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Forums > Model Colloquy > The Good, the Bad, & the Horrible Watermarks Search   Reply
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Model
Bella Li asianbella
Posts: 24
Alexandria, Virginia, US


Has anyone else turned down or passed up a photographer because their watermark was too obnoxious?

I've seen some very good watermarks which blend into the photo.
Some are the average. You can see them they don't really go with the photo but don't necessarily clash either.
Then there's the ones that make me cringe, those crazy coloured, take up 1/4 of the photo watermarks.
Dec 08 12 08:36 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Laura UnBound
Posts: 27,365
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Yep.

A good image doesnt help me at all if nobody can actually see the damn thing behind your ego ejaculate all over the middle of the photo.

I totally get watermarking and theft-deterrent, branding and whatnot, but there are such better ways to go about it all than slapping GIANT TEXT through the middle of the image



I also cant stand ugly watermarks. If it looks like a teenager made it, No.
Dec 08 12 08:44 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
name removed3
Posts: 264
Boston, Massachusetts, US


I agree that some watermarks are crap.


who is stealing your intellectual property that you need your name all over it.

your shit isn't hold and people aren't stealing your awful pics of some girl in a bikini on a hood of your Hyundai.
Dec 08 12 08:53 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
pullins photography
Posts: 5,878
Troy, Michigan, US


asianbella wrote:
Has anyone else turned down or passed up a photographer because their watermark was too obnoxious?

I've seen some very good watermarks which blend into the photo.
Some are the average. You can see them they don't really go with the photo but don't necessarily clash either.
Then there's the ones that make me cringe, those crazy coloured, take up 1/4 of the photo watermarks.

You know what? It's the internet, and everyone should protect themselves as much as possible. If you need photos to show agencies, then unwatermarked makes sense. However, if you're basing your desire to work with someone based upon where he/she places a watermark, reconsider what you're giving up. No one wants to see his/her photo, or whatever, end up somewhere it shouldn't, and the only way to discourage that, is to make it unusable to the masses.

Dec 08 12 08:53 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Graham Glover
Posts: 1,260
Oakton, Virginia, US


I put my logo in the lower left corner of my photos, one that is visible regardless of the image.  It's small enough to be essentially just a signature.  Yes I want to protect my Intellectual Property.  I also want my photos to be viewed and enjoyed.

I'll turn the question around and answer accordingly.  If I'm looking at a model and her photos have an unfortunate bunch of garbage over the middle of the image, I won't bother looking.  Translated:  If you're a model and your photographer has given you unusable photos, I'll react in kind:

"Next..."

I want to make money with my photography.  Yes I want to protect my work, but I also want to work.  I'd prefer to be in the enviable position of someone wanting to use my images, rather than making something no one wants to see.
Dec 08 12 11:01 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Nadia ModelTx
Posts: 379
Houston, Texas, US


Laura UnBound wrote:
" behind your ego ejaculate all over the middle of the photo. "

bahahha smile

Dec 08 12 11:06 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Cole Morrison
Posts: 3,958
Portland, Oregon, US


i absolutely will not with with someone who is going to watermark obnoxiously across a photo
i consider "obnoxious" anything more than a name or symbol in the corner
Dec 08 12 11:10 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Rob Photosby
Posts: 2,915
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia


After being ripped of by a model, I now accept watermarks as a necessary evil, but I try very hard to place them so that they are confined to the background and do not touch the model.
Dec 09 12 12:15 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
4 R D
Posts: 1,049
Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico


there is no such thing as a "good" watermark
Dec 09 12 08:00 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Lorayne York
Posts: 2,120
Wichita, Kansas, US


asianbella wrote:
Has anyone else turned down or passed up a photographer because their watermark was too obnoxious?

I've seen some very good watermarks which blend into the photo.
Some are the average. You can see them they don't really go with the photo but don't necessarily clash either.
Then there's the ones that make me cringe, those crazy coloured, take up 1/4 of the photo watermarks.

i havent turned down any photographer because of their watermark. if it's obnoxious i just send them my rates. cause obviously the photos will be useless to me. or you can always ask them to remove the watermark for prints.

Dec 09 12 08:04 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
BodyIndustry
Posts: 269
Washington, District of Columbia, US


Laura UnBound wrote:
Yep.

A good image doesnt help me at all if nobody can actually see the damn thing behind your ego ejaculate all over the middle of the photo..............

