Quote Originally Posted by zemzem
Does anyone out there have a good generic model release they use for portrait and/or general photography?

I'm planning on doing a series of portraits, but they will be done gratis and used to expand my portfolio. The subjects will all get one polaroid and an 8X10 print, but I will retain the negatives and rights to use/sell the prints, scans etc. I'm OK with the subjects scanning the print or polaroid for personal use.

After years of working in the Motion Picture and Television business I have some model releases used for those productions, but I was wondering if there was anything specific for still photography? Thanks.
There are a couple of legal concerns for model release, but the most important thing is that the photographer, the model and all involved parties agree with the reasonable condition and all specifics are written out in unambiguous language. There are other technicalities you can learn from legal resources, and by reading well written release forms. Especially for TFP/TFCD type work, you should explicitly list what the model gets within how many days, etc. and also list what kind of rights that the photographer retains. On many forms you'll see a phrase "valuable consideration" and cash of $5 or $1 or whatever, but it no longer has to be "valuable" (money) in many states to make a valid contract. But you should list up actual items that are being considered in the agreement.

I don't know if there's something special about still v. motion, but my experience is that release for TFP type work with amateur models may require a slightly different approach. A thorough lengthy release form may give better protection for you, but at the same time, the model may get nervous when signing it, especially with amateur models for TFP. I usually keep a short one and a long one. Rather than being open to modify your release to accomodate the model's concern, it's best to have a reasonable form and stick with it. One very clear thing is that a short release is much better than no written release.