I was asked to take photos at an elementary school dance and decided that it could be a fun project if I break outside the norm of what’s expected for the genre. So I set some rules for myself.
1. Photos have to be affordable. I saw the price list of previous photographers who did this and I was astounded by the prices. I felt like these should be priced like an impulse item rather than something that needed to be worked into a family’s monthly budget.
2. Photos have to be fun. We’ve all seen the all too common and boring photos of people standing there looking blankly at the camera.
The dance was fun. The photos should reflect that. My answer: PROPS!
3. Photos should be printed on location. People don’t really want several 8x10s or wallets of the dance photos. So what’s the reason for filling out forms and waiting to get 1 or 2 photos? After doing tons of research and finding a portable photo printer that could print 5x7s and get great photo quality, I ordered it and figured out the best way to get it to print at the dance (the toughest & most time consuming part). More fun for everyone that way.
What I learned: Doing it the old way has to be way easier. Boring photos are easy. Getting a reaction is tough. Expensive photos mean less photos to take. That’s easier. Sending the files to a printer and dropping them off at the school a couple of weeks earlier would have been way easier.
I worked my butt off for a couple of hours. That was harder work than shooting a wedding. Was it worth it & would I do it again? Without a doubt. It was a blast!
P.S. As a little extra, I emailed digital photos to everyone who ordered a photo so they could upload it to facebook or whatever they wanted.
Here are a few of the photos: