in the contract, but I’ve met with him and know he carries it with him. The only thing I would add (as you’ve previously mentioned) is a turn around time.

Post # 4
1651 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

@kellybeans14:  Hey, I used to be a professional photog. here are my 2 cents:


– No need to list professional equipment. What if their equipment changes and upgrades? I think if you believe the photog is experienced and an all around trustworthy person, this is not something I’ve seen in photography contracts


– No need to outline the style in the contract. Rather, your contract shoudl stipulate that you and your photographer are going to get together prior to the wedding for a final walkthrough consultation. This is where you guys would discuss what is most important to you, a list of family members you definitely want captured, etc. 


– Acceptable substitute – most photographers won’t know until the last minute who this sub might be exctly. However, I think it is reasonable for your photographer to outline a general game plan for what happens in the event that they can’t make it to your wedding. For example, in mine, it says that the assistant will still go and that I will make every best effort to send a photog of similar caliber and style. And that I would still be the one editing the photos after the wedding


– Your photographer should be bringing back-up equipment regardless. This is again not something I have seen written into a contract, but I think it’s reasonable for you to know what happens if no photos ever appear as a result of massive failure. 


– I think it is very reasonable to include an approximate turnaround time

Post # 6
343 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2016 - Presidio Log Cabin

I’m a photographer, and I agree with others that the list of equipment is not needed (nor would it be possible to track it, unless you wanted to go through their camera bag at the start of the day)!

A couple other things to consider in addition to turnaround time would be:

  • An agreement on the vendor meal, if you’re providing one. I like to have this in my contracts so that it’s clear that I will need a break and a meal (as well as one for an assistant, if applicable for that specific wedding).
  • A statement on how the photos will be delivered to you (USB? DVD? Online gallery only?)

Post # 7
1411 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

Unless you’re comfortable paying your photographer for each and every print you ever want, I would make sure that the contract says you have full usage and printing rights.

ETA: Well not necessarily full usage, our contract says that we can’t post images without a watermark online like on Facebook, but since apparently this is because otherwise Facebook may try to say they own the copyright, I consider this to be very reasonable.

Post # 8
562 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

@kellybeans14:  Look for a clause that deals with illness. What happens if (knock on wood) your photographer falls and breaks his/her neck the day before your wedding? Will they send someone else? If not, do you get your money back? This is so unlikely to happen, but you need to know just in case.

I’d also look for a time limit. Will they be there for an unlimited amount of time, or does the contract include up to 7 hours, 8 hours, 9 hours of time? A lot of photographers will include a certain number of hours and then charge you per hour beyond that. If your photographer does have a time limit, make sure they get there at the right time when you’re getting ready so they can get a few pictures of that (if you want), but don’t ask them to arrive so early that their 7-hour (or whatever) limit is up before you have your first dance or any other things you want pictures of. 

Post # 10
5660 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

This I totally don’t undrestand, who cares lol

  • List of specific equipment to be used

I think someone else said this but I’d make sure that you how how yo uare getting the photo’s, and at what resolution. I wanted mine in a resolution printable up to 8×10 so I could print my own, many seem to only do up to 4×6, and some won’t even give you the rights to the photo’s. I wanted all of my photo’s in digital form and printable.

Post # 11
35 posts

Okay, equipment- no. Its not in my contract and it never will be. Unless you are a photographer or hobbiest, you don’t know what a canon 580XE II is, do you?  Unless you google it.  So That really doesn’t matter.

What I HAD to have in mine is:

1. what happens if I can’t make it

2. turn around time

3. and obviously look to make sure everything you agreed to is THERE.  everything you want.


I have different contracts for the packages and offer a custom option at which point I have a contract template I copy pasta into and match the custom package- so mine is always pretty detailed to the event at hand.  Not that I change my rules every time, its basically the same, the details of the wedding is different.

Post # 12
850 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013


Here are a few things: service start and end time, cost of additional time per hour (or 30 min) if needed, whether or not the photographer holds the rights in that he can use photos of you on his website or in print materials, whether or not you will be allowed to manipulate/edit the photos yourself or if the photog is the only one who can edit them.

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