Working as an event photographer requires you to be personable and dynamic. When photographing an event, whether that be a wedding, concert, party or more, you must understand how to work with your client and create top-notch images.
You may already be rocking the world of event photography. Or you may be interested in breaking into the scene, but aren’t sure how to go about photographing such occasions. In order to help you feel more confident and ready to photograph your next big gig, here are 5 helpful tips for becoming a better event photographer.
Become a Part of the Event, Be Outgoing and Interact With Your Clients
When we talk about event photography, weddings often come to mind. In fact, this is the largest scale of events that require a photographer. They are the most popular and can be a truly lucrative business for photography professionals.
While event photographers may also cover projects such as concerts, birthday parties, reunions and more, photographing weddings can serve as a good basis to apply to these opportunities. At weddings, the photographer must be interested, active and add some fun to the day. Which brings us to our first tip for photographing any occasion – become a part of the event, be outgoing and interact with your clients.
While you were hired for your skills behind the lens, this doesn’t mean you should lack personality in front of it. Working an event requires you to get out there and show your client that you can have a good time with them.
You should aim to talk to your client, their guests and make everyone feel comfortable as you snap images of the party. Be less of a fly on the wall and more of a social butterfly. By allowing your subjects to loosen up and feel comfortable, you will create great pictures that truly showcase the personality of the event.
Capture the Main Event, but Don’t Miss the Little Moments
The second tip for becoming a better event photographer is to capture the main event without missing the little moments. At an event, there is always going to be the focal point you were hired to capture.
At weddings, this the ceremony. At birthday parties, it will be the cutting of the cake. At a concert, it will be the performance. Although these may be the main attractions, they are certainly not the only moment worth capturing.
Make sure that you look for the little, in between moments of each event you photograph. Capture the reactions of the family as their daughter says “I do.” Snap those heartfelt family moments, friends laughing together or when time stands still and the whole crowd sings along. Each event has special moments that compliment one another. In order to create images that tell a story, don’t forget the small aspects that make a big, memorable impact.
Create a Story That is Engaging and Captivating
Our third tip for becoming a better event photographer is to create a story that is engaging and captivating. Any photographer can snap the standard pictures of an event. Yet, a truly great event photographer captures the moments and uses them to tell a story for their client.
As an event photographer, you want to create images that have a cohesive and story-like feel. You want to be on your game for every moment of the event, ready to capture any and every detail for your client. In fact, in many situations – you will need to look outside your client for elements to add to your story.
This means that you should use the rest of the guests at the event to help add to the overall storyline you are aiming to create. At a wedding, photograph the bride and groom. But, also find the moments that highlight the bridal party, the parents of the couple and even the guests who may be dominating the dance floor.
A good event photographer will provide their client with their ideal images. And, they will go the extra step to capture more moments that will make the entire event, a party to remember.
Showcase the Excitement and Enjoyment Through Candid Expression
The fourth tip for becoming a better event photographer is to showcase the excitement and enjoyment through candid expression. Let’s face it, no one really loves posed photographs. They often turn out pretty bland, boring and even awkward.
Instead of forcing your subjects to act a certain way, encourage them to be themselves. Give them a feeling of comfort and security, which will allow them to open up in front of the lens. The best way to do this is to try to create images that feel authentic and candid.
This technique also applies to the rest of the party, not just your main subjects. Instead of telling everyone to smile and pose, catch them at their happiest moments. Photograph your subjects while they talk, dance and laugh. Be able to show how much they are enjoying the event.
The mark of a great event photographer, is one who creates images that make you feel something. By capturing candid expressions that show us excitement and enjoyment, your client will look back at their images with content knowing that their guests had a truly fun time at their event.
Use Unique Composition and Framing to Give Different Visual Perspectives
The fifth and final tip for becoming a better event photographer is to use unique composition and framing to give different visual perspectives. While you may not think so, event photography can be as creative and artistic as any other form of photographic expression.
Just because you may be photographing an event, doesn’t mean your images need to be trite and boring. Instead, think of different ways to compose and photograph your subjects to create a fresh, dynamic perspective.
For instance, you could change your viewpoint. Find a higher vantage point and create images from overhead. Or use selective focusing to create a more artistic effect. Place your focus on your subject, while blurring out surrounding elements within your frame. You can even consider using props to shoot through for colored and visual effects. For example, placing lights, filters or color blocks over your lens for added flare.
Whichever way you decide to photograph your event, make sure it is creative, dynamic and unique as your style. The best way to build your repertoire and profession as an event photographer is to offer an experience that is different from the competition. Set yourself apart and clients will hire you for your creative vision.
In all, becoming a better event photographer can be achieved through a few simple steps. Being outgoing, capturing the little moments, creating a story, adding candid expression and changing up your viewpoint, are simple and effective ways to distinguish yourself as a truly great event photographer.