Over the past few months, I have had to get model releases for many of my assignments. In the past, I’ve hated dealing with all of the paper–you know the drill of carrying around a stack of releases, scanning, filing–and trying to remember who’s who later on. Luckily, a few enterprising developers have made apps for the iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch to do the job. There are a few apps available, but the one I settled on is Easy Release, which handles both model and property releases. It’s stable, integrates the device’s camera, offers releases in a few different languages, and let’s you customize the release language beyond a standard blanket release with an app upgrade. It’s been wonderful for my workflow. I bring along either my iPad or my iPod and easily collect signed releases from as many subjects as I need. After the release is completed (with a witness signature, too), I just email a JPG or PDF copy of the release to myself through the app and file it away with the shoot, and everything’s done. No scanning, no trying to remember which release corresponds to which subject, no forgetting to fill in an address or phone number (all fields need to be filled before the subject can sign the release). The app does not require an active internet connection except when you want to email the release to yourself, so it’s good to use anywhere in the field. You can get Easy Release for iPad, iPhone/iPod Touch, and Android devices.
There are a number of other model release apps available for iOS devices, but I don’t have any personal experience with them. Check out these other iPad and iPhone apps and you might find something to help your workflow: Model Release, Photographers Contract Maker, Release Me HD (iPhone), Portable Contracts, Image Release, Contracts HD (iPhone), iRelease for iPhone, iD Release for iPhone, mRelease for iPhone, and Visual Media Release for iPhone. Some of these have model release language already built into the app, while others are sort of like contract frameworks which require you to import your own contract language.
UPDATE: Just noticed in the Easy Release FAQ that Getty and Alamy have stated that they accept Easy Release model releases.
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