Photographer Brief 101: How to Ensure You Don’t Miss a Shot

You’re cruising Instagram, Pinterest, or even your friends’ Facebook pages, living your life and clicking the “like” button, when suddenly are hit by a sudden twinge of jealousy when you see their photos. This isn’t just a tiny little twinge, either. Everything looks perfect—almost as if it were staged. Perfect lighting, perfect backdrops, perfect atmosphere being conveyed—how do they do this? Easy! They prepare a photographer brief document for their event! Oh, get that look off your face and calm down! This is a simple thing to do, and you don’t have to break the bank while doing it, either.

Here are some tips and tricks you can employ the next time you want Insta-worthy pics for your next event, too. You’re welcome!

  1. Get Inspired

We get it because we’ve been there: planning an event can be stressful, and this is especially true when it comes to photography. One of the fastest ways to convey what you’d like your potential photographer to do is to create a mood board via Pinterest. Name your board accordingly (such as “Tommy’s 4th Birthday Ideas,” “My Daughter’s Dream Wedding,” “Julie’s Graduation”, etc.) and then pin ideas and pictures that display the mood or atmosphere you’re going for. Photographers are people who communicate best with good, clear visuals, and a Pinterest board may be the best way to do this. You can even share it with them online!

  1. Share Your Photographer Brief

Sit down and talk with your potential photographer regarding the time of day, potential light conditions (or hazards), overall atmosphere, and what type of “mood” you want the party photography to communicate. This is especially important for night events and adults-only types of parties. Photographers have different types of equipment for different types of conditions, but it is always best to speak with your photographer concerning what type of event is being photographed.

A good photographer brief is developed in collaboration so get them around and get their insights.

  1. Make a Checklist

What kind of photography would you prefer to see from your event? Is it from your child’s birthday party, a wedding, or what is supposed to seem like an “impromptu” get-together with friends? Will there be props? What is the furniture or overall setting like? Outdoors? Indoors? Are there certain types of pictures you don’t want taken at all, such as candid shots? Share your checklist with your photographer so they know what to look for, too!

  1. Check out the Surroundings

Though surroundings are important for major events such as weddings and outdoor photography, they can be just as important for other types of parties as well. This is true for major outdoor-style parties like summer birthdays, graduation parties where there might be a pool, or outdoor family parties in the summer. Let the photographer get a good feel for the overall setting, no matter where it is, so that they may prepare with lighting, props, lenses, and other necessities they may need.

  1. Communication is Key

You can’t be everywhere at once, and neither can your event photographer. Make sure you both communicate clearly and effectively regarding date, time, placement for their equipment, and discuss any questions or concerns you have with the photographer before the event. If you absolutely love their work, leave a positive review on their web site or through their agent so that others can hire them for similar work. Remember, too, that what may look like just a picture to you may be considered art to the photographer or even a casual observer. Everyone loves positive reviews, so if you’re truly happy with their work, give ‘em a shout-out and refer them to friends!

When events are important, the pictures that help share and preserve the memories are, too! Be sure to share your favourite moments from the event on your social media if and when appropriate, and make everyone green with envy when you use a photographer – and your photographer brief – for your next major event!