Many families still have photo albums, even in the digital age. There’s a good reason for that – their history helps define who they are. It’s the same for churches – so don’t forget to take photos, and lots of them! A good rule of thumb is to send photographers EVERYWHERE!

I’m not (necessarily) talking professionals here, or even professional-level gear – cellphone cameras are capable of capturing some very high def images, and volunteers can cover a lot of ground, with a few simple guidelines in place…

  1. Ask your photo team to simply take photos, not edit them. The vast majority of photos should be taken in landscape mode (rather than portrait). They can be edited as needed after the fact.
  2. Ask for quantity, not just quality. End users putting together social media, videos, etc… can decide which photos best suit their needs at that time.
  3. Ask the team to focus on people, not places – after all, the building isn’t the church, the people are.
  4. Give clear direction regarding how much access a photographer can have during the service – for example, a good rule is to go no further than halfway up center aisles during a worship set, and less than that during a message when people are seated.
  5. Don’t assume – a volunteer photographer may not grasp that you want photos of people interacting before and after the service if you just say: “Can you take some photos this weekend?”
  6. Have an easy way for volunteers to download photos to online storage.
  7. Lastly, make sure that the photographers have a lanyard or some other identifier so that people know what they are doing (and that they are background checked if they are taking photos in kids areas).

More on photographers tomorrow…  

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