What makes great event photography?
Ok, so you've been tasked with hiring a photographer for your next event or global conference and you are asking yourself what makes great event photography.
Before we jump in I want you to quickly relive your commute to work this morning. We live in a colourful, buzzing and full on world that demands our attention in every space. Can you remember any ads and messages that popped out at you? Probably not. But I think it's important to recognise there is still a need for messages. And you may just have a task of hiring a photographer because you need some images for your newsletter. But just imagine if you hired a photographer that had vision and knew how to connect with your company, surely it'll make you look good. Who doesn't want that? Hello promotion!
So let me highlight 4 areas which can take event photography to the next level
1. Storytelling - event photography that has a beginning, middle and end.
Connecting with your colleagues, guests and just people in general should be the priority of any objective. Without connecting with an audience, what do you have? You want people to pay attention. Imagine your next event, whether it is a charity event raising money for awareness through a big corporate day out or a keynote business presentation. The photographer is able to start collecting images that tell the story of the day. The beginning may involve your location , environment and capturing details of branding, handouts and setups. The middle will be the heart of the event. Photographing the speakers, photographing the speakers interacting with guests, colleagues enjoying that networking dinner. And the end will be a summary and round up of the day.
Like any great film, television series and art we can connect with our audience through delivery images that are emotive. This really separates the average photographer from a great photographer who is constantly looking for an angle, or waiting for a moment that is about to happen. Being ready to photograph key moments in a keynote. Identifying moments during teambuilding workshops that are genuine reactions. And these really are the most powerful images that stand out, and back up our earlier point of storytelling.
You might not even subconsciously understand why you like one photograph over another. Like any piece of work, you'll have a gut reaction. Great event photography is the same. And photographers who know their composition just do this without you even realising. Especially with event photography as it is important to deliver photographs that have negative space in its composition, allowing room for titles and additional text. This is just one compositional technique. Others include the rule of thirds and leading lines. All of which are designed to guide the viewer and give a sense of balance in an image. So instead of providing a series of images of your presenter on stage at a business conference with them in the middle of the picture, a great event photographer will allow for variation and options.