Check out this amazing first dance! And at a beautiful wedding reception venue to boot. I know the point of the video is the bride and groom dance, but look at how gorgeous their decorations are! And that dress. Love everything about this.
Photo Booth Rental businesses are very popular around the world. You can find them at so many different events and if you are anything like me, you’re probably collecting them at all the various functions you attend throughout the year and plonking them in your photo albums or on the fridge.
This year alone, I’ve collected photo booth strips from a bar mitzvah, a 30th birthday party, a wedding, an engagement, a movie premiere, expos and a networking corporate function. They come in various shapes and sizes such as post card size, or a pair of 6×2 strips. Some of them have dates, some of them have the name of the bride and groom and some of them are just blank.
MoBooth is a Melbourne photo booth hire company that is run by two photographers, Jenna and Will. They are based in Melbourne and Brisbane, Australia. They live and breathe photo booths, having designed their own photo booths from scratch combining their knowledge in DSLR photography, props design and portrait and studio lighting with their taste in industrial design. They pride themselves on the fact that their photo booths are carefully handcrafted and made with love from their ultra-hip studio in the town of Brunswick, Melbourne.
I met them through a mutual friend and they have hired me to design various different photo strip designs for them since 2013. This time, I’ve managed to sit down with them and ask them about their process and how their journey with photo booths began.
What are your backgrounds?
We both studied a Bachelor of Film and Television on the Gold Coast and we started working in film and television while running a wedding videography business on the side. In 2013, Super Frog Saves Tokyo released a slow motion booth video and it looked like so much fun that it inspired us to make our own. After that, it was a logical next step to move to photo booths.
What is the Slow Motion Booth?
We got really experimental and elaborate and built a full sized photo booth which houses a high speed camera and a television mounted outside it. The idea was, you can get your photos taken by a traditional photo booth on one side and get your video taken in slow motion on the other.
Were the Slow Motion Booths popular in Melbourne?
It was extremely fun but the setup was too elaborate as we had scaffold hanging towards a backdrop with 4 LED light panels hanging at the top of it but it was also very messy with all the props and silly string involved because anything that looks good in slow motion is obviously messy. We still offer it today, but we have refined so that it looks more like a traditional photo booth with 4 extra film lights.
What makes a good photo booth offering?
Jenna is obsessed with lighting, we use alien bees b400 flash units, so our photos are really well exposed and not only that, we can get quite far back with our composition, so you can squish 20 people in a group shot if you want to. There are far too many companies that use very small flash units and we did the same in the beginning, but you are limiting yourself to very tight shots and the photos are no different than your guest taking photos with their iPhones and printing it with an inkjet printer on photo paper.
Will believes the experience is one of the most important factors. Obviously the end product which is the photo strips but we are a photo booth hire business, so the photo strips is only one element of the whole experience. It’s all the little nuances, great photo strip designs, fun and unique props, friendly photo booth attendants and, of course, a great looking photo booth that can blend into different venues and functions.
What makes a good photo booth attendant?
Somebody that can get guests to “respect their authoritah” while still providing a fun service and pushing the boundaries of what you would normally do at a photo booth. The type of hosts that book us want a fun experience combined with gorgeous photos of their guests at their best.
What areas do you service?
We service all areas in Melbourne and travel out to Yarra Valley, Healesville, Mount Dandenong, Yarra Glen, Ferntree Gully, Mornington Peninsula, Frankston, etc. We have also started to expand out to Brisbane and the Gold Coast.
What is the most fun part of owning a photo booth business?
We still work with agencies as freelancers in advertising so sometimes things can get a little too hectic, but nothing beats retail therapy or op shop therapy for prop hunting. We frequent all the op shops in the north side of town as well as the Antiques Bazaar in St Kilda. We probably have the biggest vintage prop collection out of all the photo booth businesses and it just keeps growing and growing. Props are fun but it’s important to know when to use them, like there’s a time and place for a horses head or Gangnam Style face mask but part of the booth attendants job is to make sure there isn’t too much of one thing. After all you wanna see photos of your guest rather than strips of Bojack Horseman and his masked accomplice.
Why should I hire a photo booth for my event?