LOL!!, you to funny

Dec 09 12 08:08 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
RKD Photographic
Posts: 3,265
Iserlohn, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany


natural beauties of qld wrote:
After being ripped of by a model, I now accept watermarks as a necessary evil, but I try very hard to place them so that they are confined to the background and do not touch the model.

Too easy to remove if the purpose of the WM is theft prevention - for 'branding' purposes that's OK, but I prefer to kill two birds with one stone, so to speak.
A watermark is visual assertation of your ownership of the image - no-one can claim they 'didn't know', as they can with EXIF data copyright solutions (as not everyone can access that info).

I also offer unwatermarked images to models who need prints for their books, but all images appearing online get watermarked.

Dec 09 12 08:16 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
EdwardKristopher
Posts: 3,377
Tempe, Arizona, US


:-)
Dec 09 12 08:21 am  Link  Quote 
guide forum
Model
Koryn
Posts: 36,615
Boston, Massachusetts, US


No, but I've definitely gotten back photos that I decided not to use, because the watermark was so huge, it marred the overall effect of the image.
Dec 09 12 08:24 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Acanthus Tattoos
Posts: 429
Union, New Jersey, US


Kudos to photographer I shot with for inoffensive teeny tiny watermark

http://www.modelmayhem.com/portfolio/pic/30723028
Dec 09 12 09:25 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Dan K Photography
Posts: 5,466
STATEN ISLAND, New York, US


Acanthus Tattoos wrote:
Kudos to photographer I shot with for inoffensive teeny tiny watermark

http://www.modelmayhem.com/portfolio/pic/30723028

My eye is drawn to the watermark way before anything else in the photo.

Dec 09 12 09:29 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Julia Francesca
Posts: 2,357
Maumee, Ohio, US


Laura UnBound wrote:
ego ejaculate

this is the best thing ever.

Dec 09 12 09:37 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Charger Photography
Posts: 1,720
San Antonio, Texas, US


Dan K Photography wrote:

My eye is drawn to the watermark way before anything else in the photo.

+100

Dec 09 12 09:37 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Julia Francesca
Posts: 2,357
Maumee, Ohio, US


i like a little tasteful watermark in one of the corners, that's not bad, but i'd never tf with someone if they did some gigantic gross thing right across my bod/face, wtf, not worth it!!!
Dec 09 12 09:38 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
DAN CRUIKSHANK
Posts: 1,786
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada


Dan K Photography wrote:

My eye is drawn to the watermark way before anything else in the photo.

Sounds like an effective branding tool to me smile There are places where watermarks are acceptable IMO, such as MM ports, and FB profiles. Images on social media can potentially be seen by thousands and thousands of people; it's smart marketing for a photographer to put their name or website on each image that goes on these sites, after all, these sites aren't considered 'professional portfolios' by any means. When it comes to print portfolios and websites then watermarks are bad, very bad.

With that being said, huge obstructive watermarks do look tacky and I understand why models are turned off by them. They shouldn't cover the subject matter.

Dec 09 12 09:48 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Dan K Photography
Posts: 5,466
STATEN ISLAND, New York, US


DAN CRUIKSHANK wrote:

Sounds like an effective branding tool to me smile There are places where watermarks are acceptable IMO, such as MM ports, and FB profiles. Images on social media can potentially be seen by thousands and thousands of people; it's smart marketing for a photographer to put their name or website on each image that goes on these sites, after all, these sites aren't considered 'professional portfolios' by any means. When it comes to print portfolios and websites then watermarks are bad, very bad.

With that being said, huge obstructive watermarks do look tacky and I understand why models are turned off by them. They shouldn't cover the subject matter.

I disagree that a watermark is acceptable in a model's portfolio on MM. Her portfolio is to market herself not your photography. Unless you are watermarking the whole team it should be kept off.

Dec 09 12 09:59 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Lanna_
Posts: 829
Seattle, Washington, US


I don't mind the watermark.  Here's why:

If I am TF shooting with someone, I express that I will require NON watermarked images at a resolution that can print at 9x12 for my agency book.  (Otherwise I'm not getting anything worthwhile out of the deal.  Any text that goes onto an image in my book should be from a tearsheet.  Not a watermark.  Just look at any decent agency's model books and you'll see this to be true.)

I will also say that I'm perfectly happy to use watermarked images for MM/internet usage.  I will only used the non-watermared to send to my agency and possibly print.

