Welcome to the MacNN Forums.

If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above. You may have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed. To start viewing messages, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.

You are here: MacNN Forums > Enthusiast Zone > Art & Graphic Design > Client asks for PSD file.

Client asks for PSD file.
Thread Tools
iomatic
Mac Elite
Join Date: Oct 1999
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 19, 2006, 12:12 PM
 
Well, they didn't ask for the PSD file, but something they 'can edit'. The HTML for the landing page is already done; they still haven't made clear which they need; it's for their partners (whom they've cc'd).

It's a time constraint, so I've already sent the files (HTML and PSD). What would you have done; they are a very big client, supplying half my income (sometimes more, depending)? How would you go about approaching this with the client later?

In the email, I basically say they can pay me if they need help (in a nice way).
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 19, 2006, 12:41 PM
 
That's a problem many people, and agencies, eventually face.

Unfortunately, we don't have the same protections as photographers when it comes to owning our work. The best thing you can do is learn from the lesson and make an effort to spread your risk out over more clients. That way, if you do get a deadbeat, you can always walk away without jeopardizing your financial stability.

Here in Minneapolis, many design shops are beholden to Target and Best Buy -- two companies known for abusing their 'partners.' It's a challenge for the community.
     
iomatic  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Oct 1999
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 19, 2006, 01:24 PM
 
I think we have the same protections; we just haven't as a group, made it clear, nor enforced these rights and policies. Negatives have always been easily understood, just as digital files have not been (oh, it must be easy!)

Starting my second career in photography (again, originally trained), I see lots of photographers who get asked for RAW files, and since it's such a murky ground for them now, they're coming to the same conundrum. Lots will say to their credit, "they're my negatives", or better, "you can pay for them". That's really the right approach; having a contractual obligation that's clearly communicated. That's always tricky though, when signing on a new client, to have to deal with stuff like that up front; when they're sitting in their cubicle, all they want is the job done on time and up to quality standards.
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 19, 2006, 01:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by iomatic View Post
I think we have the same protections; we just haven't as a group, made it clear, nor enforced these rights and policies. Negatives have always been easily understood, just as digital files have not been (oh, it must be easy!)
No, actually we don't.
     
Photo678
Dedicated MacNNer
Join Date: Dec 2003
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 19, 2006, 02:04 PM
 
Originally Posted by iomatic View Post
Well, they didn't ask for the PSD file, but something they 'can edit'. The HTML for the landing page is already done; they still haven't made clear which they need; it's for their partners (whom they've cc'd).

It's a time constraint, so I've already sent the files (HTML and PSD). What would you have done; they are a very big client, supplying half my income (sometimes more, depending)? How would you go about approaching this with the client later?

In the email, I basically say they can pay me if they need help (in a nice way).


For a regular client like that, I probably would of turned over the psd's as well. Alot of times I do things for clients that are date specific, and sometimes they want and editable file so they can change dates or whatever....instead of having me open it up, spend 3 minutes changing a line of text and sending it to them. It's easier to have them have it, as I know they will use me for the design work, and probably wont be giving out the psd to someone else to use for another project.

You made the right decision
     
Demonhood
Administrator
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Land of the Easily Amused
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 19, 2006, 02:28 PM
 
we had a pretty long thread on this last year. just for reference.
     
iomatic  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Oct 1999
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 19, 2006, 02:40 PM
 
Demonhood-- yeah, I remember that. But my question was more about, OK, I've handed this stuff to them, now I need to clarify (too bad it's awkward to do it beforehand), after all that's said and done, how do we confront the client and educate them? In terms they understand and are willing to accept?

That said, I already have an open PO (smart!) for any edits and production changes for every month, so really, if they ask for work, I say, "I'll put this on the October hourly/production". Boom, no worries, I bill them, if they ask for more work, they pay me.
     
production_coordinator
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2005
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 23, 2006, 01:21 PM
 
Originally Posted by Photo678 View Post
For a regular client like that, I probably would of turned over the psd's as well. Alot of times I do things for clients that are date specific, and sometimes they want and editable file so they can change dates or whatever....instead of having me open it up, spend 3 minutes changing a line of text and sending it to them. It's easier to have them have it, as I know they will use me for the design work, and probably wont be giving out the psd to someone else to use for another project.

