Capturing a Party’s Essence

Special events are anxiety inducing tasks in and of themselves, worrying about the food, decorations, and entertainment are just one of the things that parties and special events usually weigh heavily on the host.  Typically those things are well prepared for in advance and when the day comes pass by in a blur with nothing left to show for it in the end.  One way to keep some of those events in the collective memory is to make sure that photography is incorporated to make those memories last.  It is also a great way to make sure your guests appreciate all the effort that goes into those events. 

Whether you share the photos through Whatsapp the same night, or print them out immediately at the even to give them away as keepsakes – photos will make sure your event is not forgotten after all the effort that goes into them.  Having said that stale and formal photography is the usually how those moments are captured.  But I find to really capture the essence of the event and the feeling will take some creative, and unconventional thinking.  Typically a professional photographer is the professional you call to make sure those emotional moments are captured, but for lesser events (those outside a wedding) can be done is you take a couple of points into consideration.

  • If you can assign one reliable and creative person to either be the main photographer (share with tem these points) or to support you in case you have to leave a few moments to make sure other matters are taken care of.
  • Take photos of the food, setting and decorations before the guest arrive.
  • Candlelight gives amazing effect in photos, so if you can incorporate it as well as other unique lighting throughout your space for different photo effects, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
  • Make sure your equipment is charged with a back up just in case, and have it with you at all times for those informal moments.
  • Speaking of informal moments, do not shy away from taking trivial and what you might consider unnecessary photos of people reacting and engaging naturally – those end up being the most intimate moments you capture that give a true sense of the event.
  • Minimize the number of people in a photo, having large groups is great for reference, but for emotive and special photos make sure you keep the number of subjects limited for a more intimate feel.
  • Make sure if the event spills outdoors, to have sufficient lighting to capture some outside pictures in the open.
  • It’s always to a good idea to capture children in a group with other kids for a more playful feel without having them stand up straight for a more formal adult dominated photo.  Similarly pets should be grouped together for more fun and informal photos rather than mixing them up with other groups.
  • Avoid flash as much as possible and stick to the surrounding light, flash gives an artificial sense that is tacky and less dramatic.  In places where you can’t avoid the flash (i.e. at night outdoors) try to be close to nearby artificial light where possible to make the flash less apparent in the picture.
  • Don’t be afraid to capture moments in unexpected weather (rain or snow).
  • And where possible, take zoomed in photos, slightly asymmetrical and from different angles, you’ll be surprised how those three components can completely change the tone of the same photo with the same subjects if done in a slightly different way.

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