Fed up of photos of the backs of people’s heads or seeing cables trailing across the floor on your event photos? – Check out what GC Photographer Amy has to say and make the most of yours.
Taking great photos of your event is a fantastic way to promote yours or your client’s business’, and more importantly, it just makes brilliant content in general. We all know, content is king.
In this digital world – everyone is constantly learning new skills to keep on top of the changing technology and techniques, (and if you are not, you should be!). So are you taking that time to focus (excuse the pun) on small aspects of your business that can really make a difference overall? By making an effort to take great event photos for your business you are showing your clients and your competitors that you’ve got this down. So on that note, let’s get going, I won’t keep you waiting for the good stuff…
1. Be personable
You can claim to be the best photographer in the whole darn world, but if you can’t interact with other human beings to help them feel at ease at the end of your lens, then you can’t be that great. We’re all human and (most of us) react well to a bit of simple communication and good manners. Rather than relying on your ability to cull through photos of people looking awkward, start the event right by being approachable and open.
If you take a nice photo of someone, show them the back of the camera. Humans are self-conscious beings, but if they see that actually, you’re doing a decent job they’ll more than likely just leave you to it and not keep hiding behind their hands or a rather cliche and over-the-top table ornament.
Have the photos you’d like to get in your mind, listen out for happy chatter, or if in a seminar setting, hold out for the jokes to capture genuine smiles. Photos that show natural reactions are much more personable than asking people to pose. Scan the room before you start taking photos, a lot of the best photos are taken when you’ve been able to predict what will happen next. Noticing which people are the most interactive, or waiting for the perfect moment. Don’t just take thousands of photos and hope for the best, there’s no shame in taking a few moments to just watch.
2. Be prepared
The clue is in the title. You should start the job with a mental (or physical) checklist of all the shots you aim at getting. Keep in mind where the photos are going to be shared and what you intend on doing with them. Make sure you take photos that have space for text should you choose to add some at a later date – good to have this in mind prior to the event. A bit of ‘white space’, rather than just filling the frame, may just help you or your client in the future.
If you’re going to be taking group shots, make a list that you can check off as you go. This means that you won’t have missed any ‘important’ shots you were hoping to get, and ensures you don’t end up taking the same group over and over again.
3. Keep it natural
For some of us, our natural reaction when we see a camera is to pose, pout and “shuzz” the hair. If you nail the personable part of photography, then being able to capture photos of people looking natural and ‘normal’ will come easily to you. Getting a good mix of posed and unposed shots is a great thing to do, natural images are always going to showcase your event better because it looks less like they’ve been forced into looking like they’re having a great time.
4. Invest in a basic camera kit
Firstly, I just want to reiterate, you don’t need a full-on camera kit to take good images – I even go on about how fabulous a phone camera can be in our blog ‘Stop Using Stock’. However, it is going to up your game tenfold (which is what we want to do right- it’s why you’re here!). An entry-level camera is about £200 then you can get a basic 50mm lens for between £70-100 dependant on brand. That’s all you really need to start taking some great shots. It’s very important to remember that lenses are ultimately what is going to change your image quality. There’s no point investing thousands into a camera body and not getting a good lens. So if you can afford it, always upgrade your lenses first.
5. Think about composition
When taking your images, avoid showing empty chairs as much as possible, this makes your event look less well attended and could be off-putting for future attendees. The same applies if you are in a huge room, get closer and focus on smaller groups of people to make it look fuller. You should always be trying to fill your frame with people having a great time and enjoying your event.
6. Have fun!
The last thing I want to leave you with is how important it is to just have fun while taking images! You’ll enjoy it more and it will show through the photos you produce. Get creative. Use elements around you and mix up the angles you’re shooting at. There’s no harm in getting a bit artsy every now and then. It could even end up being your favourite photo.
So get out there and do the thing! It’s time to start taking the photography you’re using seriously and keep improving your skills. By taking a little more time to prepare for the event and taking in consideration how important the images you use are you can truly up your content marketing game.
If you’re interested in learning a little more about taking great photos in general, take a look at our blog ‘Stop Using Stock’ or if the idea of speaking to people terrifies you, you can take a look at our ‘Networking for Introverts’ blog.