Photo booths are seriously fun, it’s not a fad. Think about it, for $700 to $1000, you can have something which your guests can take home as well as entertain themselves with. It’s like a photo booth shows up and everyone knows what to do with them. It provides a lot of fun for christmas parties, weddings, expos, birthday parties as well as at the end of it, you can look back at the photos and remember your event and which guests were the loudest. There’s nothing that represents your guests better than silly candid photos of them in a photo booth.
Why do you love Melbourne?
Melbourne is just amazing, the coffee culture, the op shops, the amazing restaurants, the Australian Open, St Kilda Beach, Dandenong Ranges, The Great Ocean Road and the list goes on. There is never a shortage of things to do in Melbourne, you can checkout http://www.theurbanlist.com/melbourne if you need more convincing!
Where can we find you?
It’s not as common these days to keep an address book with everyone’s postal addresses. This can be a real problem when it comes to mailing out your wedding invitation or save the date cards.
Luckily this awesome resource is available for free! It gathers everyone’s addresses for you and organises them into a handy list which you can then reference while you’re sending them all out DIY, or pass onto the company organising your wedding stationary.
It’s actually super handy for any event that you want to send a physical card to. Not just weddings but 21st birthdays, bat mitzvahs and bar mitzvahs, Christmas parties or simply Christmas cards on their own. You could even use it with an email list you might have gathered at an expo, conference or corporate function to send out samples.
So many uses! Hope it proves useful to you guys!
There are so many opportunities to get creative with your stationary at a wedding, and place cards are no exception. The cute little labels letting your guests know where to sit don’t have to be extravagant, but can add that extra touch of detail.
Brown cardboard works well amongst most décor at a wedding reception. Get some card stock, borrow grandma’s old typewriter and get to work typing out your guests names. Add a little hole punch and some string, and you’ve just created your own place cards that are so cheap they’re almost free.
For seated wedding reception venues in Melbourne, there will be a napkin for each seat. Tie in your placeholder with the tableware as a napkin ring and you’ll have a no-fuss and highly effective guide for your guests to find their seats. The names can either be printed onto high density paper, or have someone with beautiful handwriting ink them onto card or fabric. Add some fresh flowers for the final touch.
Although it will take a bit of extra effort, this third option will be the most personal. Find a photo of each of your guests – preferably something a little silly or fun. If you don’t have an amazing digital collection of photos of all your friends and family, Facebook is there to help. To go that extra step, you could even hire a photo booth for your engagement party and use the photo booth prints of each person as their place cards. Keep it ultra silly and leave out their name from the place holder. It will force everyone to look at each others photos very hard to recognise themselves, and makes for the perfect conversation starter at each table.
If there’s one thing that every event needs – its guests! And they’re not going to get there without an invitation, that’s for sure. Besides the obvious when, where, and what for, invitations should contain a few other important details that could greatly improve the quality of your event. Here are a few examples.
Wedding venues can range from high end hotels to farmyard barns and everything in between. They are often places your guests have never been to before and quite possibly out of their way. This is why you should always include directions to your wedding ceremony and wedding reception locations.
If it’s somewhere out of town, you should also give some information about accommodation. Aunties, grandparents and people travelling from overseas will greatly appreciate some details about where to stay and how far away it is. If you have room to, include a few options.
Wedding presents can be a delicate topic. Couples these days usually already have a toaster and probably don’t want a two in one deep fryer and popcorn maker. If you’ve set up a fund for your honeymoon trip or a favourite charity, be sure to let your guests know about it beforehand.
Add some how-to-RSVP details at the bottom and your guests will have an all inclusive guide to your wedding – and no excuse not to come!
Christmas is the time of year that businesses splash some cash to show their appreciation of their staff at an end of year party. Every workplace does this a little different, so be sure to include appropriate details so all those new employees know what’s going on.
Is it compulsory for staff to attend or entirely voluntary? Will there be a bar tab or is it more low key? What is the dress code? Will it be a sit down event with a catered dinner or only light snacks supplied? Are you running competitions or awarding prizes? These are all things your guests could be considering, and if they’re not too sure of what’s expected you might find yourself short by a few people.
Twenty-firsts are a big deal all over the world. In many cultures it’s a significant coming of age ceremony, while other places it’s simply an opportunity for an extra large party. Everyone does things a little differently, so give a little context so your guests know what to expect.
