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Old January 19th, 2014, 08:06 AM   #1
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Offering Photobooth/videobooth

I am looking to start offering a photobooth and/or videobooth as a add-on to my wedding packages. The photobooth is getting really popular in the US. It is a curtained off area that has a video light and a camera attached to a touchscreen. Guests enter, press a button on the screen, and I takes three pictures. It then prints a copy for the guest and a copy for the bride/groom. Many that offer this have someone who collects the brides copies and puts them in a scrapbook. The guests sign beside their pictures. There are usually silly props at a table (masks, wigs, signs with funny sayings...) available for the guests to use. The pictures get funnier throughout the night. The bride normally gets all the pictures on a disc.

My version of a videobooth would look similar, but have a video camera and a monitor inside. The guests would record video messages to the couple (well wishes, advise, funny stories, etc.). It would require someone to man both of these, so I would include that in my prices.

Does anyone do either/both of these? Where should I look for the gear? How is it working out for you? Suggestions/tips?
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Old January 19th, 2014, 09:20 AM   #2
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

Hi Byron

We had a photobooth at a wedding on Saturday. Yep, it's popular for sure but the prints are really tiny and I wonder if the guests actually keep them ?? I was actually wondering why you couldn't save the images to a drive or onto a laptop and then email them to the guest's phone. That would give them the opportunity to post them on Facebook easily, send them around or even print them at home at a decent size. Here they normally run for 3 hours only at the reception and are really crowded.

Anyone else seen them that send the image to a phone???

I think video would be tricky and you would still have to edit the footage of course and how do you distribute each clip to each guest? Could it be done on the night? and again could you send it straight to a phone? A camcorder that records in MP4 would probably be all you need!! In fact in the confines of a photobooth a GoPro set on medium POV would work pretty well as long as you had some light inside and the Hero's record in MP4 so something like an iPhone will play it fine for instant playback ...I think with a Bluetooth connection, an operator could transfer a clip straight to a guest's phone. That way you have no edits and whatever is recorded comprises the guest's clip. That way you have no media costs apart from the bride's DVD!

Other peoples ideas would be good to hear too!!

Chris
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Old January 19th, 2014, 09:24 AM   #3
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

I think a better option honestly might be go straight to a slomo video booth. All you really need is a GoPro cam shooting 120fps and some decent lights, and the shower rod curtain kit setup. Add in some props etc and you're off. It seems the newest trend and might replace the photobooth in time, or it might be a passing fad. Anyway I think your video booth idea, sorry I just don't think it will work. I try at almost all weddings (depending how late I'm there) to get guest interviews & often times people are relucatant to or say flat out "No thanks". Also it really takes alot of direction with them holding the mic too far away, then not passing it to the next guest etc. I would just go around as the videog & try to obtain guest interviews in the hallways or lobby instead.

I agree photobooths are popular & can be a moneymaker.
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Old January 19th, 2014, 09:29 AM   #4
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

Hi David

I do guest interviews as part of my package and as long as you have a pleasant operator..yes, people will talk ..if they will talk in the lobby during drinks and even at the tables before dinner they will be more than happy to say something inside a curtained booth! Get a group of 3 ladies and they love to say something on video. I never have an issue at all.

Chris
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Old January 19th, 2014, 09:35 AM   #5
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

Byron, there is a facebook group for Photobooth owners. https://www.facebook.com/groups/Phot...ork/?ref=br_tf

Go sign up to get in if you want and you'll learn a lot. As far as using video for messages at the photo booth, not a bad idea,but might not be practical. Smoothly integrating that function with photos sounds awkward and would require some ingenuity. One key thing about photo booths that I've read is that operators want to get people in and out as fast as possible to prevent lines. Video messages would tie up the booth and you do not want that. You could maybe do messages away from the photo area in a separate area. In and out is what you want.

I've given a lot of thought to doing similar. Slomo booths are the rage right now for sure, that looks like fun.
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Old January 19th, 2014, 11:13 AM   #6
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron Jones View Post
My version of a videobooth would look similar, but have a video camera and a monitor inside. The guests would record video messages to the couple (well wishes, advise, funny stories, etc.). It would require someone to man both of these, so I would include that in my prices.
I recall seeing something similar in concept, only it was recorded with an ipad, which was mounted to a tripod, and instructions next to it. This setup didn't require someone to man it.
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Old January 19th, 2014, 12:24 PM   #7
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

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Originally Posted by Warren Kawamoto View Post
I recall seeing something similar in concept, only it was recorded with an ipad, which was mounted to a tripod, and instructions next to it. This setup didn't require someone to man it.
That's a pretty good idea as long as your wedding is classy enough that a guest won't run off with the iPad:-)

