A photo booth is a trendy idea that many people are starting to include at wedding receptions. They’re fun and you get some funny shots of your friends, however here’s an alternative idea that happened at one of the wedding I had recently. The bride and groom created their own version of a photo booth without the booth. You’ll get great pictures that will give you a cool behind-the-scenes look at your own wedding while you are busy taking photos with your professional photographer.
Most important to its success is designating an area at your reception with enough room for your guests to utilize the photo station, providing clear signage to explain to guests that they are creating their own personalized party favor that will be sent to them by e-mail after the wedding.
All you need is a little creativity. First they put up a sign on the table that instructed the guests about what to do. It took a little while for the idea to take off but when it did everyone was trying to get into the act. Soon people were beginning to notice guests with hugh noses and oversized glasses and the paparazzi began to gather around and started snapping photos like crazy.
They furnished chalkboard balloons (see photos – eraseable boards) where guests could write something, they provided chalk, erasers, a basket full of funny props (large eye glasses, a few inexpensive costumes, silly hats, feather boas and mustaches, large costume jewelry pieces, a rubber chicken, wigs, oversized neckties, faux facial hair, umbrella, empty picture frames, clown noses, a large heart-shaped pillow, etc.), a Polaroid camera, and extra film. A sombrero or cowboy hats, belts with large buckles and maybe even a toy gun and holster work at an outdoor reception held in the sunny Southwest. You may want to have some large cut-out letters (A, B, C, etc.) for guests to hold up.
A digital camera will work too, but I would recommend that you hire a photography student for a small fee (or invite them to eat at the reception) to assist guests with the process.
Consider a heart-shaped chalk board for guests to write on as a prop, also colored photo frames without backing for the guest to hold in front of their faces while someone else snaps the photo. Provide a chair, bench or stool for your guests to sit on.
This is a fun idea and you get instant, fun photos of your friends and family acting cute, funny, silly, and super-crazy. The bride and groom get to keeps the photos but each guest was sent a digital version of their photo by e-mail. Don’t over-complicate everything. Keep it simple and watch what happens. Make it easy to operate, so even a child can use it (wtih a little adult supervision).
It can also be acomplished with a WebCam as long as the area is assigned to someone who can make sure that guests are instructed about what to do and to make sure that the WebCam and other gear remains secure. 😉
You can also set up the camera to record directly into a laptop computer and then simply turned it around to face the guests so they can see what they look like before the photo is snapped.
You could also set up some backdrops, travel posters, etc., to make it more interesting. You can hang a fabric backdrop, make one from wood or cardboard with framed cutouts if you’re up for a challenge or use a building or the natural surroundings at the reception as your backdrop. Customize your photo booth area with a custom photo booth backdrop with your names, wedding date or monogram. Make the photo booth area as self-serve as possible so your guests will feel uninhibited to pose as they wish.
Another idea is to create a “photo wall” that guests can pose behind as someone else takes their picture.
Here is another idea that is a little more complicated, but sounds like it might work. Read: “How to Make a Photo Booth for Your Wedding.”
Not that ambitious! Sounds like a lot of work to you? Rent a real photo booth staffed by professionals! Read: “Lights! Camera! Click, Click, Click, Click!”
Several of the photos (taken by Larry James) are from the wedding of Jennifer Lauver and Ryan Hinman (Las Vegas) – Married @ 4:00 p.m., Saturday, November 6, 2010 – Ashley Manor Hacienda, Chandler, AZ.
Copyright © 2011 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s “romantic” Wedding Ceremony. Larry James is an award winning, non-denominational wedding officiant and performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere! Every wedding ceremony is customized to your complete satisfaction. Call to check availability: 480-998-9411 or 800-725-9223. You will find more than 455 pages of Wedding ideas, tips (90 tips and growing), ceremonies, and more at: http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com. Something NEW about weddings is posted every 4th day on this Wedding BLOG. Check Larry’s availability.
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