It’s common to give these types of parties a theme. If it’s ‘Black and White Ballroom’, ‘Toga Party’ or ’80s Adventure’ themed, include this throughout your invitation. Design the card in your colour scheme and include pictures. This adds to the overall feel and expectation of the event and you’ll have a better chance of your guests actually turning up in the right costume.
If you’re providing food, say so. There’s no definite rule here so don’t expect people to know automatically or they might all turn up with full stomachs.
If there’s a band playing or a photo booth hire with a guest book, adding that into the invite could be the extra persuasion needed to get your more shy friends attending.
Corporate functions and Conferences
It’s safe to say lots of business men and women travel interstate for conferences and other corporate functions. Not everyone has a secretary to organise the details for them, so try to make it as easy as possible.
Conferences hosted at hotels often have package deal for accommodation. Make sure to let your attendants know any deals your have set up and how to book them.
Side events, cocktail evenings and special guests should all get a mention, and if there are group activities planned that need preparation, it goes without saying that should be included too. Give easy directions on how to RSVP, and your corporate event will be well on the way to success.
Some things are made to go to together, like kids and balloons, wine and cheese, and photo booths and save the date cards. They’re a great way to combine fun photos of you and hubby-to-be with important info for your guests about your upcoming wedding. I’ll hazard a guess and say most of you don’t have unlimited access to a photo booth to take pictures in any day of the week, so here’s a little guide on how to do it yourself with a camera, backdrop and a few props at home.
To start, find a nice flat, even background for your photos. White walls are a popular choice, but if you have access to some funky wallpaper, that looks even better. Think repeating patterns, pastel colours and mid grey, but avoid solid black or bright colours.
Stay clear of windows and mess or clutter in the background. You don’t want anything to distract from the two of you and your message. If you can’t find a suitable space you can always hire a backdrop from your local photography shop, or use some neutral coloured curtains.
You’ll also need a camera with self timer and a flash. Or better yet, an off camera flash. Set them up on a tripod or shelf at eye level a couple meters in front of your backdrop. Leave everything there for now and we’ll get to the photo taking in a moment.
Step 2: Sort out your message and props
Next up is your save the date message. You can use a blackboard and chalk, or print out words on a large piece of card. The idea is to take four different photos with a different word in each. ‘Save the date 14.2.16’ is a simple and easy message, but you can mix it up however you like.
Take your time designing each card or board, this is your opportunity to get creative! When you’re done, place them in hand’s reach of your photo booth studio set up. Pop on your favourite outfit, get your hair looking nice and gather any other props that you want to use. Now is the time to get Mr Snuggles into his
cat booties and wig (if that’s what you’re going for…).
Step 3: Mimic the photo booth look
Photo booth pictures have a certain look. To mimic this we will need to do a few things. Make sure the camera is set at eye level or a little above. Trust me, below the chin photos are not attractive.
Turn off the ceiling lights and lamps in the room, and pull the curtains closed. If you’re using the camera flash, make sure its on. If you’re using a flash unit, place it a little higher than the camera and sync up. Set your timer and get ready!
Step 4: Take the pictures
You’ll be taking four different photos. Plan out your poses with your fiancé and/or the pets. Don’t forget to make space for your Save The Date signs in frame.
When you’re ready, get snapping! Take a peek at the photos after each round and keep trying until you’re happy with the outcome. Don’t be afraid to pull faces or get cute with your fiancé. Your upcoming wedding is exciting news and it’s totally okay to have a big grin plastered across your face!
Step 5: Put the card together
Design wizards should find this next part easy – putting it all together. Unfortunately for everyone else, this home made photo booth doesn’t spit out a beautiful print for you as soon as all the photos are taken. We’ll have to do it ourselves.
If you’ve got some basic Photoshop skills, all you need to do is bring all the photos together into one image. Set up a photo print sized canvas and give it a white background, then stack the photos from top to bottom with a little gap between each one. Save your final product and send it off to the printers. If you have a good printer with photo paper, you could even do this step yourself.
Those who are less confident with designing the print, get in touch with me for a tailored design. I’ve designed both invitations and photo booth print templates for clients and would love to put together something original for you.
Behold! The end result: a beautiful photo booth style save the date print for your wedding announcement. You can even continue the theme by hiring a photobooth for your wedding reception.