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  • Writer's pictureChickster

12 Resolutions of New Year’s: January

Updated: Feb 3

By Kelly

This year, I’m doing one resolution a month to challenge myself, and I just tackled January’s: Run my first Photo Booth.

I’ve always wanted to host a Photo Booth, so I gifted one to a friend’s bridal shower, and it was a hit.

But I definitely learned a few things along the way, so I wrote an article about it, because I found little information about how to run one online. So I’m writing the article I wish I found before my attempt.

What I learned:

  • Arrive an hour early to set-up: I finished just as the first guest arrived, so giving yourself an hour and a half wouldn’t be crazy.

  • Get an adjustable background holder: 10-foot backgrounds are too wide for the average living room, so I’m glad I was able to remove a whole foot.

  • Use a non-party room to stash all your equipment bags: I had so much stuff!

  • Use sandbags on all stands: I used four, since I had background and light stands.

  • Don’t iron your background: You can’t tell in pictures if the backdrop is wrinkled.

  • Photograph the background with no one in front of it: This makes it easy to replace your green screen with your backdrop later (like to photoshop in celebrities.)

  • Travel lite on the props: The themed headbands and glasses got worn, but the wigs, hats, wings and other costume stuff I brought did not.

  • Don’t bring just-in-case beauty supplies: The brushes, mirrors, hair spray and body glitter did not get used. (These ladies were already dressed to the nines.)

  • Have a sign-up sheet: Gather names, emails and outfit colors, so you know where to send what.

  • Use a zoom or prime lens: Group sizes constantly change, so use a zoom lens if there’s not enough space to move your tripod. If you can move your tripod, use a prime lens for better images.

  • Use a higher ISO or an external flash: One helps avoid editing out shine on skin or glasses later, while the other creates better lighting and less photo grain. I picked better lighting.

  • Use mobile lights: I had one close, diffused wand light and one pulled-back, bare wand light.

  • Have extension cords ready: Mobile lights run out of batteries in two to three hours. (I always have two in my bag.)

  • Use just one background: Having both a backdrop and a green screen was too much. Switching set-ups and taking another round of pictures devoted too much of the shower’s time to pictures.

  • Use Lightroom to edit photos: It’s quicker for editing large amounts of photos, though you’ll still need Photoshop to remove backgrounds.

  • Plan for green-screen photos to double editing time: Thankfulky, this shower took place over a three-day weekend.

And that’s it! If you ever host a Photo Booth, I hope this post gives you a head start!

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