How to Take Candids at a Party or Event

Learn how to take candids at a party or event from professional photographer Luke Ballard in this Howcast video.


When we're at a party or event, we're quite often wanting to take photos of people. But we don't necessarily want that "Cheese!" sort of look when they're posing in front of the camera. As you can see, at this recent event with 50 Cent, I took the official, you know, all cast photo from one of his production. Wanting more photos of 50 Cent, and not wanting to be intrusive or be in his way, but also wanting to get something a little bit more natural, I tried doing a few other things to get better photos. Let's look at some techniques for making sure that people are a little bit more natural in front of the camera. Firstly, don't tell them to say cheese. That's the worst thing you can do when taking photos at a party.

The second thing is, make it look like you're just getting ready to take the photograph. At that point, they're going to be a little bit more relaxed. The muscles are only going to come in and kick into pose mode when that camera's in front of your eye. But by having it all ready and lined up, they're going to be a little bit more relaxed, and a little bit more open to a decent photograph. Another thing I like to do at weddings is have a conversation with people without looking through my camera. Get to know your camera and your lens and what it's capable of, and learn to shoot from the hip or from chest high, and just walk around taking photos as you're expected to. So by being less intrusive or less in-your-face with the camera at a party, you're definitely going to get better event photographs.

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