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Topic | Under 18 asked me to take photos?
Hi all

A male model under 18 has asked me to take photos for his portfolio. It will be up to topless, but that obviously isnt as bad as a girl topless, or is it?

I've always avoided shooting anyone under 18 as I couldnt be bothered to look into it. Recently Ive had a few enquires though.

So, is it legal for me to take photos of someone under 18, without some kind of signature from the parents? Is there any special procedure I need to follow? The model in question says his parents are fully aware of him doing modelling, but I dont know that for sure do I?

Thanks to anyone that can give guidance.

hovephotoman , Photographer  posted on 05/01/2009 16:12:59   Posted 55 times

Located:Hove,East Sussex, UK
Member Since: 12/10/2008
That area is very grey and I have never come across that one.

No offence to the guy but I would not take his word for it that his parents are aware.
Children are no longer classed as Children from 16 from the view point of them 'working'
However the law says that people under the age of 18 can not pose nude etc. As you say that is normally thought of for young girls posing topless or further.

A 16/17 year old can do lingere however again this is a grey area becasue the shots can not be deemed to be sexually explicit.Flesh is going to be seen, so I think in theory you could do down to underwear with him. However I'm not sure the law has been properly tested in this area but when in doubt I would avoid it.

Theres mud that no one wants to be stuck with, if you know what I mean!

If I was to consider it, then I would be sure to have a witness with me and I would consider going to meet the guys parents for myself and seek their permission.

Let us know how you get on, it's an interesting one!
clarkey1979 , Photographer  posted on 05/01/2009 16:23:55   Posted 6 times

Located:Durham,Durham, UK
Member Since: 04/01/2009
I have done 1 shoot with a 14 year old (pics on profile), but I insisted on her parents being present, and as it was they are family friends. I would insist on a signed model release, signed by the parent/guardian. Topless male pictures are not illegal as far as I am aware, as you see kids walking the streets in summer without there shirts off, so socially it is acceptable.

Whether male or female, I would always insist on signed parental consent and one of the parents present at the shoot.

Hope this helps your dilemma
landmphotography , Photographer  posted on 05/01/2009 16:26:12   Posted 66 times

Located:Basingstoke,Hampshire, UK
Member Since: 22/10/2008
I do not photograph under 18's without parents present or them being aware beforehand what is being shot and I would expect a model release to be signed by them.

There is a whole load of misinformation about what you can and can not shoot with an under 18 and the courts have been at best inconsistent in what they have adjudged to be indecent so I chose to be very very cautious, however that is just me.

Topless with guys is likely to be fine - I would guess - given that most teenage boys trousers seem to hang halfway down their arse these days you might be advised to ensure they are pulled up properly!!!


Marcus99 , Photographer  posted on 05/01/2009 16:29:11   Posted 50 times

Located:Stroud,Gloucestershire, UK
Member Since: 23/12/2008
missinformation and missunderstanding......

The model could be fully dressed head to toe in a full ski suit... AND it could STILL be illegal.... if the model was sucking on a phallic object....

The law states INDECENT not nude. Not that I suggest anyone shoots minors nude nor topless....

Once a person is beyond Mandatory School Leaving Age, they can seek gainful employment. No need for Mom and Dad to go along too... Jeeze could you see the hassle the congestion would cause behind the counter at McD's if all the school leavers took their parents along........

If you think that you're shoot could be conceived as something dodgy.. chances are that it is.. OR you're so far on the conservative side that you're purple.
AMPhotographique , Photographer  posted on 05/01/2009 20:13:41   Posted 156 times

Located:DONCASTER,South Yorkshire, UK
Member Since: 17/10/2008
Thanks everyone for you replies, its all been very helpful. Member Image
hovephotoman , Photographer  posted on 05/01/2009 21:22:05   Posted 55 times

Located:Hove,East Sussex, UK
Member Since: 12/10/2008
Just get his parents to sign a model release form but make sure they do it in front of you, it is also adviseable to have it witnessed by a third party and signed by them too.

Remember this applies to anyone under 18 years old
terrylongdenphotog , Photographer  posted on 05/01/2009 21:34:46   Posted 1 times

Located:Nottingham,Nottinghamshire, UK
Member Since: 16/12/2008
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