What to take for Convention and Event Photography

Photographers shooting trade shows need to know the system. Many trade shows have a lot of Generals wanting to be in charge. Know who your boss is and what position they have in the list. This way if you are authorized to take images and under contract to cover every booth then you know where to refer those not wanting booth images. No problem, speak with xyz if you want off the list. It is not My list…I just do what I ma contracted. This makes things a lot simpler.

  1. What to takeĀ  forĀ Convention and Event Photography
    Step Stool
    Back up equipment
    Double the media expected to use
    Double the batteries expected to use
  2. Storage of Equipment
    Keep it on your person
    Keep in a locked room
    If in a staging room lock case to a desk
  3. Step Ladder
    This is a good option if available but might need prior approval from the convention director. Perfect if you need a higher angle for a grand opening/ribbon cutting. Expect several layers of red tape to secure a ladder and a security person to hold it just in case. I know they are doing it for safety but we are not climbing to the top so not a big risk of falling.
  4. Lens Choice
    Make sure to take a wide lens at least f2.8 and something longer. A 70-200 is always good to have. Keep a backup lens handy, even a cheap 50mm can save the day in case of damage or malfunction.
  5. Backup
    Always backup your media before leaving the event. Then keep the media cards away from the backup just in case something happens. At least one set should be safe. The 20 minutes this takes could save you thousands if a bag is lost or stolen leaving the event.

A few other tips

Make every shot look like a full room. F2.8 helps make the background hard to view and hides an empty room. Make sure to get a few different angles and drag the shutter to capture the room ambiance while brightening the subjects face.

I like to do a quick round to get the CYA shots then go back for more detailed work in case the crown leaves fast. No matter what I fulfilled my part of the contract and have a few required shots. Later I can go back and get detailed or more creative knowing the pressure is off.