You made the right decision
As a production coordinator, I ask designers to turn over their Quark/Photoshop files on a regular basis. I insist upon it when we sign the contract. My main reason is NOT to give it to another designer or even to change it myself. I want it in the case of an emergency where I need to make a quick change IMMEDIATELY.

Some of our changes can't wait hours to be made and my designers are mostly freelance so they may not even be around.
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 23, 2006, 02:07 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator View Post
As a production coordinator, I ask designers to turn over their Quark/Photoshop files on a regular basis. I insist upon it when we sign the contract. My main reason is NOT to give it to another designer or even to change it myself. I want it in the case of an emergency where I need to make a quick change IMMEDIATELY.

Some of our changes can't wait hours to be made and my designers are mostly freelance so they may not even be around.
there's no reason you shouldn't get the files. it's absurd to think clients need to come back to designers for every possible tweak. deadlines simply don't allow for such luxury in most cases. i hate to admit this but it's true.
     
production_coordinator
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2005
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 23, 2006, 04:59 PM
 
Originally Posted by art_director View Post
there's no reason you shouldn't get the files. it's absurd to think clients need to come back to designers for every possible tweak. deadlines simply don't allow for such luxury in most cases. i hate to admit this but it's true.
I accept that a designer has the right not to give me the Quark/InDesign/Photoshop/Illustrator file, but I also have the right not to choose them because of it. I also feel there should be some level of trust between the company and the designer.
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 23, 2006, 05:04 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator View Post
I accept that a designer has the right not to give me the Quark/InDesign/Photoshop/Illustrator file, but I also have the right not to choose them because of it. I also feel there should be some level of trust between the company and the designer.
i have to respectfully disagree. we don't have the right to turn you down and should always hand over the files. additionally, any designer wirth his / her salt isn't interested in making minor tweaks. production people are more than capable of such tasks.
     
production_coordinator
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2005
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 23, 2006, 05:12 PM
 
Originally Posted by art_director View Post
i have to respectfully disagree. we don't have the right to turn you down and should always hand over the files. additionally, any designer wirth his / her salt isn't interested in making minor tweaks. production people are more than capable of such tasks.
That's why I love your style.

I just had a designer REFUSE to give me Quark files. I hope they aren't upset when I don't use them next year.
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 23, 2006, 05:16 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator View Post
That's why I love your style.

I just had a designer REFUSE to give me Quark files. I hope they aren't upset when I don't use them next year.
who cares of they are? you have a job to do and freelancers exist to make your life easier, not more difficult.

no doubt there are times when i get cheesed off about something a client wants. but, in the end, they're the client and it's my job to deliver. period.

if more kids came out of school understanding this simple principal the reputation of the advertising industry would be dramatically improved.

call it age. call it experience. call it common sense. call it business. call it what ever you like. it's a fact.
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 23, 2006, 05:18 PM
 
i should add that the comparison to photography bends my beak. it's simply not the same game.
     
production_coordinator
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2005
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 23, 2006, 08:54 PM
 
Originally Posted by art_director View Post
who cares of they are? you have a job to do and freelancers exist to make your life easier, not more difficult.

no doubt there are times when i get cheesed off about something a client wants. but, in the end, they're the client and it's my job to deliver. period.

if more kids came out of school understanding this simple principal the reputation of the advertising industry would be dramatically improved.

call it age. call it experience. call it common sense. call it business. call it what ever you like. it's a fact.
Ugh... I'm just tired of dealing with this one designer. He isn't even all that good. Sure his price is lower, but at times it's not worth the frustration. He won't even start a project unless I give him a schedule!

Today he had the nerve to email me and the my supervisor ranting that he was furious that I proofed something without him.

I just wanted to scream "I'M THE CLIENT!!!"

I know I'm annoying at times, and the designers just want to wrap up a project so they can get paid, but this one in particular doesn't seem to understand that if she took the effort to help me move some of this along, we could do more projects!!!"

