Learning to shoot pictures as a DJ

November 21, 2011 by Arnoldo Offermann

How are your photos? You could have the sharpest looking rigs, but unless your photography can properly display such arrangements then your marketing will suffer. Networking with the photographer is always a good idea that can lead to win-win networking, but their ultimate goal is to take photos that the bride wants and not photos to boost your marketing.

What does this mean? You may not get any photos of JUST the uplighting, or a before and after of a flood fill. You also may have to wait a while to get those photos, and your copyright use may be limited.

Heading to your local electronics store and buying a point-and-shoot is a bad idea. Actually, any point-and-shoot is a bad idea. For photos that will take your marketing to the next level, you’ll want a Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR) camera, such as the Canon T2i. What do these cameras offer that point and shoots don’t?

* Exceptional low-light performance

* A wide array of lenses that give you many options

* HD Video recording with unsurpassed quality at an affordable price.

* Outstanding image quality.

You’ll notice a little wheel or menu on top of most DSLRs with MANY options. Ignore all of them, except for M (Manual), AV (Aperture Priority) and sometimes Tv (Shutter Priority)… but this one can yield many blurry photos. Anything else is like buying a sports car and choosing the automatic 3 speed transmission.

You won’t learn photography overnight, but there are MANY great books that will teach you to shoot with a DSLR in Manual Mode (yours truly has a video designed for DJs!); but once you get the hang of it, your photos will WOW your prospects. We get MANY calls from people who saw our photos on our blog and were so impressed by the lighting they knew we’d be a great fit.

Will you clash with photographers? Yes and no. If you subscribe to Mobile Beat, you’ll soon see my upcoming article where I discuss how to avoid any awkwardness with the photographer as you pull a camera out.

So what will you need? This list can get expensive QUICKLY, but this IS your marketing. The lenses (AKA Glass) can cost more than the camera itself, but when the body is upgraded, your lenses are still there. Here’s some items you’ll need, other than the obvious such as batteries, memory cards, etc.:

* A body, The best one for DJs, in my opinion, is the Canon T2i. It offers an unmatched bang for the buck.

* Glass. You’ll want a “fast” lens. This means it shoots at a wide aperture, which allows more light in a short amount of time. The Canon 50mm 1.8 is often called the Plastic Fantastic or Nifty Fifty; it’s a VERY fast lens at a dirt-cheap price: $99 in most stores!

* Flash. Don’t use the Pop Up Flash. Once in a while you’ll want to fill in some light, get a flash that will allow you to aim the light somewhere besides the person’s gace.

* A book (or video) on photography.

* Lots of practice!

Once you get the hang of it, your marketing will look stellar and grab attention of your prospective clients better than ever before. Plus, photography is a fun hobby that yields many rewards. Try it out today!


Arnoldo Offermann Arnoldo Offermann (40 Posts)

Arnoldo Offermann is the president of 4SchoolsOnly, a national phenomenon in school dances. In a market where DJs cry about $500 school DJs, 4SO sees 10-20x that price tag per event. Arnoldo is also the creator of Master School Dances, the leading educational tools for DJs wanting to get into this great market. He is a sought-after speaker, reviewer, and DJ tech-writer. You can learn more at http://MasterSchoolDances.com

Filed Under: Mobile DJ Performance Tips