I feel this is a reasonable request (why work for something you can't use?) and have had no issues with it so far. 

It's also written in my profile so it's no secret what I'm looking for.
Dec 09 12 10:01 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Daeda1us
Posts: 1,067
Little Rock, Arkansas, US


There are pictures on MM which I shot and provided to the models without water mark.
The models are under contract to give credit to me and the rest of the team.

Did I get credit in all of them as the photographer?

Nope.

And this is the reason photographers use water marks.

My two cents, YMMV
Daeda1us
Dec 09 12 10:13 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Rakesh Malik
Posts: 357
Seattle, Washington, US


Lanna_ wrote:
I don't mind the watermark.  Here's why:

If I am TF shooting with someone, I express that I will require NON watermarked images at a resolution that can print at 9x12 for my agency book.  (Otherwise I'm not getting anything worthwhile out of the deal.  Any text that goes onto an image in my book should be from a tearsheet.  Not a watermark.  Just look at any decent agency's model books and you'll see this to be true.)

I will also say that I'm perfectly happy to use watermarked images for MM/internet usage.  I will only used the non-watermared to send to my agency and possibly print.

I feel this is a reasonable request (why work for something you can't use?) and have had no issues with it so far. 

It's also written in my profile so it's no secret what I'm looking for.

That's entirely reasonable... It's how my galleries are set up; the images online have watermarks, and I've tried to make mine unobtrusive. The prints are back printed, and the watermark isn't included on the front. I think downloads are watermark free also, which I make available to the model free for a tf shoot. If you embed or link to an image in my gallery, it will show the watermark.

Dec 09 12 10:16 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Dan K Photography
Posts: 5,466
STATEN ISLAND, New York, US


Daeda1us wrote:
There are pictures on MM which I shot and provided to the models without water mark.
The models are under contract to give credit to me and the rest of the team.

Did I get credit in all of them as the photographer?

Nope.

And this is the reason photographers use water marks.

My two cents, YMMV
Daeda1us

Many photographers do not give credit to the models what should they do?

Dec 09 12 10:40 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Daeda1us
Posts: 1,067
Little Rock, Arkansas, US


Dan K Photography wrote:

Many photographers do not give credit to the models what should they do?

They should give credit, unless there is a specific reason they did not give credit.  If they forgot, then they should be reminded, then the photographer should give credit.

When I TF, I always tell them I will be including their photos in my portfolio.  Otherwise I charge for the session.
Some people want their name associated with my work.
Others do not.

I bow to their request either way.

Seeing my work uncredited is nudging me toward always using watermarks, to bring the response back to the subject.

My two cents, YMMV
Daeda1us

Dec 09 12 10:52 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
annie lomowitz
Posts: 257
WOODY CREEK, Colorado, US


Yikes.
or: do you skip that blouse because of the logo?
---

I, for one, don't 'stamp' the model or the client's work. Frankly, if an art director skipped a photo because of the SY, then they have a poor eye. Guess that goes for anyone else.

I, judging a models b/look, don't stop at the photographer's work.


annie. very familiar with reading books without covers; concepts still in the tissue state.
Dec 09 12 11:12 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Jojo West
Posts: 972
Silver Spring, Maryland, US


asianbella wrote:
Has anyone else turned down or passed up a photographer because their watermark was too obnoxious?

I've seen some very good watermarks which blend into the photo.
Some are the average. You can see them they don't really go with the photo but don't necessarily clash either.
Then there's the ones that make me cringe, those crazy coloured, take up 1/4 of the photo watermarks.

Yup. I've passed on many because of their gaudy HUGE watermarks. Sorry I'm not posting an image on my port that was ruined because the photographer likes to put his giant colored watermark DIAGONALLY across an image. It should be large enough to be noticed but in a location that doesn't interfere with the image. You're selling the image, not the watermark.

Dec 09 12 10:46 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Alabaster Crowley
Posts: 8,264
Tucson, Arizona, US


I like logos more than regular watermarks. A small image or stylized initials is a lot nicer than "ENTIRE NAME IN SHITTY FONT". The key here is small and not shitty.
Dec 10 12 12:38 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Rakesh Malik
Posts: 357
Seattle, Washington, US


Jojo West wrote:
Yup. I've passed on many because of their gaudy HUGE watermarks. Sorry I'm not posting an image on my port that was ruined because the photographer likes to put his giant colored watermark DIAGONALLY across an image. It should be large enough to be noticed but in a location that doesn't interfere with the image. You're selling the image, not the watermark.