ARG!! I'm just tired of telling my boss "oh, it's with [his name] so it's being worked on..."
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 23, 2006, 11:09 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator View Post
Ugh... I'm just tired of dealing with this one designer. He isn't even all that good. Sure his price is lower, but at times it's not worth the frustration. He won't even start a project unless I give him a schedule!
cheaper isn't an asset when a freelancer makes life hell. sorry to hear you're stuck with a stable of problems. do you have some solid options to compensate for the attitudes?
     
Chuckit
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: San Diego, CA, USA
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 03:53 AM
 
Originally Posted by art_director View Post
i should add that the comparison to photography bends my beak. it's simply not the same game.
How not? It seems to me that both are creating art. Where does the difference come in?
Chuck
___
"Instead of either 'multi-talented' or 'multitalented' use 'bisexual'."
     
Westbo
Dedicated MacNNer
Join Date: Feb 1999
Location: ME
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 05:50 AM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator View Post
Ugh... I'm just tired of dealing with this one designer. He isn't even all that good. Sure his price is lower, but at times it's not worth the frustration. He won't even start a project unless I give him a schedule!

Today he had the nerve to email me and the my supervisor ranting that he was furious that I proofed something without him.

I just wanted to scream "I'M THE CLIENT!!!"

I know I'm annoying at times, and the designers just want to wrap up a project so they can get paid, but this one in particular doesn't seem to understand that if she took the effort to help me move some of this along, we could do more projects!!!"

ARG!! I'm just tired of telling my boss "oh, it's with [his name] so it's being worked on..."

I've got a the perfect solution... call me! (Yes, I know I'm shameless)

W2
     
tpicco
Mac Enthusiast
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Hell's Kitchen, NYC
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 08:43 AM
 
For me, this all depends on what's in the file. A Quark or InDesign layout? Sure, take it... no problem.

But what if, along the way, I created original art in Illustrator or Photoshop or whatever? Back in the paper & ink days, when I finished an illustration, I gave it to the client to shoot or scan and got the original back. THAT was stipulated when I was contracted to do an illustration. I still got screwed, like when one client used the illuatration on the splash page and then re-used sections of it throughout the article without paying me additional, but at least I stil lhad the original.

Nowadays, are there such things as "originals" anymore, digitally speaking?
     
production_coordinator
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2005
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 09:51 AM
 
Originally Posted by tpicco View Post
For me, this all depends on what's in the file. A Quark or InDesign layout? Sure, take it... no problem.

But what if, along the way, I created original art in Illustrator or Photoshop or whatever? Back in the paper & ink days, when I finished an illustration, I gave it to the client to shoot or scan and got the original back. THAT was stipulated when I was contracted to do an illustration. I still got screwed, like when one client used the illuatration on the splash page and then re-used sections of it throughout the article without paying me additional, but at least I stil lhad the original.

Nowadays, are there such things as "originals" anymore, digitally speaking?
I feel artwork is protected along with photography, but if I pass you the photos (or artwork that I commissioned), the text, and we talk about what I'm looking for... and then you aren't willing to give me the Quark files...

...I'm going to be upset.
     
production_coordinator
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2005
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 09:55 AM
 
Originally Posted by art_director View Post
cheaper isn't an asset when a freelancer makes life hell. sorry to hear you're stuck with a stable of problems. do you have some solid options to compensate for the attitudes?
He isn't THAT cheap... or maybe I'm cheap.

Most of the stuff is template work. I realize it's not trivial, but paying $1000+ to implement a 6 page brochure from a template where I give clean-ish copy and photos...

I guess I am a little crazy. I just feel like I'm paying "design hours" for "implementation work"
     
tpicco
Mac Enthusiast
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Hell's Kitchen, NYC
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 12:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator View Post
I feel artwork is protected along with photography, but if I pass you the photos (or artwork that I commissioned), the text, and we talk about what I'm looking for... and then you aren't willing to give me the Quark files...

...I'm going to be upset.
oh heck... as a freelancer, I think I'm supposed to give you the Quark files... and even if I didn't, what stops you from getting them from the printer? I mean, it's YOUR job...
     
iomatic  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Oct 1999
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 01:11 PM
 
The comparison between photography and design was just to illustrate the differences the two fields have in dealing with digital files/artwork.

