October 30, 2013

9 True Stories That Prove The Importance Of Booking The Right Photographer For Your Event

Devices that were originally meant to enable simple verbal communication between two people over a long distance now come casually equipped with 41-mega-pixel image sensors. That’s just how things are. Today, everyone’s got a fancy camera.

So, finding someone to take a few decent pictures at your event should be a doddle, right? Well…

We’re all after that comprehensive collection of crisp, well-composed photos that truly do our event justice and capture the success we know it was. In fact, with the social-sharing crazy ways of the world now, booking your photographer is as integral to the planning process as ordering the catering or arranging sufficient security for the door.

Unfortunately, it turns out there are a number of eventualities you probably never even considered that are worth bearing in mind when booking in that photographer. Some are quite gobsmacking, but we’ve compiled this list based on real anecdotes provided by members of a group on Linkedin.

Beware of photographers who:

1. Flirt with your guests and take personal pictures of them, entirely off brief.

2. Take pictures of the wrong things – 100 mouth-watering shots of the food…none of the people.

3. Wear too little (and reveal too much) at an event billed as family-friendly.

4. Get lost in the moment and become too fascinated by proceedings to actually take photos.

5. Arrive without the right equipment and make excuses about coming straight from a different kind of shoot.

6. Bolt on hidden charges for things you didn’t even ask for when it comes to paying the invoice, or claim rights to the pictures.

7. Take so long to return important calls and emails that you end up having to delay your event.

8. BREAK STUFF and indulge overtly in the delights of the catering.

9. Take their art a bit too seriously and insist on impractical compositions involving stairs and lifts.

A little disconcerting, isn’t it? Hopefully you found these mishaps amusing as well as useful, but the message is certainly clear: just because someone has a website, a portfolio and some gear, you can never be sure of their professionalism on the day.

Diligence is the only way to protect yourself from photographic disasters, so ask your peers for recommendations, meet face-to-face with them to vet, ask for references and follow up, then put everything in writing with as much detail as you can muster and communicate closely throughout the whole period.

Insider tip:
ticketscript’s very own Jay de Kleijn works as a photographer for famed dutch promoter Awakenings – he gave us this additional nugget :

“One thing that’s rather important and is quite often forgotten by clients: make sure you get to know up front how soon the pictures are going to be delivered/published after the shoot. In the event industry where I run my shoots, a lot of clients don’t even bother to ask, it’s just something they come up with after the event.”

Each and every event is unique and you only get a single chance to capture it on film; make sure you’re entrusting the right person with the job.

By Dominick Soar