Holiday event food station photo by Leblond Studio Inc.

Brief your event photographer in less than 30 seconds

It’s ramp up time for event planners these days, with corporate holiday parties about to hit the city. Some info was exchanged during the booking process and you may have given lots, some, or bare bones info to your photographer at this point. Now that event day is around the corner, here’s how to get him or her set up for success very quickly.

1. Start and end time

By this I mean, what time does the event start and end, AND what time does your photographer start and end. Avoid confusion by mentioning both. Agree as well as on the time of arrival of your photographer. Typically our team arrives 15 minutes before start, unless we have lighting gear to set up in which case we’ll be there up to 1 hour early. This is set up time and so if you’d like to meet with the photo team, mention it so that time can be allocated.

2. Venue name and address

Some hotels for example may have more than one location (downtown, by the airport, etc) and so avoid costly mistakes by confirming the address.

3. Dress code

Once you are confident that your photo team knows where and when to show up, tell them how to show up. At times, it’s pretty obvious such as a Stampede party or a fundraising gala. While the all black is usually a safe default, it can really make us stick out in some situations. It’s very awkward to show up in black gala wear only to realize that everyone is in yoga pants, in jeans and glitters (not uncommon in Calgary), or leather and chains (ok that would be a fun holiday party!). The goal is for us to blend in with the guests, and at the same time, look like we’re part of your team.

4. Your top photo priority

We know that you’d love everything photographed and we’ll aim for that, but giving us your top priority will help us make the right decision when many things are happening at once. Do you care most about guests, décor, food or entertainment? It also helps to know if you’re hiring us for your own marketing or award submissions, or if the client is paying the bill.

5. What is the event about and who’s the client?

Is it a celebration for employees, clients, a marketing launch, or something else. Knowing the purpose of the event will help us understand what elements are most important and better tell the story.

Smarty-pants move: If you have a very detailed production schedule, points 1, 2 and 5 are likely listed there already. Share that document which you’ve already tweaked for hours and you’ll just need to confirm dress code and your photo priority! Done!

Photos in this post are from a corporate holiday event produced by e=mc² events.

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