Anyway, I think that there's some inherent belief that if you create design for commerce, for some reason, it's a commission (i.e., subcontracted) to a designer, and that it's sort of understood (at least by the client) that the end-art will be used for the client, and why-should-we-have-to-pay-for-the-PSD-file-? thought process sets in.

You have to understand some of the clients' perspective. They just want the job done and make sure they maintain their job position, look good in front of their boss (or make them look good), etc.; they really don't care all that much about digital rights management, motion blur, Quark vs. InDesign— and after all, should they? That's not their job, that's ours. (along with brand consistency, marketing messaging, ROI, media placement, and everything else they know.)
     
Chuckit
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: San Diego, CA, USA
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 01:12 PM
 
Originally Posted by tpicco View Post
oh heck... as a freelancer, I think I'm supposed to give you the Quark files... and even if I didn't, what stops you from getting them from the printer?
The fact that the printer has a PDF? Most printers I know these days prefer PDFs anyway.
Chuck
___
"Instead of either 'multi-talented' or 'multitalented' use 'bisexual'."
     
andi*pandi
Moderator
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: inside 128, north of 90
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 03:18 PM
 
It does depend on scale of work. Some clients feel as though they can get the PSDs and Indesign files and make changes themselves to save money, so giving away the files is like giving away future work. If I were freelancing I would happily make text edits at a cheaper rate than design rates--it's still money to me. If you do a lot of work for someone and feel comfortable they'll come back to you, then it's an investment in good will.

I gave files to a client once, and they came back to me after realizing they'd have to pay $1000 for the adobe suite to make any changes. After that I gave them flattened outlined art to print from. Eventually they paid me for the layered art for their local printer to make edits.
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 03:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by Chuckit View Post
How not? It seems to me that both are creating art. Where does the difference come in?
i'm no lawyer so my interpretation cannot be taken in front of a judge.

when a photographer opens the shutter they create a piece of ownable art -- they own it and can lease it out to the highest bidder. under certain circumstances they can sell it outright. in other situations they might work for a studio (internal or independent) and they do not own the imagery. an example of this is a second shooter hired by a studio for big jobs.

photographers own their images for fifty years (i believe) beyond their death -- the ownership transfers to their next of kin.

by contrast, if you create a logo it's not yours. it belongs to the company you created it for. take the nike logo. the person who created it was paid a pittance -- rumor has it $50. that person doesn't own the logo and cannot charge a years usage fee.

the differences are finely tuned and do not favor us -- the designers / art directors.

if it makes you feel better, copywriters are in the same boat.
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 03:36 PM
 
Originally Posted by tpicco View Post
For me, this all depends on what's in the file. A Quark or InDesign layout? Sure, take it... no problem.

But what if, along the way, I created original art in Illustrator or Photoshop or whatever? Back in the paper & ink days, when I finished an illustration, I gave it to the client to shoot or scan and got the original back. THAT was stipulated when I was contracted to do an illustration. I still got screwed, like when one client used the illuatration on the splash page and then re-used sections of it throughout the article without paying me additional, but at least I stil lhad the original.

Nowadays, are there such things as "originals" anymore, digitally speaking?
illustrations aren't in the same category as designs. they're yours for life, i believe.

yes, there still are originals in the digital age. that said, good luck proving the original.
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 03:37 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator View Post
I guess I am a little crazy. I just feel like I'm paying "design hours" for "implementation work"
nope, you're in the right.
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 03:40 PM
 
Originally Posted by andi*pandi View Post
It does depend on scale of work. Some clients feel as though they can get the PSDs and Indesign files and make changes themselves to save money, so giving away the files is like giving away future work. If I were freelancing I would happily make text edits at a cheaper rate than design rates--it's still money to me. If you do a lot of work for someone and feel comfortable they'll come back to you, then it's an investment in good will.

I gave files to a client once, and they came back to me after realizing they'd have to pay $1000 for the adobe suite to make any changes. After that I gave them flattened outlined art to print from. Eventually they paid me for the layered art for their local printer to make edits.
here, in mpls., target produces all their own work regardless of who designed it -- be it an agency or a freelancer. often times they screw it up but that's the price we pay.
     
tpicco
Mac Enthusiast
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Hell's Kitchen, NYC
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 06:44 PM
 
Originally Posted by andi*pandi View Post
It does depend on scale of work. Some clients feel as though they can get the PSDs and Indesign files and make changes themselves to save money, so giving away the files is like giving away future work.
So tell me... once I buy a house that I had built for myself, am I forbidden to do any carpentry or painting myself?

