Add a sense of childhood nostalgia to your wedding reception and send a keepsake home with all of your guests, by renting a photo booth!For the last two years photo booths have been increasing in popularity at weddings, with the advent of the digital photo booth. While they will never replace a professional photographer (just try dancing your first dance in a traditional photo booth to get some pictures, not going to happen) a photo booth at your reception will add fun, be a conversation piece and can be enjoyed by everyone!There are two types of true photo booths.The traditional or classic photo booth which uses chemicals to develop actual photographic paper with four pictures on it. The classic photo booth is slow to produce the strips, anywhere from 90 seconds to 7 minutes, which decreases the amount of photos and times the guests can enjoy the experience. The classic weighs anywhere between 300 to 900 pounds so transportation cost is a factor.The digital photo booth is the modernized version of the classic. Portable, quick to set up and just as easy to use. Digital photo booths offer a lot of options their classic cousins just don’t have. Not only can you have the traditional vertical stack of four images, taken one after another, but you can have the sheet customized to reflect you or your wedding! The digital photo booth also offers the ability to print out a post card shape strip instead of the traditional vertical.
Is there a picture that you or some of your guests would love to have a 4×6, 5×7 or 8×10 made of? Most digital photo booths store the images for reprinting later on. Some rental companies offer montages, set to music of the images or the original digital files, on DVD.
Another advantage of digital photo booths is the ability to share with everyone on the outside what is happening on the inside! Some booths offer the ability to play back as a montage all the images taken as soon as they are taken. So you can see that crazy face your best friend made before the image is even printed to paper.
What to look for in a photo booth.
With the popularity of the photo booth increasing lots of people are calling things photo booths that just are not a photo booth! We all know what a photo booth looks like, every time we go to the mall there is one there. They are a box with a camera on one wall, a small bench on the other and most can fit 4 people comfortably. You step in, sit down and pull close the privacy curtain and hit the button to start the pictures. Limited space is half the fun! In college I and my girlfriends decided to see if we could get 15 of us into one picture in a two person photo booth. We managed to get 8 heads and a half in one picture. (Wish I could find my copy of that strip today.) That is what I consider a photo booth, not only are photo booths where you throw inhibitions to the wind and get funky, but where the challenge can be getting everyone in the picture! The memories of high school and college.
But today, to make a quick buck people are throwing the label photo booth on just about anything. Last year I saw a supposed photo booth, it was a section of pipe and drape (nothing boothy about it) against a wall and opposite it a camera hooked to a cheap printer. The photographer then stood there and told everyone to smile. Not a photo booth.
Then there was the ad I saw recently touting the “photo booth that can fit as many people as you want”. Once again it was pipe and drape, but this time at least in the shape of a rectangle and again a camera on a tripod with a cable run to a printer… Blah! Not a photo booth.
Then there is a company offering the “Open Air Photo Booth”, two boxes stacked, one with a camera, the other a printer, no “booth”. Just slightly above the camera on a tripod.
So if you are going to spend $1500 renting a photo booth, I recommend making sure it’s a real booth, hard sided rectangular with a bench and curtain and not something that should be hanging from your windows. Oh and the photo trigger at your touch, not someone standing outside with a laptop telling you to go “cheese” and clicking a mouse…
Digital photo booths don’t use chemicals and photo paper, but any printer that can interface with the software. So this means the photo strip can be printed by a laser, inject or dye-sub printer. Talking with a few photographers and doing some internet research it looks like a dye-sub printer will be the closest experience to chemical printing. Dye-sub is long lasting, comes the closest to looking like photo paper and truly prints a 2×6 strip of paper if you want the classic feel. All other options must be manually trimmed to feel like the classic strip. Also the dye-subs are very fast, approximately 30 seconds.
As with any service or rental you have on your wedding day, make sure you have a contract and that the vendor has liability insurance. Then step inside, pull the curtain close and get FUNKY and have fun!
Oh and still not convinced you should get a photo booth for your reception? The photo strips make fantastic party favors for your guests that they will treasure for a lifetime! Rent a photo booth for your South Bend wedding reception today!