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Subcontracting question

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Randy Wheeler
Subcontracting question
on Mar 25, 2011 at 7:33:53 pm

I subcontracted a motion graphic artist fro the first time to do a logo animation for one of my clients that I'm working with on a video project. It is my clients business name that is being animated. I do motion graphics also but liked the style of this motion graphic artist's work and felt it would fit my client logo better than what I could have done. There was also time constraints and I'm slow at doing motion graphics.

The artist has a website with samples of past and current work plus a Facebook and Twitter that he posted about current work he is doing. Is it out of line for me to ask him not to post anything about this logo animation I subcontracted him for since it is possible that the client could Google their own name in the future and possibly find out that I hired a subcontractor for this part of the project or do I just tell the client I needed to sub that part out?

What is the protocol in this situation since I would like to work with both my client and this motion graphic artist in the future.


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Mark D'Agostino
Re: Subcontracting question
on Mar 25, 2011 at 7:56:40 pm

We never ever post anything or put anything on our reel without permission from our client. Unless there is an agreement that states otherwise, the client owns that animation. They paid for it. You are your sub contractor's client and he should likewise not post anything without your permission. If he does it is reasonable to ask him to remove it. If he refuses then that's one less sub you hire in the future.

Mark D'Agostino

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Arnie Schlissel
Re: Subcontracting question
on Mar 25, 2011 at 8:29:44 pm

There's absolutely nothing wrong with you asking your vendor not to mention your client on his web site or facebook page.

But a more interesting question is why don't you want your client to know that you sometimes hire people who are the more qualified than you to help you create work for them. In my book, that's a plus, it means that you put their needs first and want to find the right person to do the job for them.

Post production is not an afterthought!

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Scott Sheriff
Re: Subcontracting question
on Mar 25, 2011 at 8:54:03 pm

I agree with what Mark said.

One thing you really can't do much about is people just listing you, or this particular company as someone they have done work for, sans actual graphic.

Just one of the hazards associated with concealing the fact that you are using a sub.
Since you expressed a desire to continue to work with these folks, which is good because 'cutting them off' wont' really solve your problem. You might consider being more open about using subs. Lots of businesses use them for various reasons, and being open about using them doesn't mean you have to disclose why.
And/or talk to your mograph person about coming to an arrangement about who gets credit for the work, and being more discrete. Perhaps there is a middle ground.

Scott Sheriff

I have a system, it has stuff in it, and stuff hooked to it. I have a camera, it can record stuff. I read the manuals, and know how to use this stuff and lots of other stuff too.
You should be suitably impressed...

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Scott Carnegie
Re: Subcontracting question
on Mar 25, 2011 at 9:01:40 pm

No need to hide the fact that you are using a subcontractor, I have it in my contracts that I may hire sub-contractors when needed and when I meet with a client and we are planning a project I will often mention the team I will be working with. I always hire out for script writing and research and sometimes for gfx and shooting, I do all of the editing myself.

IMO it makes for more client confidence knowing that a team of experienced people will be workin on their project, I am running it and finding the best people for each task, definately a plus when negotiating with a client.

Media Production Services
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

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grinner hester
Re: Subcontracting question
on Mar 26, 2011 at 8:28:40 pm

Not out of line at all. When an artists asks you if they can use your content on their reel, it's not just a compliment they are paying you. They/we are actually asking your permission.

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Steve Wargo
Re: Subcontracting question
on Apr 3, 2011 at 9:03:37 am

"...ask him not to?" More like "This is private property and it will not appear anywhere."

I have everyone sign a privacy agreement.

I just had a guy do an effect for a short and I saw a FaceBook post from him that stated "Working on a cool ghost effect. I'll post it tomorrow". I posted "I hope this isn't our intellectual property you're about to publish". There was never another word.This was the entire ending of our short and would have made it worthless.

We recently did a video on the latest album from Megadeath and Capitol Records had us sign a $10,000,000 agreement that not frame of anything would leave our studio.

Steve Wargo
Tempe, Arizona
It's a dry heat!

Sony HDCAM F-900 & HDW-2000/1 deck
5 Final Cut (not quite PRO) systems
Sony HVR-M25 HDV deck
2-Sony EX-1 HD .

Ask me how to Market Yourself using Send Out Cards

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