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50th anniversary party

Sara Wilson , Aug 23, 2009; 03:41 p.m.

I've been asked to shoot a 50th wedding anniversary party which will take place at a nice restaurant. I primarily do weddings and high school senior portraits, and I'm fairly new at that. I've researched a little online and searched this forum, and have not been able to come up with much. Does anyone have any suggestions as to what kinds of pictures are usually taken at anniversary parties? If possible, I would love to see some examples to give me some ideas, either in this forum or a link.
Thanks.

Responses

David Schilling - Chicago, Illinois , Aug 23, 2009; 04:18 p.m.

You can pretty much just treat it as you would a wedding reception. Be prepared for some toasts, possibly a cake-cutting, and an anniversary dance. Generally there will be lots of requests for family-based group shots and plenty of candid opportunities. Good luck.

Warren Lewis , Aug 23, 2009; 05:39 p.m.

Discuss with teh clients their plan for the party flow. Ask them what images they would like. Plan on lots of family/group shots.

Richard Beisigl , Aug 23, 2009; 05:58 p.m.

Treat it like it was a wedding; pictures of the"bride" alone, same for the "groom" and then together.
I am sure you get the "picture." But less formal.
Are the couple planning to renew their vows?

Frank Skomial , Aug 23, 2009; 06:01 p.m.

Make sure is OK to take pictures in that restaurant by asking the manager.
If there are other guests there, and they get disturbed too much, you could be asked to stop shooting.

Nadine Ohara - SF Bay Area/CA , Aug 23, 2009; 07:53 p.m.

As several have said, it is kind of like a wedding reception. However, here are a few pointers.

1. Older people are not so focused on themselves, so forget the dramatic/romantic type images typical at weddings of young, first time married people. Older people also have less flexibility too. In fact, stick to basic poses for the 'formal' portraits, and do it in good time. Older people don't like to be spending a lot of time posing for pictures. They'd rather be spending the time chatting with their friends and family. Be organized, have a plan, and execute the images in short order. Of course, there are exceptions, so keep aware.

2. Older people also usually have families--some of them large families. Many anniversary events I've photographed include an hour of posed family photos (whole group and sub groups) before guests ever arrive. This is so that the photos can be taken without distraction. Once the guests start arriving, your chances of getting groups together and photos done diminish rapidly.

3. You will want to get candids of guests talking, both totally candid and the 'smile at the camera' variety. Remember, older folks are used to smiling at the camera, and may even want the dreaded table shots of old. Ask them and do as they wish. Get lots of images of friends and family members--these are what they value.

Your will want to get any speeches and any activities--there could be a roast or slideshow (even if that doesn't offer much in the way of photo ops). Usually the couple's children give some kind of formal speech or two--even the grandkids. The grandkids may perform for their grandparents--sing, play the piano, do a skit, dance, etc.

The couple will usually have a cake, and so cutting the cake will be important as a photo op, as well as dancing together. They will probably speak as well. Detail shots will be appreciated but again, it isn't something older folks are 'used to'. Parts of their wedding may be re-enacted.

4. Some special pictures may be assembling the original wedding party (if they are there, and even if not all of them are there), or re-creating some of the poses from the couple's wedding album. For instance, if there was a shot with their hands and rings, do it again. Or re-create the pose on the cake topper on their original cake...

Aimee Pieters , Aug 25, 2009; 12:17 p.m.

Takes lots of pictures of their children and grandchildren and other family members. Find out ahead what types of combinations they want and make a list. As Nadine suggests, try to reassemble the original wedding party and re-create whatever you can from the original wedding. Ask to see the original album....-Aimee

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