Jamie C.


6 Tips to Succesfully Shooting an Event

Event photographers, get ready!


Concerts, weddings, conventions, you name it- there’s probably someone with a camera running around. And if you’re the one running around with the camera, you know how hectic events can be. Between food vendors, performers, and guests, there is SO much to take in and take pictures of. We won’t blame you for being overwhelmed, but being as prepared as possible will get you the best shots for both you and your client, so here are ten tips to set you up for success at your next event. 

1) Scouting the Area

 If you’re able to, see if you can access the venue or area that you’ll be shooting in a few days earlier, or even just a couple hours. Getting a feel of the surroundings you’ll be shooting in will prevent you from struggling to find the best spots to shoot and help you save time since you’ll know exactly where to go. You might even be able to get an idea of the lighting and sound situation (for all you videographers out there). 

2) Prepping Your Gear

This might be personal experience, but first things first- make sure you have extra batteries and SD cards. From there, everything else. If you’re going to be up close and personal, you want to have the right lens for that. And the opposite, if you’re going into a situation where you’ll be relying on zoom, make sure you’re not shooting with a prime lens. And you can’t forget about lighting! Whether it’s strobe or continuous (or both) that you need, make sure you’re well equipped for all situations. 

3) Planning Your Shots

Come up with a shot list so you’re not wandering aimlessly! If you’re unable to visit the venue beforehand, do a little bit of research and get inspired by some popular shots for the type of event you’re shooting. If you’re able to scout the area beforehand, all that preparation comes down to this as well. Especially since you have an idea of what you’ll be working with on the day of the event, keeping in mind what kind of shots you can aim for the day makes things a lot easier. 

4) Communication is Key

 Talk to the event organizer or the client you’re shooting for. Certain events have regulations that you may want to know, and you don’t want to be somewhere you shouldn’t be. It may also be helpful to ensure that your creative vision aligns with the client’s as well. They might also be able to give you some tips and tricks, tell you the dos and don’ts, or even access to certain areas so that you’re able to get certain shots.

5) Format It Correctly!

When it comes down to actually shooting, make sure you’re shooting in RAW. At events, people are moving at every second and something is always happening. The in the moment shots can be a split second decision, and you might not always have the time to adjust your settings. Shooting in RAW will give you a bit of leverage during editing so that you can recover or enhance those shots! 

6) Go, Go, Go!

With that being said, make sure you’re on high alert! A moment doesn’t last forever, and chances are, they’ll be gone once you blink. Or in a photographer’s case, once the shutter goes off. So be ready to take intentional shots that can capture the goal that your client is going for or the essence of the event! And make sure you’re including a little bit of everything- the guests, the main attraction, and even the decor for b-roll!

Again, shooting events can be a whole lot at once when you’re a one man show. But you’ll get some of the most unique and emotional shots by being a part of it, and the results are quite rewarding! Hopefully, these six tips gave you a bit of insight as to what you should prepare and expect for the day of. Just remember to always have a backup plan and to think on your feet, and you should be just fine!