The first step is to set up your backdrop. Remember to try and give yourself a fair bit of distance between the camera and the background. If you aim to give your self between 12-18ft you’ll have plenty of room to get your subjects away from the background.
Once your background is set, mark a spot a few feet from the background using some tape to show people where to stand. This is particularly helpful for keeping things in focus! Keeping some gaffer tape in your kit bag is super useful for this.
Setting up the camera
Set your camera securely on the tripod and then extend the legs so that the camera is roughly at eye level. You might need to think a little about what focal length to use on your camera, there’s a great resource here showing how focal length changes the appearance of peoples faces.
Set the camera on manual exposure with a reasonably large aperture (f/8-f/11) to ensure a good depth of field.
Next, set the camera to manual focus. Try and get someone to stand on your marked spot so you can set your focus accurately, otherwise, tilt the camera down and focus on the tape you’ve marked the spot with.
How you light the photo booth is really down to you. To keep it really simple, if you have a white ceiling, make the most of it. Put the flash on the camera and aim it up at about 45 degrees. The light from the flash will hit the ceiling and bounce back, lighting your subjects in a much nicer way than pointing the flash directly at them would achieve.
If you want to take this further and set up off camera lighting, you’ve got loads of options available. David Hobby at Strobist has created an amazing resource for learning off camera lighting, be sure to check out Strobist 101.
Setting up the Wi-Fi
Your camera should be ready to go at this point, but now you need to think about putting the trigger in the hands of the people in front of the camera. One easy way to do this is attach one smart device to your camera and have a second available for the subject to use as the trigger. First you need to connect both smart devices to the same Wi-Fi network.
Once both devices are connected, load up the Triggertrap Mobile app on both. On the device which you’re going to be connecting to the camera, open up the Wi-Fi Slave mode and on the device which you’re going to be handing to people open up the Wi-Fi Master mode. On the Master device, simply flick the switch to on. Then on your Slave device, select your Master device from the list and the two should be connected.
Setting up the Triggertrap Mobile Kit
Now that the app is all set up, you need to plug everything in. Connect your camera connection cable to your camera, then to the dongle. Finally plug the dongle into the headphone port of your smart device that you’ll be using as the Wi-Fi Slave. Press the big red button on the Wi-Fi Master and the camera should trigger. You can use a clamp to connect your Slave device to the tripod to keep it safe.
Top Tip If you’re going to be set up for some time, think about adding a power supply for your devices, be it a mains adapter or a portable battery charger.