Task 5

What are the essential skills for success as an event photographer?

To be a successful event photographer you must:

  • Be organised
  • Be confident
  • Have great communication and people skills
  • Be flexible

What are some essential questions you will need to ask the client before the event?

  • Location
  • Time
  • Date
  • How many images
  • Are the images being published
  • Who are of importance at the event
  • Where I can shoot/cannot shoot

What are some of the technical considerations of shooting in a large, crowded and often dark space?

  •  Can a flash be used
  • White balance
  • Flash for exposure
  • Wide angle lens to fit in a lot of information without taking up too much space

One business model for event photographers is to not charge a fee to the event organisers to shoot, but rather sell images directly to the guests who attend the event (sometimes with a percentage of the sales going back to the organisers). What are some of the advantages to this approach?

It can become quite profitable and great ways to promote your business because people who buy the images may even buy multiple copies resulting in more profit. Selling images directly to the guests is a great way to get exposure because of the face-to-face value and they can show your images to potential future clients.

What are the disadvantages?

  •  You may not sell enough images on the night to cover the cost of the shoot
  • People may not like the images that have been taken resulting in no sale

Consider your workflow that would allow you to sell images directly to guests.

Upon taking the images I would hand out a business card with a website requiring a password to access, the client then can pick and choose the images they want to purchase.

Fast turn around is often the major prerequisite for clients when commissioning an event photographer. What are two reasons a client might request images before or immediately after the event has finished?

The images could be used as promotional material for the venue or the images could be published for news media.

Consider the workflow you would need to implement to enable you to deliver final images prior to, or immediately after the conclusion of the event?

I would get all the technical aspects of the images right in camera to minimize postproduction. Bring a laptop and have an assistant edit and output the images as I’m shooting, swapping memory cards through the night to maximize workflow.

When shooting for the social pages – as well as for many other events – it is essential that the photographer records the names – and correct spellings – of everyone they photograph. Consider a strategy to ensure all this information is efficiently and accurately recorded for every image.

For a large event I would hire an assistant to record the names of everyone in clear handwriting or on an iPad, then create a workflow template to apply the names to correct images.

Without yours or your client’s knowledge another photographer has also been booked by another organisation taking part in the event. The other photographer is clearly unhappy you are there. What are the reasons you think they might be unhappy?

  • Having multiple photographers will create competition for the best images and most sales.
  • If you are both using flash or lighting there could be technical interference.
  • If one photographer takes a great shot and the other photographer sees they might copy the same techniques and create a similar image
  • Getting in each others way or taking to much time on a single shot.

Consider some strategies for dealing with this situation.

  • Introduce yourself
  • Create a friendly working relationship
  • Find out where/what they will be shooting and try not to interfere with each other’s work

Now you have considered some of the challenges of event photography, consider the minimum equipment requirements for success in this field.

  • Camera body and maybe backup depending on the size of the shoot
  • A range of lens with different focal lengths
  • Tripod or monopod if need be
  • Flash or lighting equipment and accessories such as soft boxes and light stands
  • Spare batteries
  • Spare memory cards
  • Laptop
  • Notepad/iPad
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