February 20, 2010
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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.

BOOOO-RING.

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:

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