📸 Skai Chan Photography

19 Things to Avoid When Attending an Event

Hey there, I'm your go-to event photographer and I've been fortunate to capture a wide array of memorable moments throughout my career. Whether it's a grand corporate affair, an intimate private gathering or a lively community celebration, I've had the privilege of documenting them all. From the joyous union of weddings to the cake-covered fun of birthday parties, I've seen it all through the lens of my camera.

Now, let me share a little insider's insight with you. Most of the guests I've encountered on this incredible journey have been nothing short of amazing. They're friendly, thoughtful and incredibly respectful. They understand the significance of the moments I'm there to capture, and they make my job an absolute joy.

However, in the world of event photography, there have been a few instances where I've encountered some challenging guests. Now, let me be clear, I genuinely appreciate the vibrant energy that guests bring to an event but in some cases, certain behaviours can impact the photography experience.

That's why I've put together this list of things that guests should avoid doing. It's not about laying down rules or dampening the spirit of the celebration. It's about ensuring that your event photography turns out as spectacular as the day itself. After all, no one wants to miss out on those perfect photo opportunities that make memories last a lifetime. So, let's dive in and explore how we can work together to make every event truly picture-perfect.

Here are things that guests should avoid doing to ensure they don't inadvertently affect the official photographer at an event:

  1. Obstructing the photographer's view: This occurs when guests unintentionally or deliberately block the photographer's line of sight to the subject or the scene. It disrupts the photographer's ability to capture clear and unobstructed shots. Guests should be aware of their position about the photographer's viewfinder and avoid walking in and out of the frame during important moments, which can cause disruptions in the photographer's carefully composed shots.
  2. Holding personal mobile devices in the line of sight: Guests who hold their smartphones or cameras in the photographer's line of sight can obstruct the photographer's view and affect the quality of their shots. Guests must be mindful of where they position their devices to avoid inadvertently appearing in the photographer's photos or casting shadows that affect the lighting.
  3. Blocking pathways or impeding the photographer's movement: Guests should be aware of the photographer's need for mobility during an event. Blocking pathways or key areas, including stages or important event areas, can hinder the photographer's ability to move freely and capture essential shots. Additionally, leaving personal belongings in areas that might obstruct the photographer's movement can lead to logistical challenges.
  4. Touching or tampering with the photographer's equipment: It's crucial for guests not to touch or tamper with the photographer's camera equipment or accessories. These devices are finely tuned for the specific event and settings, and any interference can disrupt the photographer's workflow and result in suboptimal shots.
  5. Excessive directing other guests: While some direction during group photos is helpful, excessive directing by guests on how others should pose for the official photographer can create confusion and disrupt the photographer's flow. The photographer is experienced in guiding the subjects to achieve the desired shots, and multiple voices can lead to a lack of coordination.
  6. Using personal flash or drones: Using personal flash or drones can interfere with the official photographer's work. Personal flash may disrupt the photographer's carefully planned lighting setup, while personal drones or aerial devices can inadvertently appear in the photographer's shots, causing distractions and obstructing clear photos.
  7. Constantly standing in front of the camera or photobombing shots: Guests who frequently stand in front of the camera, intentionally photobombing shots or blocking the subject matter, disrupt the composition and can prevent the photographer from capturing essential moments. This behaviour affects the overall quality of the photos.
  8. Distracting or disruptive behaviour during key moments: Engaging in distracting or disruptive behaviour during critical moments, such as speeches or ceremonies, can divert attention from the official photographer and cause them to miss crucial shots. Guests should be mindful of their behaviour during these important times.
  9. Disabling the Official Camera: Requesting the photographer to use their phones for casual shots during the event can hinder the professional's ability to capture high-quality images with his designated camera. This can impact the overall quality of the event documentation and limit the photographer's capacity to focus on key moments.
  10. Excessive requests to the official photographer: Constantly requesting the official photographer's attention, asking for specific photos or requesting retakes can interrupt their workflow and disrupt their ability to capture spontaneous moments. Guests should trust the photographer's expertise and allow them to work without constant interference.
  11. On-the-Spot Photo Checks: Asking the photographer to review and share photos in real-time during the event can be time-consuming and distracting. This practice diverts the photographer's attention away from their primary role of capturing the unfolding moments. It's advisable to wait until after the event for a comprehensive review to ensure the photographer remains fully engaged in his craft.
  12. Interrupting the photographer: Guests should avoid interrupting the photographer while they are engaged in capturing important shots. This behaviour can lead to missed moments and affect the quality of the photos.
  13. Group Photos During Performances: Requesting group photos when performers are on stage can be perceived as disrespectful to the artists. It implies a lack of interest in the live performance and can be disruptive to both the photographer and the performers. To maintain a respectful atmosphere, it's recommended to save group photos for appropriate intervals, allowing everyone to fully enjoy and appreciate the scheduled performances without interruptions.
  14. Bringing additional lighting equipment: Guests should avoid bringing additional lighting equipment that may interfere with the official photographer's lighting setup. Excessive equipment can create unwanted shadows, affect the quality of the photos, and disrupt the photographer's workflow.
  15. Uncooperative or unresponsive behaviour: Guests should be cooperative and responsive to the photographer's instructions and cues. Disregarding instructions or the photographer's professional judgment can result in miscommunication and affect the quality of the photos.
  16. Taking group photos without allowing space: When guests take group photos without allowing sufficient space for the official photographer to capture the same shot, it can lead to a lack of coordination and obstruct the photographer's view. Disrupting the flow of the event by taking control of group photos or important moments can cause logistical challenges for the photographer.
  17. Assuming the role of the official photographer: Guests should not assume the role of the official photographer without permission, as it can lead to confusion and disrupt the photographer's workflow. It's essential to respect the photographer's expertise and their role in capturing the event.
  18. Failing to inform preferences: Guests who prefer not to be photographed should inform the photographer to avoid unnecessary shots and respect their privacy.
  19. Requesting for photos directly from the photographer: Guests should approach the host (the photographer's client) directly after the event if they want specific photos, as the photographer's primary role is to capture the event, not handle photo delivery to individual guests.

By keeping these points in mind, guests can ensure a smooth and enjoyable event experience for everyone involved, including the official photographer who is working hard to capture those special moments.

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