Event Photography

Discussion in 'The Aspiring Professionals Forum' started by lizzard427, Jul 7, 2017.

  1. lizzard427

    lizzard427 TPF Noob!

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    My husband knows a woman who owns and helps run a few different businesses. One of which is a catering business. She told him recently that they always get questions from clients asking for photographers for their events. I have never done any work like this, I prefer nature and architecture, so I'm a little hesitant but also figured if there is a demand for it and I could work through the catering company, it might not be a bad idea for some extra money. Anyway, I've been doing a lot of research but I wanted to see if anyone can provide me with tips or know where I can find additional useful information.


     
  2. astroNikon

    astroNikon 'ya all Bananas I tell 'ya Supporting Member

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    Information such as what ??

    There are varying sizes of events for various things.
    Are you asking equipment specific question?
    rates?
    other ?
     
  3. lizzard427

    lizzard427 TPF Noob!

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    More general information, tips on event photography. I mean, I know there are a lot of variables for events. Lighting, type of event, location, etc. I'm not necessarily concerned about rates at the moment since I'm researching.
     
  4. astroNikon

    astroNikon 'ya all Bananas I tell 'ya Supporting Member

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    For a "roving people" type event I use a Nikon D600/D750 with a 24-70 type lens on a flash bracket with a flash on top with a reflector. I use the flash as needed.

    same setup I'd use for a small wedding dinner/rehearsal.
    drop the flash/bracket for the wedding.

    not sure exactly what you are asking still ..
     
  5. Trever1t

    Trever1t Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    The thing with event photography is that you do not get to choose the time of day or location of the shoot.

    Getting creative with light variables, sometimes ugly backgrounds, busy scenes can be a real challenge.

    The normal way to develop the skills is to work as an assistant or a second shooter to an established photographer.
     
  6. vintagesnaps

    vintagesnaps Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I've done events and sports. It takes being able to get photos quickly as things happen. Takes a lot of practice.

    You need to be able to frame shots well and fast, make sure nobody's getting cut off and everybody's completely in the frame; make sure the background's not 'cluttered' and you get 'clean' shots. You need to act fast.

    Here's an example. When I was taking pictures for marketing for a local team i went to a dinner/event where the players were serving as waiters. Besides needing to know what was going to happen when, it's necessary to be prepared for the unexpected - like when a couple of the player 'waiters' decided to start a spontaneous relay race thru the room carrying the trays up in the air; or when they got on stage and started an unplanned song. You need to be alert and quick on your feet - quick with your camera to be able to catch key moments.

    Get out this summer to some events in your community where attendees can bring cameras and take pictures and get in some practice. Go early, find out the schedule for the day; make sure to get significant booths, tables, whatever; figure out where the lighting looks best; find some good vantage points; make sure you're getting good clean backgrounds. That's my quick free lesson on event photography.

    Get on American Society of Media Photographers - Homepage or PPA and start learning how to license usage, how to draw up contracts, etc. etc.

    And practice, practice, practice. You need to know the camera like the back of your hand so you don't have to think much about how to adjust settings to be able to keep up with the pace of the event.
     
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  7. idcanyon

    idcanyon No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    There are other types of "event" jobs besides just general coverage. Photo booths, for example, are quite common: Couple photos homecoming or prom; at a dress up event like Halloween; or photos with Santa at Christmas. Those take a completely different set of skills and equipment. Be sure to specify what kind of job you want. Photo booth pictures are heavy on equipment and preparation but really easy once they get going.

    Things you might need to think about when providing "general coverage" for an event:
    <> Dark spaces require good low light performance and flash. Flash needs to not look like flash. The fast and light way to do this is on-camera bounce, so you need powerful bounce/swivel flash. In spaces with high ceilings or black ceilings you need to have options at your fingertips: an assistant holding a reflector, or maybe a speedlight softbox. You usually accept the job before you scout it so you had better be able to deal with anything before you take any job, unless you already know the venue.
    <> You will be asked to shoot various groups of people. You need to be able to pull off a near-portrait quality image in a moment--instantly scan the scene and find a good place for it (please don't line people up in front of a brick wall), and then light it well in a moment's notice.
    <> You need a plan for dealing with mixed lighting issues. Flash is daylight balanced. Room is light by a mix of old incandescent, CFL, and now throw in some LED...

    That said, I find events to be reasonably forgiving and low stress. People understand that there is only one of you and a whole venue full of action. If you provide good images of the main happenings then you'll be okay.

    General event photography is easy to practice on family or friends at the events that you attend. Just make a point to photograph the things you do with the idea of a client in mind.

    If you take a job this way, be confident that you can really deliver, else it will be awkward for your husband and his friend/contact.
     
  8. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Work on getting that caterer to channel some work your way...

    A little you scatch my back, I'll scratch yours could go a looooong ways, if you get what I'm saying. Just be able to deliver decent pics, or the referrals from the caterer will stop, and soon too.
     
  9. Designer

    Designer Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    The term "events" covers a LOT of possibilities. There are MANY types of events, all with their own set of characteristics, so practically impossible to predict. However, if there is a predominant theme, such as graduations, awards, fund-raising, etc, then maybe you can anticipate what is going on before you get started.

    Which venue does affect the photography, in terms of physical space, lighting, movement of people, etc. By all means, check out the venue before the event so you can make plans and preparations. Talk to the organizers, the venue manager, and if you can find them, past attendees. Do some online research as to what goes on there, and try to find photos of the event in the past. Really look at the photos and find the shortcomings so you can do better.

    Before you agree to become the official photographer for any event, know precisely what is being expected of you. If they want casual snapshots, group photos, or record shots of meetings, awards, ceremonies, etc., get it in writing in your contract.
     
  10. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    What are the laws regarding starting a business where ever it is you are.
    Are you in the USA? There's no location info in your profile.
    Like the need to register with your state for sales tax purposes and/or for self employment taxes if you're in the US.
    Most towns require a business register with them for a variety of reasons.

    How will the photos be used?
    Written permission from people in a photo, a model release, is need for the commercial use of their likeness.
    A further consideration for commercial use is copyright use licensing.
    If the photo usage is for an editorial purpose model releases aren't usually required.
    Selling prints is usually considered an editorial use.
    A Digital Photographer's Guide to Model Releases: Making the Best Business Decisions with Your Photos of People, Places and Things

    For some venues a property release may also be needed.
    Model and property release law varies by state here in the USA so there are 50 somewhat different versions.
    Copyright law is federal law and applies to all states equally.
     
  11. tecboy

    tecboy No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Shooting events are tricky. You have to pay attention to background, people, and foreground. Try not to overlapping people like taking pictures a person in front of a person. I have to move left or right quickly to get different angle and to prevent overlapping. Try to start out with a small group of people like about 4-5 people. Wait until they are spreading out to each other while they are chatting, eating, or drinking, and take picture immediately. It is hard, but I had to learn the hard way to get better.
     
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  12. lizzard427

    lizzard427 TPF Noob!

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    I live in the US. I wasn't sure if I would really need to look into that or not, I figured if it was something I did occasionally, I would be ok. I was told if I was paid more than $400, then I would need to worry about taxes and such.
    As for how the photos will be used, my understanding, is they are looking for someone to just take photos and hand them over on a flash drive. I figured if they want edited photos, I can charge accordingly, but in general, I try to keep adjustments to photos to a minimum.
     

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