8 Do’s For Event Planners: What To Communicate To Your Event Photographer

Providing clear instructions to your event photographer will set clear expectations for what final images will be delivered. That stellar set of final images is going to be valuable post-event marketing asset gold. Here Are 8 DO’s To Communicate To Your Event Photographer.

1. KNOW HOW THE FINAL IMAGES WILL BE USED   

Whether your photos will be used for various social media platforms, banners, post-event recaps, personal and agency portfolios, and/or print, let your photographer know. Having this pertinent information allows them to determine if they’ll need to take wider shots to provide negative space for logos or text or to compose the shots to fill the entire frame of the photo to show detail or emphasize a particular person or products, etc.  

2. DETERMINE WHAT TYPE OF PHOTOS YOU WILL NEED   

Knowing how the final images will be used helps to determine what kind of shots you will need. Based on your end goal…

  • Do you need shots of attendees posed, candid, or both? 
  • Do you need shots that are close-ups, wide, or both? 
  • Do you need photos of guests waiting in line to check-in? 
  • Do you need beauty shot of products? 
  • Will there be interactive displays that you want attendees captured interacting with?
  •  Is it essential to capture staff and vendors in action?

Asking yourself questions along these lines will assist with what information to convey to the event photographer, so they know what moments to look for as they shoot. 

3. SHARE THE DEFINITE DONTS + MUST-HAVES OF WHAT YOU WANT TO SEE IN THE FINAL IMAGES 

Be clear with your photographer about what they should not photograph. For instance, some clients will only want to see a specific demographic reflected. In contrast, some clients will wish to showcase a very diverse demographic. Also, be clear about your must-have shots, i.e., shots of the influencers posed in front of the step-n-repeat, attendees with the branded cookies in hand, attendees interacting with the touch wall, the brand ambassadors handing goody bags to the guest, etc.

4. PROVIDE INFORMATION ON UNIQUE FEATURES OF THE EVENT+ VENUE

Let your photographer know anything unique to the event or venue. For instance, list out any interactive or branded areas of the footprint or event space that should be photographed. That could include signage, gift bags, items in the gift bags, step-and-repeats, or anything else you spent time customizing. Anything custom or branded is essential to your event story, and it should be captured by the photographer.

The photographer will need to know about event elements, layout, and lighting to ensure they bring the correct equipment. For example, if you have a quiet room at the event where attendees will be participating in yoga, the photographer needs to know they must have the ability to shoot in silent mode without the shutter clicking sound to avoid disrupting the event. If your event has a speaker on a stage that will be far away or high up on a platform, the photographer will need to know to bring a lens that reaches far away. Another example is if the venue lighting will be very dark, the photographer then knows to bring the correct lighting and light modifiers with them to make your event look it’s best on camera. Some event venues will require the photographer to have (COI ) Certificate of Insurance for the day of your event. COI protects the venue from being liable to any injury or damage. Let the photographer know as soon as possible, so they can obtain it, which in some cases can take at least 24 hours. 

Since dress attire is unique to every event, do let your photographer know if it is a dressier event, because no one likes to feel under or inappropriately dressed. Also, your photographer is a representation of you and the client while on-site; they should look the part. Be sure that the photographer knows not to wear any competitor brands, for example, wearing an Adidas shirt at a Nike event would be pretty cringe-worthy.

5. CREATE A SHOT LIST 

Your shot list should be in an easy-to-read format that your photographer can glance at quickly. It’s a good idea to also include a run-of-show, which is the timeline of scheduled events set to take place. The document generally includes times and locations of any scheduled product demonstrations, speakers, DJs, influencers, celebrities, giveaways, production notes, etc. These extra details help the photographer know when and where to be before important events take place so they can capture the shots you need.

You and your Photographer should go through your vision for the final images and event logistics. If you aren’t precisely sure of all the types of photos you need, be sure to communicate that with your photographer so you can both work together to come up with a game plan. Pointing out images that you like from the photographer’s own portfolio can give them a good idea of what style and type of photos you are seeking. 

6. DETERMINE THE DEADLINE FOR THE FINAL IMAGES 

Your photographer should be aware of when you expect the images post-event so they can allow themselves the time to upload, cull through, edit, organize, and deliver them to you. It should be discussed in advance if you need photos in real-time or during the event for pr and social media posts. Provided photos that fast will require a camera with wi-fi capabilities and/or an assistant who will work behind the scenes getting the images to you so your photographer can continue to photograph the event uninterrupted. 

7. COMMUNICATE ANY CHANGES + SURPRISES

Your photographer is an extension of your team, and they need to be informed right away if any changes or surprises are happening so they can be in place beforehand, with the correct lens and camera settings to beautifully and creatively capture the moment. At larger events, consider adding your photographer to your production text list to make communicating during the event quicker and easier.

8. ALLOW YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER TO CREATE 

Provide clear direction with room for allowing for creative freedom. The previous 8 tips really boil down to informing your photographer of your event 5 W’s and H- Who, What, Where, When, and How’s. Armed with this knowledge, your photographer can go forth photographing your event with purpose and ease. You have chosen your photographer based on their creative talents and know-how, trust they will create amazing images for you. 





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Photos By Chernise is a Chicago-based event photography service that photographs brand experiences. Showcase your events with outstanding images of brand ambassadors, staff in action, consumer interactions, performances, speakers, presentations, decor, locations, vendors, and any of the other pieces of the puzzle that make your event unique! 

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