This week, we invited one of SHW's favorite partners and event photographers, Alan Alabastro, owner of the Seattle-based Alabastro Photography, to write a guest post on the subject he knows best, and a key element to any successful event: Professional Photography.
Read below for Alan's insights on the importance of capturing professional photos of any event, the changing world of photography in the digital age of social media, and why SHW chooses to hire photographers like Alan to ensure our events are captured with quality and precision.
With the proliferation of increasingly sophisticated smartphone cameras and affordable entry-level professional cameras, more people are taking and sharing photos than ever before. In fact, every minute, over 3.5 million photos are posted online. With so many enthusiastic amateur photographers available, it is tempting to settle for a friend or colleague with a new camera or a cute Instagram feed to record your company’s events at low or no cost, rather than hiring an experienced professional event photographer.
But the stakes are too high.
With the overload of images online, the consumer’s eye has become more appreciative of quality and thoughtfulness. To stand out from all the other pages online and reach your intended audience in a meaningful way, it is important to produce high quality and engaging visual content, which improves your brand perception and conveys your unique professional message. Social media relies heavily on visual content, so great images can increase traffic to those channels and fuel SEO on your website.
Capturing quality photographs during an event is not as simple as it might appear. Professional event photography requires a special skill set of technical knowledge, artistic flair and human interaction. Whether you intend to use your images for social media, future marketing, or merely to document the investment of your event, there are many reasons to leave it to a pro:
Specialized equipment is necessary for the challenging lighting environments and fast action.
Technical skills with an array of lenses, flash and diffusers is critical.
Expert composition skills are needed to frame the subject within the context and timing of the event, in an artistically appealing and flattering way, with an eye towards the marketing needs, all done quickly and fluidly on the spot.
Experienced event photographers also understand the flow of events and stay aware of what is happening and about to happen in the room.
They are dedicated to complete and continuous coverage and know what to ask and what to anticipate so they don’t miss special moments.
Capturing interesting and engaging moments that compel people to want to look at and share the photos
Advanced Editing skills: the ability to clean up imperfect but important shot and to make good shots even more pleasing with expert cropping and color/lighting corrections (often overlooked by untrained editors)