Corporate Photography: Setting Up a Formal Photo Booth

Companies use corporate photography for more than advertising their product or service. Formal portraits of company officials may also be taken for their website, quarterly reports or newsletters.

The following are instructions on how to set up a formal photo booth for corporate photography. You will need a digital SLR camera, a tripod, lighting (see below), removable tape, fabric or seamless paper and your laptop.

Step 1: Bring Additional Lighting

Have additional lighting available, as the location where you will be shooting may not be lit well. You can buy or rent a kit that includes a soft box, monolight strobe flash unit, sync cord to attach to your laptop and a safe voltage sync adapter. Once assembled, it is mounted on a light stand. In addition to the kit, you can add individual lights mounted on tripods to counteract any shadows on your subject.

Step 2: Choose the Location

You will be shooting photos at a company's location in either a meeting room or other open space. Choose a well lit area of the room near an outlet to set up.

Step 3: Create a Backdrop

You can create a backdrop with fabric or seamless paper. Fabric will give you a textured effect. You can tape the backdrop to a wall with removable tape or use a background support system or frame that holds up the background material. Choose a simple, single colored background in white or gray for the best results.

Step 4: Booth Set Up

Once the backdrop is up, you can set up the rest of your booth. Three feet in front of the backdrop, use removable tape to mark an "X" on the floor. This mark is where people should pose. You can also place a barstool height chair on the "X" if your subjects will be posed while seating.

About three feet in front of the "X," you will place the soft box and your camera that is mounted on a tripod. Have someone stand on the "X" or sit in the chair to make sure that your placement is correct. If you are using a single additional light, directly line it up with your subject to avoid any shadows.

Step 5: Adjust Camera Settings

Your digital camera settings should be adjusted according to available lighting. It is recommended to manually set your aperture to F8 and your shutter speed to 1/250. Take a few test photos to tweak the aperture for the desired results.

Step 6: Connect Your Laptop

By connecting your camera to your laptop, photos will be displayed on the screen for you to review as they are shot. This also enables you to save the photos to your hard drive rather than using memory cards.

You will connect your camera to your laptop by using a USB cable. Every camera is different, but most have a setting such as PTP (Picture Transfer Protocol) for use with a laptop or computer.

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