Photo courtesy of Azure Photography
One of those Pinterest ideas that we see pop up pretty frequently is a DIY photo booth. While this can be a money saving option, it definitely requires a little research and some prep time before your wedding. See below for some tips and tricks!
This is the piece that gets everyone’s creative juices flowing! Generally speaking, most folks use some sort of backdrop here, but you can also use whatever happens to be around you outside or in your venue as a background. You’ll want your background to be at least 6 feet tall by 4 feet wide. If using a backdrop, think about the kind of look you prefer. Do you want something sparkly? Something vintage? Something floral? Something handmade? The sky’s the limit! Just make sure to think about the following points of potential pain:
- Leave enough time to craft or purchase the backdrop items you need! Sometimes, especially with fresh floral backdrops, you or an appointed person will need to string the backdrop elements together on site on the wedding day, so make sure you have ample time for both set up and prep. Also consider how to best transport it, especially if it’s made of paper or strung items.
- How will the backdrop be hung? Most venues don’t allow the kind of additions to the wall that will hold up a heavy backdrop, so you may need to get crafty with PVC pipes or invest in a stand, like this one.
Location and Lighting
The number one thing you can do to make your photo booth photos great is to provide enough lighting! You can go simple, like with a floor lamp on clearance with some bright daylight style bulbs, or more professional, like with a spotlight and photographer’s umbrella. Anything more than a camera flash will help tons and tons! Also, be sure there’s enough room for everyone to have fun in front of the camera, without the line or the props table spilling into your photo frame. Generally, plan on a 10′ by 10′ space that’s not in the middle of any significant traffic patterns.
Okay, this is where it gets tricky. You can use an actual, honest-to-God camera on a tripod for this – especially if you have one with a remote shutter release. But! There are very few cameras out there with the capability to wirelessly connect to a printer. If you choose a camera, you may need to use a laptop to periodically download the photos and print from a connected printer. You can also use an iPod on a tripod (hehe), but you’ll need a mount and possibly an app to connect to a printer – check out Simple Booth for some ideas on how to do that. You can also have folks use their own devices and post them on Instagram with the wedding hashtag (otherwise, you’ll never see all the photos! Boo!). There are a few printers out there that connect to wireless devices, like this one, for photo printing on site, or your guests can go crazy printing from Instagram via one of the many online sources after the wedding.
Remember to bring:
- Extra batteries and/or charging cords for all tech
- Extra memory cards if using a camera
- Lots and lots of film for the printer
- If possible, also mark the floor where the tripod should go or someone should stand to frame the photo, just incase things move around.
Buy them, make them, rent them! Whatever brings your vision to life! If you want to try and create an album on site, be sure to bring that along with glue sticks and/or tape, pens, and plenty of blank album pages.