Event pho­tog­ra­phy

Fast and un­pre­dictable but lots of fun, event pho­tog­ra­phy could be per­fect for you if you’re good at work­ing un­der pres­sure…

Digital Camera World - - COVER STORY -

EVENT pho­tog­ra­phy is a broad um­brella term that en­com­passes many

dif­fer­ent gen­res. From sports pho­tog­ra­phy or shoot­ing live mu­sic to fun runs or car shows, events are any­thing where you, the pho­tog­ra­pher, are not in com­plete con­trol of pro­ceed­ings.

Event pho­tog­ra­phy can be es­pe­cially fruit­ful for any­one wish­ing to make money from their camera on a part-time ba­sis, be­cause the ma­jor­ity of events are ei­ther at week­ends or in evenings. Here are some im­por­tant things you need to know about this ex­cit­ing genre of pho­tog­ra­phy...

1 Get­ting ac­cess

The com­mon fac­tor in all event pho­tog­ra­phy is your abil­ity to get ac­cess to the event in the first place. This ac­cess gives you per­mis­sion to pho­to­graph the event and, in the ma­jor­ity of cases, it gets you ac­cess to spe­cial ar­eas the public are re­stricted from – closer to the foot­ball pitch in sports pho­tog­ra­phy, or in the pit in front of a live mu­sic stage.

Shar­ing your port­fo­lio with the or­gan­is­ers is a good way to start a con­ver­sa­tion, build re­la­tion­ships and ul­ti­mately se­cure ac­cess. The abil­ity to work un­su­per­vised and un­der pres­sure is a must for those wish­ing to take on event pho­tog­ra­phy.

2 Long hours

Event pho­tog­ra­phy can be a de­mand­ing ac­tiv­ity that re­quires long hours and plenty of car­ry­ing gear around, so a de­cent de­gree of fit­ness is re­quired. Black-tie events run along into the night, and sports events can re­quire you to ar­rive well be­fore the sched­ule starts mean­ing early starts.

3 Ex­tra profit

Event pho­tog­ra­phy of­fers those look­ing to make money from their cam­eras a unique op­por­tu­nity to boost prof­its even fur­ther. Whether it’s guests at a for­mal busi­ness din­ner or par­tic­i­pants at a sports event, ev­ery­body likes to buy a print to re­mem­ber the oc­ca­sion.

A great ad­di­tional ac­tiv­ity is to set up a printer and to turn out prints for pun­ters to buy at the ac­tual event. How­ever, this adds an­other layer of com­pli­ca­tion and will re­quire you to work su­per-fast to get im­ages print-ready in a small win­dow of time. It can be help­ful to pay some­one for a lit­tle ex­tra help to set up the printer and deal with cus­tomers while you fo­cus on quickly pro­cess­ing im­ages.


Event pho­tog­ra­phers will of­ten have to edit on the move. While most pho­tog­ra­phers have the lux­ury of head­ing back to the of­fice, putting the ket­tle on and tak­ing their time over ed­its, those shoot­ing live events of­ten need to turn im­ages around in hours, if not min­utes. This re­quires a strong knowl­edge of not only Light­room and Pho­to­shop, but also know­ing how to use soft­ware to quickly send large amounts of data, such as FTP clients.

Up­grad­ing your lap­top and other soft­ware es­sen­tials should be a pri­or­ity. Many event pho­tog­ra­phers will also shoot JPEGs to speed up work­flow.

Abo ve If you’re strug­gling to get ac­cess, fresh­en­ing up your port­fo­lio could prove a fast track to get­ting a press pass. Try ap­proach­ing web­sites who will be able to get you ac­cess to events.

Abo ve Event pho­tog­ra­phy means work­ing around peo­ple you’re not fa­mil­iar with. Li­a­bil­ity in­sur­ance is a must for this genre. Some events may also take you abroad, so check that your in­sur­ance cov­ers you.

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