When we were planning our wedding, we saw lots of wedding photo booth ideas. You can either rent a traditional photo booth, or there are various DIY setups involving digital cameras.
I started thinking and thought it would be cool to have a setup that would allow people to see their snaps rights away, without having to go around to the camera itself. With a DSLR that supports remote control from a laptop, that is fairly easy to set up, but as it turned out, my cameras don’t support remote control over USB. So I started looking into alternatives and soon hit on the idea of using an EyeFi card and my iPad. (A few weeks after I started planning our photo booth, a story popped up on Engadget about a similar, albeit more professional, setup.)
What you’ll need
- A digital camera with remote shutter release (I used the Panasonic GF-1 with a cheap wireless remote shutter release from eBay)
- An EyeFi SD card in the camera (make sure it’s a newer EyeFi card with support for “direct mode”)
- An iPad connected to the EyeFi network running the free EyeFi app
- A tall tripod
- A table or stand of some kind for the iPad
- (optional) A frame, backdrop or props of some kind for guests to pose with
Camera, remote shutter, iPad and EyeFi card
With this setup, guests could take a snapshot using the remote shutter and almost instantly see it on the iPad a few seconds later. To speed up the wireless transfers, I configured the EyeFi card to wirelessly transfer the JPEGs only, whilst keeping the large RAW files on the card. This also allowed us to place the camera somewhere out of the way and still gave the guests a way to view their pictures.
The photo booth setup – the iPad is just off to the side on a table
One of the snaps from the photo booth
- Turn on face recognition if your camera supports it and make sure the autofocus is correctly detecting your guests.
- Turn off any power saving options on the camera and iPad.
- If your setup is indoors, connect the iPad and camera to AC adapters, if possible.
- You’ll need a fairly tall tripod or something to stand it on to get the camera up high enough. Ours was a bit low so I ended up adjusting the perspective using Adobe Lightroom.
- Explain the setup to someone beforehand and ask them to keep an eye on things to make sure everything runs smoothly.
Our guests had a lot of fun with our DIY photobooth and I love the way the pictures turned out, highly recommended!