After looking at the original post again I think Neil should make the prints for his portfolio , he has already made the prints for his friend, and now I see no reason to keep the negatives.
Les Mclean photographed my wedding this summer and he gave me the negatives and the photoshoot as a gift , I think this is the same as Neil and his friend.
Just a simple friendly transaction.
it took me along time to get to the end of this thread....it was fun reading. photographers feel connected to their negs.....bottom line!
i just shot my very good friends wedding on sept 29th (right while this conversation was happening). it is my last wedding. too much stress. all my other weddings (4) i did at cost and i gave the negs up. i do not need or want them.
back to the 29th. i told my frind he could have the film, scans and CDs. i shot 35mm, 120 and 8x10. i asked him if i could keep the 8x10 negs as i wanted to use them for my portfolio and to make some prints. i told him i would scan them for him. i also made him 2 prints from the negs that i delivered on sunday at noon (the next day! see my gallery for my crappy scans of said images)
this is the best part of the story!
they said they would pay me what ever it cost to make what ever they wanted later. they said i could keep the 8x10 negs! they said i did an excellent job! they were very happy with the results so far (i am still waiting on some scans) AND they said if i need more money just tell them! NOW THOSE ARE FRIENDS!
i am happy to have helped them. i am happy everything is in focus! i am happy they love my wedding present (shooting the wedding and my wet print 8x10 contact prints (you guys should have seen everyones faces the next day at brunch when i, the analog shooter, showed up with prints!). i am happy the flash exposures are good! i am happy these people are my friends! i am happy they are happy! i am happy that that was my last wedding!!!!
What a sticky situation. You could say, "I agreed to photography the cost of the film, process and printing at cost to you. Not that you own the negatives." Years ago when I did weddings I charged an hourly fee and for each roll that included processing and proofs in a album for $25." (Now I would charge $75 per roll) The reason I charge $25 per roll was I kept getting request for more pictures to be taken. The bride and groom knew this before hand. They didn't get the negatives. Keep the negatives you own them even if they brought the film.