Holding work hostage does not insure future work...
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 06:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by tpicco View Post
So tell me... once I buy a house that I had built for myself, am I forbidden to do any carpentry or painting myself?

Holding work hostage does not insure future work...
nor does it make for good client relations.
     
Chuckit
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: San Diego, CA, USA
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 07:02 PM
 
Originally Posted by tpicco View Post
So tell me... once I buy a house that I had built for myself, am I forbidden to do any carpentry or painting myself?
No, but don't expect the contractor to leave his tools and workmen for you. You aren't forbidden from editing the image without the PSD file — it's just not as easy.
Chuck
___
"Instead of either 'multi-talented' or 'multitalented' use 'bisexual'."
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 24, 2006, 07:25 PM
 
Originally Posted by Chuckit View Post
No, but don't expect the contractor to leave his tools and workmen for you. You aren't forbidden from editing the image without the PSD file — it's just not as easy.
only if you're working on low end stuff. if you're working on a car ad, well, good luck.
     
himself
Mac Elite
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Live at the BBQ
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 25, 2006, 01:59 AM
 
Originally Posted by art_director View Post
i'm no lawyer so my interpretation cannot be taken in front of a judge.

when a photographer opens the shutter they create a piece of ownable art -- they own it and can lease it out to the highest bidder. under certain circumstances they can sell it outright. in other situations they might work for a studio (internal or independent) and they do not own the imagery. an example of this is a second shooter hired by a studio for big jobs.

photographers own their images for fifty years (i believe) beyond their death -- the ownership transfers to their next of kin.

by contrast, if you create a logo it's not yours. it belongs to the company you created it for. take the nike logo. the person who created it was paid a pittance -- rumor has it $50. that person doesn't own the logo and cannot charge a years usage fee.

the differences are finely tuned and do not favor us -- the designers / art directors.

if it makes you feel better, copywriters are in the same boat.
The only difference is in the granted rights, whether implied or explicit. When a designer creates a logo, it is indeed theirs... that is, up until the designer grants all rights to the work to the client (which is the standard practice for logos in this example). Most of the time agreements will explicitly state these terms, sometimes it is only implied (which leaves more room for confusion, in my experience).

By law (and international convention), any "artistic" creation is copyrighted by the author the moment it is made. This applies to photography and illustration, as well as to graphic design (a.ka. "applied arts"), and of course, many other fields. The only times when it doesn't apply is when an agreement is made for the ownership to be transferred to someone who is not the author, as in the case of a freelance subcontractor or corporate logo.

Just like iomatic said, we just don't understand and enforce these rules as a group (we tend to let our clients do that for us) and many of us have grown accustomed to their terms, so we don't benefit from these rules that exist to address these very concerns.
"Bill Gates can't guarantee Windows... how can you guarantee my safety?"
-John Crichton
     
himself
Mac Elite
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Live at the BBQ
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 25, 2006, 02:04 AM
 
Originally Posted by andi*pandi View Post
It does depend on scale of work. Some clients feel as though they can get the PSDs and Indesign files and make changes themselves to save money, so giving away the files is like giving away future work. If I were freelancing I would happily make text edits at a cheaper rate than design rates--it's still money to me. If you do a lot of work for someone and feel comfortable they'll come back to you, then it's an investment in good will.

I gave files to a client once, and they came back to me after realizing they'd have to pay $1000 for the adobe suite to make any changes. After that I gave them flattened outlined art to print from. Eventually they paid me for the layered art for their local printer to make edits.
I think that this is a judgment call that has to be made on a per-project or per-client basis. In general, the rule is to not give away your originals to the client (at least, not for free, and at least in my case).
"Bill Gates can't guarantee Windows... how can you guarantee my safety?"
-John Crichton
     
bluedog
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 25, 2006, 10:52 AM
 
I was going to stay out of this debate as it usually ends up with some agreeing to hold all files and rights and others who are willing to pass off the files as they see fit according to their customer and payment.

