What does having a watermark and copyright on photos mean for my wedding photos?

Hi there a photographer is an expensive part of our wedding day, and I have heard of some horror stories of couples having watermarks on their photos and having to pay extra to use their photos so after the day (i.e. to print and put on the wall or share to personal socials? Is that normal or expected i am a bit scared of all photographers and the legal stuff! Thanks Bree

Question Asked: 19/12/2023

Wedding Date: 9/08/2018

Most Helpful Response

Catherine Nemanic Studios

(0) · Sydney and surrounding areas

Posted: 20/12/2023

Hi Bree,

Thank you for reaching out and expressing your concerns. I completely understand your worries about watermarks and additional fees for using the photos after your wedding day. As a photographer, I believe in providing my clients with the best possible experience and ensuring that they can fully enjoy and utilize their photos without any extra costs.

I do not put any watermarks on the photos I deliver to my clients. I believe that it is important for you to have the freedom to print, share, and display your photos as you wish, without any limitations. Once I deliver the final edited images to you, they are yours to use and enjoy without any additional charges.

I strive to make the entire process as transparent and stress-free as possible. If you have any further questions or concerns about the legal aspects or any other aspect of my photography services, please feel free to ask. I am here to help and ensure that you have a wonderful experience on your wedding day.



Answered by: 4 Experts

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Whately Photography

(8) · Australia & New Zealand - Based in Perth / Margaret River

Posted: 20/12/2023

Hi Bree, each photographer is different, and it's best to have that conversation with the photographer you choose.

Ideally you should receive unwatermarked files, but copyright is almost always owned by the artist/photographer. 

My contracts assign copyright to me, but grants unlimited personal use to my couples, which means they're free to print, share, etc. as much as they like so long as it's considered "personal use", but they wouldn't be able to sell the images or use for commercial purposes without additional licence. I feel this is fairly standard for most reputable photographers in Australia.

Beau @ Whately Photography

Reel Imagination Photo

(18) · All Sydney, Hunter Valley, North/South Coast, Southern Highlands

Posted: 20/12/2023

Hi Bree, good question. Mostly all photographers will have a standard contract which states the usage and rights of both the couple and photographer of the photos after the wedding. Some photographers are stricter than others and will negotiate the usage. 

Generally speaking, honest photographers will let you do anything you want with the images such as share and print, but they won't let you sell them for profit as they feel they're entitled to some of the revenue associated with the sale. It basically comes down to copyright of the images, most photographers will try to retain copyright so they can advertise their business and submit the photos in competitions, again for advertisement. 

Hopefully this helps and happy to answer any other questions you have :)

Dane @ Reel Imagination Photo

Perla Photography

(63) · Mornington Peninsula ; Yarra Valley ; Dandenongs ; Daylesford

Posted: 20/12/2023

Hi, it means the photographer will put their logo or branding on each image. Personally I deliver images without watermark or any type of brnding so the couple can use them as they please. Hope this helps!

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