In this post, I’ll share some useful tips on how to soon effectively be the fabled paparazzi in parties, gatherings, and events. I’ve used every bit of these before and I reckon other (aspiring LOL) Paparazzi got-to-bes can also find them useful.
As you may already know, a cam phone/point & shoot (P&S) photographer’s limitation is greatly influenced by how well he can muster his fear/insecurity of being a mere P&S photographer among the throes of big camera wielding others. The truth is, with any camera, so long as you’ve come to accept the limits of its capabilities, working with and maximizing what you have coupled with practice and talent will make you a solid force to beat in capturing countless beautiful shots anywhere.
No optical zoom? Get close. No, closer. Got the point?
The following are simple rules we must always be conscious about when taking photos.
Say please (aka request nicely). We’ve all been on the receiving end of multiple flashing xenons but not most of us had been requested to pose for camera-bearing-strangers, more so amateur-looking strangers holding paltry looking cam phones. The key to having the shot that matters is how we request our subjects to pose while we compose our shot. Request for their time with sincerity in the tone of your voice, all the while maintaining the stance of a seasoned/confident genius. Enough confidence should be in check. It would greatly help if you can engage your would-be subject in small talk/conversation first but not all occasions can afford you time to establish rapport. This takes us back to banking on the request card for luck at a shot or two. You can measure your success by how nice the smiles or poses are that you’ve managed to capture afterwards.
Look presentable (aka smell nice, too). If shabbily dressed photographers are to be banned, that could well render 80% of all professional shooters jobless. Exerting a little more effort to set yourself apart will give you an edge as a photographer, in real life, at work, and in public. It’s one thing to be present and another to actually be part of a gathering so, since we are in the topic of looking presentable, we should always always stick with the prescribed dress code. If skeptikal, remember the rule “better over than under dressed.” Call it superficial but being identified as well-dressed whenever will not only be a plus on your reputation as being always well-made, your overall photographer’s fame would greatly benefit as well. Before you know it, you’ve already made an investment to more event media passes for the future.
Only share beautiful photos (aka don’t be an ass and publish everything you took). This one’s a common weakness: quantity versus quality. Think about it. When there’s a lot to look at with not much variation, most would often lose interest. The trick is to choose the best from similar shots and keep the rest. Also, when debating whether or not to show (or, in the case of publishing on the internet, upload) a unique but awkward/blurred/overexposed/grainy shot, the rule is, if it can’t be saved, keep it. One more thing, we can be biased with the opinion we have of our shots, beauty-wise, but are they as breathtaking/amazing/worth the look in the eyes of your public? We can never truly know until we’ve asked other people’s opinion. If you can, have peers critique your shots. Better yet, have professionals see them. If they are honest enough to share with you their observations, jot them down and learn to accept these flaws. Better yet, correct them. A crushed ego today will better us in the future.
If our goal is to document our lives in photos, by all means, archive everything we take on the web. After all, to a certain extent, photography for most is still as personal as taking photos of their clique and nothing more. To claim to have covered an event should show a more or less varied snap shot at different points in time of different happenings/people/things that are in it. In the first example, your potential audience could only be your peers. For the latter, however, your viewers could be limitless. Earlier on, decide what you will be for an event: clique-centric or total chronicler.
That’s it for now. I hope you have found these insightful. I’ll share more tips with you soon!