It’s a smart move to have a photographer onsite for your event. A picture can convert a thousand people to event attendees—or so the old saying goes.
You can describe the event in as much detail as you want, yet nothing beats having photographic evidence of the awesomeness that was your event. But how do you find the right event photographer for your needs?
This article will go over…
- Why you need an event photographer
- The different kinds of event photographers
- How much money you have to part with
- How to assess whether a photographer’s got the goods or not
- Where to find the best event photographers
- How to communicate and work with them
Pictures, or it didn’t happen!
1. Why you need an event photographer
There are good reasons why a photographer is a good investment for your event. The most obvious one is that you can share magical moments with your guests afterwards.
But there is also a more practical reason for it: Event images are great for marketing. Nothing will help sell your event like images or videos of people having a great time.
You can use the images from your event in your email newsletters, your social media posts, and even for your printed marketing collateral like posters, flyers, banners, and so on.
2. The different types of event photographers
Photography is not just about knowing how to operate a camera. Photographers specialise in different fields just like any other profession. You’ll need the right one for your event.
Here are some of the different types of photographers you’ll come across:
- Wedding photographers
- Corporate photographers
- Food photographers
- Sports photographers
Most photographers will be able to take great pictures. But if you want to get the most bang for your buck, you should choose a photographer that specialises in your type of event.
Tip: Look at the photographer’s website to see which kinds of events they specialise in.
3. How much does an event photographer charge?
World-class professionals come with a world-class price tag, so consider the price before you dive head first into hiring an event photographer.
What’s your budget?
Your event budget is the first thing to consider before setting out to find an event photographer. A good photographer can easily charge £1,000 for a day’s work.
If your budget is stretched, it might be better to look for other solutions. Do you know anyone in your social circle that could give you mates rates on some event photography?
Tip: Read our guide on how to plan and manage your event budget.
Get quotes from multiple photographers
Although good photography warrants a decent wage, you should still take the time to shop around. Ask each shortlisted photographer for a quote, and then compare it with the others.
You should include as many details as possible when you ask for a quote, such as:
- How long you need the photographer for
- Where the event will be
- What the lighting conditions will be
- How many shots you need
- What kinds of shots you want
- How you plan on using the images
Make sure you clarify whether they charge by the hour or per event. They may also need special equipment or an assistant along, both of which can increase the price.
Tip: This guide offers a good idea of the price range for event photographers and other things you might want to take into account.
4. How to evaluate event photographers
It’s always a good idea to do thorough research before you spend money. Photographers are no exception to this rule. Let’s go through some of the indicators of a good event photographer.
Look at the communication channels you can reach the photographers on. Do they have a website? Email? Phone? Social media? The more options you have to reach them, the better.
Check their portfolio to gauge the quality of their work. Focus on the examples that are relevant to your event. Also, look out for how many events they have done in the past.
Reviews and references
Online reviews and personal references are perhaps the best way to evaluate an event photographer. Take some time to scrutinise any negative reviews—they might just be difficult clients.
Tip: If you want to really get into the details, look at this photography evaluation form to see some of the criteria for a good portfolio.
5. Where to find event photographers
The million-pound question is: Where do you find event photographers? Fortunately, they hang out in the same place as most other freelance professionals: online.
A good place to start your search is on one of the many freelance job sites around the web.
Here are some of the most prominent ones:
If you’re not willing to risk taking on a freelance event photographer, then there are dedicated agencies that will curate the best photographers available.
Here’s a handful to get you started:
- Racoon Event Photography
- Event Photos
- London Event Photography
- Add To Event
- The Photo Team
- My Event Photo
- Event Photography Society
6. How to work with event photographers
Once you’ve shortlisted a few good photographers, it’s time to discuss the nitty-gritty of the event. Below are some of the conversations you should have with your candidates.
Both you and your event photographers should manage each others’ expectations right from the get-go. That way, you’re both in a better position to plan the event and evaluate it afterwards.
Here are some of the things you should discuss before hiring the photographer:
- What are the exact deliverables included in the price?
- How often will you be able to reach each other?
- What should the photographer (and assistant) wear during the event?
- What time should they be onsite?
- Are there any particular moments they absolutely have to cover?
- How and when will you receive the photos and/or video?
- Will you have exclusive and unlimited rights to the images?
It’s a good idea to make a checklist of all the questions you have for the photographer before you sign a contract and start working together.
Unless you’re a photographer yourself, chances are you’re not familiar with the equipment. But it can’t hurt to ask if they have everything they need to capture the right moments.
Photographers will typically need separate equipment to work in a low-light setting. They’ll also need specialised cameras to capture objects or people moving at high speeds.
Check their insurance
Anything can happen at an event. Especially if it’s action-packed or there’s alcohol involved. Make sure your event photographer has the proper insurance for their equipment.
Hiring an event photographer requires just as much research and attention to detail as any other member of your event team. Make sure you do your due diligence before signing a contract.
It’s also advisable to brief your event attendees (as well as any speaker and entertainers) about the fact that they’ll be on camera. And it doesn’t hurt to let them know what you intend to do with the images.