Photoshelter ran a survey for photo editors and buyers once, they said the same thing. They passed up on entire portfolios of work because of obtrusive watermarks. That was why I designed a watermark based on my logo, made it small, a bit more than 50% transparent, and off in one corner.

Dec 10 12 03:13 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
GM Photography
Posts: 6,095
Olympia, Washington, US


It's nice to see the model's side of this topic.  It gets done to death in the photographer's forum, but I've always wondered how models perceive the "value" of watermarks/logos.  Every once in a while a model will ask me to put my logo on their images. Since I don't have one, I politely decline.  Which isn't to say that I never put a copyright notice on my images, I sometimes do, but not on my creative work.
Dec 10 12 05:01 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
GM Photography
Posts: 6,095
Olympia, Washington, US


pullins photography wrote:
You know what? It's the internet, and everyone should protect themselves as much as possible. If you need photos to show agencies, then unwatermarked makes sense. However, if you're basing your desire to work with someone based upon where he/she places a watermark, reconsider what you're giving up. No one wants to see his/her photo, or whatever, end up somewhere it shouldn't, and the only way to discourage that, is to make it unusable to the masses.

Yep, that'll stop those dirty photo thieves.  Good luck with that. 

How are they "giving up" something if the photographer is providing images that are unusable because of a ginormous watermark?  The whole idea of a trade shoot is for both parties to get something of equal value.  Otherwise, someone should be paying someone.

Dec 10 12 05:03 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Cherrystone
Posts: 36,643
Columbus, Ohio, US


Daeda1us wrote:
There are pictures on MM which I shot and provided to the models without water mark.
The models are under contract to give credit to me and the rest of the team.

Did I get credit in all of them as the photographer?

Nope.

And this is the reason photographers use water marks.

My two cents, YMMV
Daeda1us

Dan K Photography wrote:
Many photographers do not give credit to the models what should they do?

Cough....

Dec 10 12 05:09 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Cherrystone
Posts: 36,643
Columbus, Ohio, US


Laura UnBound wrote:
behind your ego ejaculate all over the middle of the photo.

I love you right now....AND I'm gonna use that forever. big_smile

Dec 10 12 05:10 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
DOUGLASFOTOS
Posts: 8,420
Los Angeles, California, US


asianbella wrote:
Has anyone else turned down or passed up a photographer because their watermark was too obnoxious?

I've seen some very good watermarks which blend into the photo.
Some are the average. You can see them they don't really go with the photo but don't necessarily clash either.
Then there's the ones that make me cringe, those crazy coloured, take up 1/4 of the photo watermarks.

What? I see no Problem with a few watermarks!!! lol

http://i1001.photobucket.com/albums/af133/cirtapfotos/_DSC2024.jpg

Dec 10 12 05:14 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
DOUGLASFOTOS
Posts: 8,420
Los Angeles, California, US


asianbella wrote:
Has anyone else turned down or passed up a photographer because their watermark was too obnoxious?

I've seen some very good watermarks which blend into the photo.
Some are the average. You can see them they don't really go with the photo but don't necessarily clash either.
Then there's the ones that make me cringe, those crazy coloured, take up 1/4 of the photo watermarks.

dp

Dec 10 12 05:14 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Lily Darling
Posts: 1,299
Lansing, Michigan, US


I don't mind water marks, that being said the huge obnoxious ones I have seen... No. I won't shoot with a photog that covers up the whole subject matter with their logo. There would be no point in me shooting with a photog that covers up my body and face with their name. I have to advertise myself to ya know?
Dec 10 12 05:17 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Laurence Moan
Posts: 7,759
Huntington Beach, California, US


I don't watermark my images. I tattoo them.
Dec 10 12 05:20 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
robert b mitchell
Posts: 1,418
Surrey, British Columbia, Canada


I don't bother with watermarks. Period....
Dec 10 12 05:29 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Bunny Bombshell
Posts: 11,752
Huntington, West Virginia, US


Yep, definitely an all-time pet peeve. They should be practically invisible, not to mention some image thieves are crafty enough to where they can remove a logo so what's the point? If you see someone using an image you took, just sue them. It's that simple
Dec 11 12 10:46 am  Link  Quote 
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