YouLookNiceTodayPhotography 4:11am, 9 December 2008
First of all, I'm excited to finally make it to another meet up...if feels like it's been forever and I'm feeling a need to refill my strobist tank.

But the reason I'm posting is because I'm trying to figure something out. A favorite wedding photog of mine does something he calls a "Crazy booth" in which he sets up a mini studio with a white background and has people attending the wedding reception do fun things. While I love this concept and feel that selling the prints to the attendees would be lucrative I CANNOT justify spending $149 for a friggin 12 page PDF for a "how to" manual. I mean really, thats just greedy. Maybe I'd pay $50 but not much more.

So I thought I'd pool our collective knowledge and see if we can figure out his set up just from looking at the photos.

Here is an example and you can scan his blog for more:

He says he uses the same setting every time so in addition to the set up maybe we could make some guesses on settings. (just off hand I'm guessing he shoots pretty wide open.)

OregonVelo 10 years ago
This is funny... Jeff and I talked about this setup. Not this guys, but Jeff was talking about doing the same thing at receptions. Looking at the photos. I would say one large softbox or octogon. Set to the right about 8 feet high. 35mm prime at f/8
I was going to guess a large softbox as well but I'm wondering about other flashes and I'm thinking that he shoots at least at 5.6f or wider because of the bokeh on some of the shots. I'm also thinking a pretty wide angle lens.
OregonVelo 10 years ago
I can see what you mean, I guess it depends if he is using a full frame sensor or not.
Ben Lundberg 10 years ago
so i'm not sure if you're talking the ones with the just white b/g or the others too... but i agree that there is just a big soft box higher off to the right on most of those shots... if you're looking at doing a all white background similar to those he's doing in some of the shots check out Zack Arias's blog on doing a White Seamless Tutorial ... just start at the first tutorial... if this isn't what you're looking for then at umm my bad :)

| whiteSpace | 10 years ago
I love a good mystery. I agree, the light is high to the right of camera, but I say it's an umbrella. You can see it pretty clearly in the guys glasses in the last 2 photos. Also, since it's called a "booth" I bet it has side walls of white that help bounce some of the light back into the scene. None of the shots go below the knees either so you don't need a full seamless setup, just a smooth white background.
Awesome Ben! Thanks a lot for that. I'm having a little class reunion get together pretty soon and I'm thinking about setting up something like this.

Thanks for the input everyone and if anyone else has any ideas please feel free to share. :)
metakephoto 10 years ago
yeah setting something up like this is really easy, plus once youve got your lights in place, your exposure will be exactly the same throughout the night and then you could just batch your RAW files through Lightroom (just fix your first shot, batch it and your done). I've done a similar setup but with my ringflash and i took a white balance shot in the beginning and at the end of the night.
Nicholas Cooper 10 years ago
That actually gives me some pretty good ideas, especially on ways to capture the photos without having to distract yourself from the rest of the reception in the off chance you don't have a second shooter or assistant. Here lately I have been a spark of creativity and have been writing ideas down left and right. I hope to put some of them to use soon. :D
So here are my attempts. I'm thinking I could probably decrease the power of all. Using TTL made everything too dark though. My set up was an SB-600 upper camera right with shoot through umbrella. And an SB-600 camera left shot into reflective umbrella at 4 feet for fill.

My photobooth photos
My photobooth photos

My photobooth photos

OregonVelo 10 years ago
Did you have auto white balance on? Or did the placement of each subject change the light that much?
It was on flash white balance but the RAW conversion automatically changed it. They look a little off when they are up against each other.
imjakechapman 8 years ago
they use a Alien Bees 1600, a 17-55mm 2.8 on a Nikon D700... on a solid white background ( aka large white piece of paper ) lol

as far as post processing..

Find a action that works for each individual..

for me, i have a couple of simple things like sharpening then little color balance then little curves set on soft-light on 50% opacity..

but gotta find what action will work best when it comes to that.. just keep lighting and PP consisitent for best results.. :)
ʎɥdɐɹbodıd 8 years ago
Funny this thread came back alive after 2 yrs... especially since I've heard more & more about these photo-booth venues popping up lately at weddings & company events. They seem really fun and bring good fun energy to the party. I just Googled the service and one that's pretty popular is actually Portland-based, Paparazzi Tonight. You can see a behind-the-scenes clip there that kinda gives u a sneak peak at his gear and looks like his only strobe may actually be that ring light. interesting.
I've done this at weddings too. I use either white seamless, or a white muslin. Two lights, one from either side through shoot through umbs and one light through a soft box more or less on axis for front fill. Works pretty well as a general 'photo booth' setup.
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