Tips for Event Photography Coverage

A great opportunity for photographers is event photography. Sometimes, people want to capture a big personal day, and other times they may want to record a sporting event. There are various events people want to guarantee that they get adequately recorded, and, if you’ve been called in for a big event shoot, here are a few tips to cover the event the right way. 

Know What They Want

You should know what the desired outcome of the shoot is. For an anniversary, it may be the toasts people give. For a wedding, it’s probably the whole event in general, and 'the kiss’ and the ring ceremony in particular. Make sure you know what the client wants, and be sure to deliver. If you are the client, define in your own mind exactly what you want.  In either case, the simplest way of ascertaining what the client wants is to ask, “What do you want?” It will clear up any questions before it’s too late. Make sure that whatever it is, is firmly planted in your mind before you go on.
 
Do Your Homework

Make certain you know the ins and outs of the particular event you're shooting. There’s a big difference between photographing a wedding and shooting a football game. For sentimental events, like weddings or anniversaries, usually the pace is a bit slower, and you’ll probably have a chance to move around more smoothly, not harried (but be ready!) There will be times when you get one shot at ‘the moment’ (the first kiss at a wedding, for instance,) but most ‘moments’ will come smoothly (and often-times there will be a schedule).

Know the schedule. For a sporting event, there are no ‘re-do’s’ – if you miss the game-winning goal, you’ve missed it, and that may be the most important thing you were supposed to get! Be familiar with the sport; it will let you know when you get breaks.

Prepare

Check out the venue for the event before the day of the shoot. If you’re outdoors with a sports competition, you probably won’t have access to more power – but you may. You should know beforehand. Back in the day, you’d make certain that you had enough rolls of film and that they were the right speed. Now, you should prepare with adequate memory for your shots. If you run ‘rapid fire,’ you’ll probably go through more memory. If your best shots are going to be from a distance, be sure to pack the right length lenses.

Cover It
 
There are times when the events only come along once, and for those special moments, it may be worth considering bringing on a second cameraman. If you’re confident in your own abilities, you may be able to cover it yourself (however, be honest when you assess this, as, if you can’t cover it yourself, you will never get the moments back.) Take a look at the venue – a field, a church, a reception area – and check out how you will make your way around it.

Ultimately, it comes down to being ready. Once you know what is desired, get ready for it and do your best!