18 September, 2008

My Thoughts on Watermarks.

I think they suck. I think they're lame. I think they detract from your work. No if, ands or butts about it. HOWEVER some of us feel a real desire to protect our work from pirates. I get that. One thought to keep in mind is what my dear Dad always says, "Piracy is better than obscurity" but I digress. If you are going to do a watermark, may I recommend what I see to be the happy, clean, beautiful alternative? Click HERE to see the link to Digital Photography School for the Photoshop tutorial. This is what I'm leaning toward on my new (coming SOO SOON I CAN TASTE IT) blog.

Here are a few of my favorite examples of this type of watermarking:


de said...

I read the DPS tutorial today. It does give a classy feel to the watermarking thing. I have been pondering watermarking myself... I think you are on to something here!

Anonymous said...

Woot Woot!

Ashley said...

I totally agree. I hate it when I can't see the whole pic.

Anonymous said...

Audrey Woulard rocks!!! She's so cool in person, too! I love her work! I had a simple watermark earlier this year, but I keep changing things around; trying this new one for now, but -- who knows! -- may go to another watermark before the year is over. Women, so indecisive ... haha!

Unknown said...

I agree with you on the whole watermark thing, but couldnt someone just crop this type out? seriously, if they cant, im so there!

Luis Murillo said...

Jenn, yes, they can simply crop it and they still have the image. Even if you add a watermark that goes over your image it can still be removed by a highly skilled photo editor with a good photo editing software.
I have a small watermark on my photos and it's just for information really. I have the idea that if you put it on the internet it can be taken by anyone so no matter what type of protection you put on the photo it can still be removed with the right tools...not even what Flickr and other sites do of putting a transparent image ontop of the original image or putting your images on a flash presentation...you can still take a screenshot and get the image. If someone is really determined to steal the photo from a site he/she will be able to do so.

Natalie. said...


LMurillo is right. If someone is absolutely determined, they will get your images. But here's my question for you. . . and I mean this with all the love I can muster. . . So what? Seriously. Why do you care? They will NEVER be able to print the image, assuming that you're posting a low resolution version and what could they possibly do with the image that would really hurt you or your business as a photographer? Honestly? They could pass the image off as their own, yes, but even then, how is that going to hurt YOU, other than just be terribly maddening?

I really want to understand where you're coming from. What is your concern? Let me know and let's address it.

All the very best,


Luis Murillo said...

Personally, I post images with a good resolution because I want to show off my work and I'm really not making any money off of my photos since at this time it's a hobby. Sure I'd hate to see one of my photos on some magazine or ad and not have them credited to me but that's just a risk I have to take when posting the photos online. Even if you were to print your photos they can just be scanned...though there are better methods to protect physical media...but when it comes to digital media nothing can protect it from the most determined pirates just look at the movie and music industry

BB said...

This is fascinating... I have watermarked my images in the past but can't be bothered most of the time. I agree it takes from the image, unless it is really large and can be tucked away in the corner somehow. I put up my photos pretty small and they would not be great printed, so I reckon that's enough. I'd actually rather NOT have my name or logo on something that prints up crap!!

Am going to check out this tutorial now - thanks for piquing my interest in this subject!


Nate Finch said...

I'm coming in a bit late to this, but I recently commented on another blog about this very topic.

I agree, watermarks suck, and don't discourage determined thieves. There's almost no actual loss from having someone "steal" your picture and if there is, you can either ask them to take it down, or sue them, even if it doesn't have a watermark (Hi, Judge? Yeah, here's the RAW file of that photo, plus the other 50 I took at that site with the same camera and lens).

Honestly, I really don't like the way those digital "frames" look either. When I look at a picture online, I want to see the picture, period. Anything else detracts from the image.