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Contracts, Copyright and Costings Advice Needed

Discussion in 'General Forum' started by Catt, Jul 21, 2007.

  1. Catt

    Catt New Member


    I would really appreciate any advice you can give me.

    I'm about to start a one-off freelance job to design some CD artwork for a band. I want to find out whether there are any sample/template contracts I can use as reference...i want to make sure i cover everything. Also, how do i best protect my work? If, for example, later on the band decide they would like to use the artwork for merchandise (i want to retain the copyright for all my work) how do I follow this through? Also, any advice on costings for the CD artwork and any subsequent uses for it would be most gratefully received!

    Many thanks
  2. Rizzo

    Rizzo New Member

    Hi Catt

    Some general tips on contracts here Contracts and schedules :: Freelance UK

    You need to state very clearly in your contract with them that copyright of your design will remain with you if that's what you're agreeing. You can then negotiate a fee for that design to be used elsewhere in the future.
  3. Catt

    Catt New Member

    Thank you very much for that.

    I have since had a conversation regarding what they would actually like me to do for them and it involves...

    - a band logo
    - CD front cover/insert/back cover artwork and
    - artwork for t-shirts
    - using copies of the above on their website

    Is there any advice you or anyone can give me regarding how I should charge for this work and work this into the contract without shooting myself in the foot! The added pressure is that the album is to be released in 3 weeks.

    Many thanks again...
  4. Rizzo

    Rizzo New Member

    Sounds like a fab fun job and a great portfolio piece :happy

    Most of the designers I've worked with charge a fee for coming up with 2-3 design concepts, so visuals to present to them. Then a fee for finalizing the chosen route to finished artwork and then a fee for each application - so applying that to CD covers then again to t-shirts etc.

    Make sure you know what format they need the final artwork in so you both know what you're sending and how. Before that also make sure you give yourself enough time to dream up the concepts in the first place. When you present the concepts get a clear brief of how you're to finalise the artwork - you might want to put in the contract that you allow x hours for each stage and that any 'author's corrections' are charged at £x per hour. So if they keep asking for minor changes & tweaks (as clients do if they think it's free!) you can charge - this is the sort of thing that eats into your profitability and you need to keep tabs on IMHO.

    Some designers issue an 'artwork release' form which each application that states you give the client permission to reproduce the artwork for the purpose of producing CD covers but copyright of the design remains yours. This is just back up I would imagine as it should be in the initial contract - make you you get them to sign this contract too! good luck!
  5. Catt

    Catt New Member

    You are a star! Thank you so much for your advice I really appreciate it.

    'Most of the designers I've worked with charge a fee for coming up with 2-3 design concepts, so visuals to present to them. Then a fee for finalizing the chosen route to finished artwork and then a fee for each application - so applying that to CD covers then again to t-shirts etc.'

    Regarding the above, are you able to give me a guideline 'fee' for each of these as an example? I really have no idea, I don't want to charge too much but i don't want to sell myself short. What is your advice regarding the band logo since obviously this will be used on absolutely everything as its their identity? So sorry to throw so many questions at you...thank you so much for your time.
  6. Rizzo

    Rizzo New Member

    Happy to help where I can :)

    Do a quick search on this forum re: rates, but I did find this thread which is quite useful on graphic design rates: http://forums.freelanceuk.com/graph...w-graphic-designer-rates.html?highlight=rates

    I think if you're a newbie then start reasonable and up as they say - somewhere in there is £16-22p.h. which sounds reasonable if you're building your folio.

    So how long do you think it will take you to come up with 2 concept ideas for the actual logo? 2 days? If so then your concept fee is £256 (assuming you work an 8 hour day). I forget to mention building a bit extra into your quote to cover expenses too - ink cartridges/paper for the proofs, any special delivery postage for proofs or whatever.

    And work out same again for each application, make sure you know exactly what/how/where you're applying the logo though - is the tshirt front and back? Obviously both sides will take more of your time to artwork than just on the front.

    Good thing about breaking the quote down into each area is if the client wants changes, it makes it all transparent, so you can say "well as you can see I allocated 6 hours to apply the design to the t-shirt, these changes to your original brief will now take me over that so if you still want me to go ahead it will add £x to the bill".

    There is loads of this sort of stuff on the main site so I suggest a good read up of Starting Out, Running your business and the design market sector area for more tips.

    Let us know how you get on!
  7. Catt

    Catt New Member

    Me again!

    Thank you again for your advice. Sorry to keep going on but...

    The band have asked me to find and deal with a printer for the run of all the pieces and they have indicated that they require 100 t-shirts, 500 each of CD covers/inserts, business cards and postcards and a logo design. Should I write in the contract that the reproduction rights of each design is restricted to the quantity indicated and any further runs will need my permission and incur a fee or % royalty? Or do I just quote them for the whole job and leave it at that? Also, since i'm dealing with the printers do I still need to hand over the designs to the band?

    Thanks again! I really appreciate all this
  8. Rizzo

    Rizzo New Member

    Still think you should clearly state that copyright of any component of the job (logo/cd cover design) remains with you, with future reproduction of that
    logo requiring permission and a reproduction fee on the contract to be crystal clear. As you won't be handing over an artwork cd at the end of the job they can't use the logo without going through you first, but it's best to be up front that you won't just hand over the design if they want to use it elsewhere themselves later.(So long as your fees are reasonable and you're up front then they're likely to hire you for any such work anyway.)

    As you're dealing with the printer, get all proofs signed off by the client!

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