Tips to Choose Equipment for Graduation Photography

Graduation photography is a tough field to specialize in. Because so many people attending the ceremony bring their own cameras, you need to have an edge over them. That edge is being up close to the get perfect shot of the graduate receiving his diploma. Graduation photography is less about being creative than it is about being a mass producer.

The Strategy

Every shot you shoot will be the same, except for the graduate in the picture. You shoot every single person who is coming up for their diploma, whether they're going to buy photos from you or not. You do this because some people may decide after the ceremony they did not get the shot they wanted, but you did. You also need to have a system so that you know which person is in which shot. It's embarrassing to hand over photos of someone else to a paying customer.

Shooting Equipment

Besides a camera, you need a tripod to make sure the camera is locked off so it can repeat the same shot over and over again. Your tripod should have some range in the height. You also should have a wide variety of lenses. You're not sure where the school will decide to place you, but it will be where it is best for them. So, you need to have the equipment to compensate for any situation that comes up. If you're shots aren't great, then no one will buy them. 

Capturing and Logging

You will definitely need a computer to store and log the photos you'll take. You can use a wifi card or something else to be able transfer the shots to the computer instantly. It would be wise to have an assistant with you on this day to help out because things can get overwhelming very fast. The assistant's job will be to pay attention to the ceremony and crosscheck the graduate with a graduation list. As soon as the image is on the computer, the assistant will log the graduate's name into the computer that way you know who is in what shot. Whatever system you develop is your choice, as long as you keep track of names and the order in which the photographs were taken.


You should also have a photo printer on site with you. Most of your customers are from out of town and will be coming to you on impulse. They're going to be out of the area very quickly and don't want to wait for photos. You should be able to give them something to take home that day if you want their business.

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