But I thought it would be helpful for any designers who decide to give the files up to note a few things you may or may not wish to give up when passing on formats such as native Photoshop or Illustrator files.

Usually when a client asks for the files they wish to repurpose them or simply change a date or some text that is included in the files. This would be fine, but with the right person the risk is they send your files to someone else (if their a cheapskate they find a budget designer) who uses your work and files.

Illustrator saves your BRUSHES and other PATTERNS if you use them in the native files (or if you choose compatibility). I suggest if you are giving these files away that you don't give your created brushes and patterns and rather expand those so they are not given away.

One primary reason for expanding your brushes is, if you give them away and they begin using them to create new art using your tools, they may use your work in ways you didn't intend and may not reflect well on the work you do (if it were to appear like you created the art they made with your brushes).
( Last edited by bluedog; Oct 25, 2006 at 04:00 PM. )
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 25, 2006, 11:55 AM
 
Originally Posted by himself View Post
The only difference is in the granted rights, whether implied or explicit. When a designer creates a logo, it is indeed theirs... that is, up until the designer grants all rights to the work to the client (which is the standard practice for logos in this example). Most of the time agreements will explicitly state these terms, sometimes it is only implied (which leaves more room for confusion, in my experience).

By law (and international convention), any "artistic" creation is copyrighted by the author the moment it is made. This applies to photography and illustration, as well as to graphic design (a.ka. "applied arts"), and of course, many other fields. The only times when it doesn't apply is when an agreement is made for the ownership to be transferred to someone who is not the author, as in the case of a freelance subcontractor or corporate logo.

Just like iomatic said, we just don't understand and enforce these rules as a group (we tend to let our clients do that for us) and many of us have grown accustomed to their terms, so we don't benefit from these rules that exist to address these very concerns.
at the end of the day the client owns the work whether right or not. just try to keep it from them. don't worry, i'll come to the bar you're working at and leave you big tips.
     
himself
Mac Elite
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Live at the BBQ
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 25, 2006, 02:43 PM
 
Originally Posted by art_director View Post
at the end of the day the client owns the work whether right or not. just try to keep it from them. don't worry, i'll come to the bar you're working at and leave you big tips.
You mean the rooftop bar at my French villa? Only if I invite you.
"Bill Gates can't guarantee Windows... how can you guarantee my safety?"
-John Crichton
     
xe0
Forum Regular
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Australia
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 26, 2006, 07:22 AM
 
Originally Posted by himself View Post
By law (and international convention), any "artistic" creation is copyrighted by the author the moment it is made. This applies to photography and illustration, as well as to graphic design (a.ka. "applied arts").
Correct.

I have a rule I use with my clients. Our agency owns all copyright on all works created. Period. If the clients request the source files - then we negotiate a new license that allows them to hold the source files at a nominal fee. A word of advice. The laws of intellectual property & Copyright were instituted for a reason. Use them. Your intellectual property is what makes your services valuable. Don't throw your creative solutions out the window as if it were a second-rate commodity.

Think it through and come to an arrangement that maintains your clients loyalty and satisfaction, while also retaining your rights as the creator of original content.

If you don't hold value in IP - Then your clients wont either.
     
production_coordinator
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2005
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 26, 2006, 09:25 AM
 
Originally Posted by tpicco View Post
oh heck... as a freelancer, I think I'm supposed to give you the Quark files... and even if I didn't, what stops you from getting them from the printer? I mean, it's YOUR job...
I do get them from the printer

And none of my printers (very high end stuff) prefer PDF files.
     
production_coordinator
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2005
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 26, 2006, 09:28 AM
 
Originally Posted by xe0 View Post
Correct.

I have a rule I use with my clients. Our agency owns all copyright on all works created. Period. If the clients request the source files - then we negotiate a new license that allows them to hold the source files at a nominal fee. A word of advice. The laws of intellectual property & Copyright were instituted for a reason. Use them. Your intellectual property is what makes your services valuable. Don't throw your creative solutions out the window as if it were a second-rate commodity.

Think it through and come to an arrangement that maintains your clients loyalty and satisfaction, while also retaining your rights as the creator of original content.

