Read the Full OfficeNinjas Event Planning Series:
Experiential Events | Digital Tool Belt | Venue Checklist | F&B Planning | Photography & Photo Booths | Audio Visual | Event Design | Live Music | Corporate Gift-Giving
You can throw a flawless party at a stunning venue filled with smiling guests and beautifully styled food. But if you don’t walk away with photos that truly captured all that action, it may as well have never happened.
Does that sound a tad dramatic? It may be, but we consider event photos to be really important.
Despite keeping our event budgets trim, high-quality photography never gets the short stick. Photos can be used everywhere—from your company’s website and promotional videos to framed artwork for the office. You’ll definitely need them when it comes time to publicize your next event. And perhaps most importantly, your guests expect to enjoy and share photos of their experience.
Moments are precious and fleeting, so how can a Ninja ensure their gallery gets filled with professional-looking, creative images and not a handful of contenders for an Awkward Family Photos contest?
We asked Scott Roeder, owner of Oh Snap! Visuals, to share his expertise and tips for getting the most out of your event photography. He definitely knows a thing or two, since Oh Snap! has provided photo booths for each and every one of OfficeNinjas’ Bay Area events.
Do your research! This applies to traditional event photographers and photo booth vendors alike. “Great photography is a core pillar of a photo booth service, so choosing a business with a background in photography is a good indication that they will deliver good products and services,” says Scott. Seem like an obvious tidbit? It’s not when you consider that many event companies nowadays roll photo booths or other image services into service packages to beef up their party-planning add-ons.
Review galleries of past events. Look out for weak photo skills that are marked by underexposure (too dark), overexposure (too bright), out of focus or inconsistency.
Review photographers’ portfolios, considering personality and overall vibe. Do the photos they’ve chosen to highlight align with the kinds of photos you want to be taken of your event?
Book your photo booth and your photographer as soon as possible, especially if your event is during the holiday season. Scott shares,
There are a limited number of event days (Thursday through Saturday) during the holiday season, and every company will be trying to lock in their event date. Plus, many companies only have 1-2 photo booths to rent out.
Agree on turnaround time for photos at the time of booking. Scott says you should expect between one and three weeks.
Ask for a certificate of insurance. Most event venues require this of all vendors, but this request can also help weed out amateurs.
Provide a shot list that highlights “must have” photos, as well as preferred dimensions, orientation, and composition. This sets clear expectations for what the photographer will deliver, and it also can help determine whether or not a second photographer is needed. (Psst—if you want to eyeball the shot list we’ve perfected for OfficeNinjas events, pop a comment below and we’ll email you a free copy.)
THE ANATOMY OF A PHOTO BOOTH
- Make sure your contract includes unlimited printing.
- Props are everything! Some companies will even source props specific to your event’s theme.
- A live slideshow adds an interactive element and encourages more guests to join in on the fun.
- Guests expect to share photos immediately. Make sure the company you use allows for immediate posting to Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
- The perpetual motion of animated GIFs can help capture the energy of your event.
- Don’t forget to brand your event with a one-of-a-kind hashtag to take advantage of Hashtag Printing!
- Deck out your photo booth with a custom vinyl sticker wrap that transforms the booth into a branded machine.
- An interesting backdrop can change the game. Opt for a traditional step and repeat (we use Event Step & Repeat), or get creative with a mural or a green screen that allows guests to choose their own backdrop.
Do you have any tips for picking an event photographer? Any tricks for making the most of your photo booth rental? Share them in the comments below!