I found several Photo Booth apps with a cursory search

Wedding Booth for iPad - The Inexpensive DIY Wedding Photo Booth
https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/pock...385145330?mt=8
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Old January 19th, 2014, 01:29 PM   #8
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

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Originally Posted by Nigel Barker View Post
That's a pretty good idea as long as your wedding is classy enough that a guest won't run off with the iPad:-)
That's me out...
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Old January 19th, 2014, 02:33 PM   #9
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

We do a no-prints, open-air photo booth. Guests can leave their email address and get a link when we post the gallery to Facebook. We also turn the photos into a stop-motion video.

We use some simple umbrella lights, a backdrop, and camera on a tripod. Our backdrop is 9 feet wide - we pick out fabric at the local store and use fabric glue to make it 8'x9'. The video below I think I did 2 frames per second. I find 3-5 works better, but the gal took too many photos and I don't like the video getting long.

By far the biggest thing seems to be how quickly you get the mass email out. When I wait a week or more, we only get a small number of clicks. If I send it out on the Monday a day or two later, we get a LOT more traffic.
Photo Booth | RNB Weddings

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Old January 19th, 2014, 07:45 PM   #10
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

The IPad and the $10.00 App seems such a simple way to go from the link Nigel supplied!

Ok, it's very Uncle Bob but it does mean that all you need (apart from an iPad of course) is a curtained booth and some props .... I do like the idea of the clients getting their images instantly. The current booth printers have such tiny prints that few even keep them. I think they would keep images if they were on their phone.

I leave weddings and see plenty of booth prints discarded on the floor!!

Video would still also be quite attractive at a booth especially if you could have either!! How would video be distributed?? Could you simply upload to a folder in your YouTube account??? There must be an app by now that allows you to grab videos off YouTube?? Upload should be pretty fast as message clips are only maybe 30 seconds at most so a batch of 10 videos would upload in a few minutes.

Interesting concept here so keep adding comments if anyone is using a booth or is considering one

Chris
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Old January 19th, 2014, 09:16 PM   #11
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

I found this ..it looks so easy and simple!!

Just a tripod and a tablet and you are done and it can send the photo strip to dropbox or direct to Facebook so you don't need to have a printer. Printer options are also available for both the operator and the clients.

5-minute Photo Booth

Chris
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Old January 19th, 2014, 09:41 PM   #12
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

A friend of mine offers photobooths and does very well with them. they're basically pipe and drape and can hold up to 10 people and are wheelchair accessible. He has 6 of them and during the season usually 4 to 6 are out 2 to 3 times a week. He makes good money with them. Initial investment is long taken care of so it's paper and ink and whatever he pays the kids he hires to set them up and man them during a wedding. Usually it's a 3 hour contract with and hour to set up and half that to strike so they're happy and honestly not working too hard at all.
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Old January 20th, 2014, 08:29 AM   #13
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

If you plan on buying a traditional looking printer, I recommend a Steve Lynch photo booth - he's out of Atlanta. His work is excellent and his customer service is great.

If you DIY, and want to print, be sure to get a real DiSub printer and do the prints right. Fighting with some Canon photo printer, or having pictures take 4 minutes instead of 30 seconds won't do you any good. Maybe have a simple photo printer on site as backup. Most photo booth contracts have a clause about how much downtime they can have. Make sure the people can't touch your camera lens. Or tip over your photo booth box.

For anyone wanting to get their pictures to their phones, there are plenty of options for people pooling their photos, often with a hashtag. For instance, the wedding we're shooting next week, if anyone tags a photo via Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram with their wedding hashtag, they all end up in one place that you can look up. I'm blanking on the app names right now.
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Old January 20th, 2014, 09:43 PM   #14
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

Thanks for posting all the great information. And thank you Dave for the message. I really appreciated it. Now the problem is money. I did not realize how expensive these things are!! Wow. Can't find a professional looking one for under $7k. Guess I need to start saving. I do think it is a good investment. Even though there is some competition in this area where I live, it could help with a bundled deal with a wedding video package.
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Old January 20th, 2014, 11:39 PM   #15
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Re: Offering Photobooth/videobooth

Another service that seems to be popular here is instagram at the reception. Videographer sets up a projector/laptop which is hooked up to the internet, showing pictures on a big screen. On the screen is the instagram website link for guests to upload their photos to. The slideshow is looped. The pictures create an instant SDE slideshow which gets updated live as the evening progresses! The guests have a blast because they are in the shots, taken by themselves for all to see.
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