If you don't hold value in IP - Then your clients wont either.
So if you designed a brochure for me, and I asked for the Quark file to send to a printer, what would your company do?
     
xe0
Forum Regular
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Australia
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 26, 2006, 07:27 PM
 
Originally Posted by production_coordinator View Post
So if you designed a brochure for me, and I asked for the Quark file to send to a printer, what would your company do?
We would ask what you would need the Quark file for. If you were requesting the Quark file for print production only, then we would politely say to you, "we use a PDF workflow, which we find is the best system for print production. That being the case we will gladly distill a high quality PDF file for you immediately". If it were for another reason, as mentioned above we would then be happy to negotiate an additional or new license that ensures you remain a satisfied and happy client.

In most cases this issue of source files / copyright / print production is outlined at the very beginning of all projects; so we rarely get the old 'we want the source files' request.

By the way, if you guys are still sending in .qxd or .indd files directly to the printer, I would seriously take a look at a PDF workflow. The benefits of employing the power of a PDF standard is a fantastic time, energy and money saver.
( Last edited by xe0; Oct 26, 2006 at 07:35 PM. )
     
siMac
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: ZZ9 Plural Z Alpha
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 27, 2006, 07:22 AM
 
Originally Posted by himself View Post
The only difference is in the granted rights, whether implied or explicit. When a designer creates a logo, it is indeed theirs... that is, up until the designer grants all rights to the work to the client (which is the standard practice for logos in this example). Most of the time agreements will explicitly state these terms, sometimes it is only implied (which leaves more room for confusion, in my experience).

By law (and international convention), any "artistic" creation is copyrighted by the author the moment it is made. This applies to photography and illustration, as well as to graphic design (a.ka. "applied arts"), and of course, many other fields. The only times when it doesn't apply is when an agreement is made for the ownership to be transferred to someone who is not the author, as in the case of a freelance subcontractor or corporate logo.

Just like iomatic said, we just don't understand and enforce these rules as a group (we tend to let our clients do that for us) and many of us have grown accustomed to their terms, so we don't benefit from these rules that exist to address these very concerns.
Mod up for truthspeaking.

At the studio where I work we only supply PDFs to clients/printers. These are unprotected so minor changes can be made but the source files belong to us. This is because we have had our work stolen so many times we have had to take steps to protect our IP. In the case of logos we explain to the client before starting work that he can buy instances of his logo (ie. stationery etc) or he can buy the logo itself and all the rights to it, but that these two options are not the same price.
|\|0\/\/ 15 7|-|3 71|\/|3
     
siMac
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: ZZ9 Plural Z Alpha
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 27, 2006, 07:25 AM
 
Originally Posted by xe0 View Post
We would ask what you would need the Quark file for. If you were requesting the Quark file for print production only, then we would politely say to you, "we use a PDF workflow, which we find is the best system for print production. That being the case we will gladly distill a high quality PDF file for you immediately". If it were for another reason, as mentioned above we would then be happy to negotiate an additional or new license that ensures you remain a satisfied and happy client.

In most cases this issue of source files / copyright / print production is outlined at the very beginning of all projects; so we rarely get the old 'we want the source files' request.

By the way, if you guys are still sending in .qxd or .indd files directly to the printer, I would seriously take a look at a PDF workflow. The benefits of employing the power of a PDF standard is a fantastic time, energy and money saver.
^^^ Give this man the prize. Intellectual property considerations aside, sending native files to the printer is just asking for trouble.
|\|0\/\/ 15 7|-|3 71|\/|3
     
Photo678
Dedicated MacNNer
Join Date: Dec 2003
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 27, 2006, 01:25 PM
 
Originally Posted by siMac View Post
^^^ Give this man the prize. Intellectual property considerations aside, sending native files to the printer is just asking for trouble.
Unless the printer insists on receiving native files....

you know something though, i'm in the business to make money and maintain clients, not fight over issues of who owns what....as far as I'm concerned you own whatever i do for you. You hired me to work for you and create something for you. If you are cheap enough to steal my work and use it as something else, I will not work for you anymore.

Most clients I work with are very understanding about all of this, appreciate me not letting my pride get in the way of the work and the files they need, and are typically stand up people.

I'm not in the business to haggle over a few extra bucks if you want the native files, it just really isn't worth my time. STeal the work, and use it elsewhere and you will have a few problems.

