Having photos taken of me for various brochures, websites and the like, I simply did not bother asking for copies of them. In fact, I have never seen a copy of a photo taken of me for commercial work, ever. A friend of my mother’s saw me in a Dell brochure but did not think to save it. That was my closest shot to getting one. When you’re on set, people are busy and you’re just the talent.
At my last print gig, I decided to change this unfortunate reality. I asked the producer, the client, and finally got a Yes from the photographer, who told me to email the producer in a few months. I did so, and she sent me a note in which she wrote, “The client ‘owns’ all the pictures. It often happens that the work a model does is never seen…Yes, it was great fun to take the pictures. I can’t guarantee any pics for a portfolio-part of the job.”
It was as if the shoot was done for fun, and I have no right to ever see the work produced from my efforts. Sure, the photographer gets to use a few for his portfolio. Fashion models get copies because they know their photo will appear in the February issue of Elle. Why can’t commercial models simply be given a copy, once in a while, without fuss? Because we are the chopped liver of the industry.
by Dame Suzy, aka Chopped Liver