In this world of internet and telecommuting, trust really is the key issue here...You are trusting me to supply you with quality work in a fair amount of time, and I am trusting you to pay upon completion and not steal my work for other usage.......this philosophy has worked very well for me, and have only gotten screwed once in 6 years of doing this.
     
iomatic  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Oct 1999
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 28, 2006, 03:16 AM
 
In my experience the client could give a rat's small posterior about intellectual copyright, PDF workflow and other nuances we care about. In the end, it's about the product, delivering the product, and a great product. If you miss the strategy entirely, they won't care about InDesign vs. PDF, they'll care more about whether to start looking for another designer/art director/creative.

I'm the first to say, "look that's just not on strategy. I took your idea under consideration, and it's wrong. You hired me for a), b), and c), and this what we'll do" (thank god I don't have an ass-kissing account person). This is far more valuable to them, and more important than IP—getting the job right. There is no IP. It's feckin' commercial art. More important, there's the Next Job™.

Just my experience.
     
BlueSky
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: ------>
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 29, 2006, 10:56 AM
 
I've been working on a GUI project for a client, and I've run into this issue. I normally only release the layered PSD if the client will need to make small changes such as text or if they want to make their own buttons, controls etc. from the PSD. Even then I usually combine many of the layers so that the essential art can't be easily changed or used elsewhere.

In the middle of this project, the client asked for the PSD for page one of the GUI, and I sent it, as I was told at the outset that the boss was extremely particular and an artist himself...and bottom line, I trusted them. They said they were going to take my elements and offer an alternative layout for me to work from.

Over the course of a week and then after them asking me for the PSD's for the entire project, it became apparent they were going the do-it-yourself route from the elements I produced, so I finally emailed them and (politely) told them that this is what I think they're doing and that if that's the route they want to take, then we need to make different arrangements...but that I'm not giving them all of the PSD's before the job is complete and paid for, and told them why.

That was a long sentence.

That was Thursday, and haven't heard back from them, no surprise. I had second thoughts about being confrontational, but I keep going back to first thought, which is they don't need completely layered files for the entire project in order to show me a layout, that I shouldn't have sent the first one and that I'm a bit pissed that I let it go this way. **** trust.

So, a little more hardened, hopefully a little less ignorant and renewing my resolve to keep the PSD's.
     
siMac
Mac Elite
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: ZZ9 Plural Z Alpha
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 29, 2006, 01:58 PM
 
Originally Posted by Photo678 View Post
Unless the printer insists on receiving native files....
It's not 2000 anymore.

Your printer won't accept PDF files? Change your printer.
|\|0\/\/ 15 7|-|3 71|\/|3
     
Photo678
Dedicated MacNNer
Join Date: Dec 2003
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 29, 2006, 05:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by siMac View Post
It's not 2000 anymore.

Your printer won't accept PDF files? Change your printer.

no no, my printers accept pdf's...just sometimes a client has a printer that he refuses to part with. Often times these printers are slightly archaic, and refuse to update themselves to a solid pdf workflow.
     
art_director
Professional Poster
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Minneapolis, MN U.S.A.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Oct 30, 2006, 04:07 PM
 
Originally Posted by xe0 View Post
Correct.

I have a rule I use with my clients. Our agency owns all copyright on all works created. Period. If the clients request the source files - then we negotiate a new license that allows them to hold the source files at a nominal fee. A word of advice. The laws of intellectual property & Copyright were instituted for a reason. Use them. Your intellectual property is what makes your services valuable. Don't throw your creative solutions out the window as if it were a second-rate commodity.

Think it through and come to an arrangement that maintains your clients loyalty and satisfaction, while also retaining your rights as the creator of original content.

If you don't hold value in IP - Then your clients wont either.
In the US you'd argue your way out of getting more work from your clients. Companies here don't like such tactics. Sure, you could move on but eventually your reputation would catch up with you.
     
 
Thread Tools
 
Forum Links
Forum Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts
BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Top
Privacy Policy
All times are GMT -4. The time now is 05:59 AM.
All contents of these forums © 1995-2017 MacNN. All rights reserved.
Branding + Design: www.gesamtbild.com
vBulletin v.3.8.8 © 2000-2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.,