How to set up a remote controllable photo booth

What you'll learn

1.How to setup a basic photo booth
2.How to set up your camera to take photos unattended
3.How to use the Wi-Fi mode with Triggertrap Mobile

Want to step away from the camera and let your subjects take their own photos? A remote controllable photo booth is a great way of getting some fun and relaxed photos with very little effort!

What you'll need

  • Camera
  • Sturdy tripod
  • Lighting setup
  • Backdrop
  • Two smart devices with Triggertrap Mobile app
  • A way of attaching your device to your tripod
  • Triggertrap Mobile kit for your camera
  • Wi-Fi network
  • Gaffer tape

A bit of theory

The fundamentals behind a photo booth are rather simple: You need a camera on a tripod which can be set to take photos unattended, some sort of lighting and a background.

You need to be sure that the camera settings, focus and position are going to remain the same so that each shot looks very similar. If the camera is set to auto exposure and auto focus, the exposure and focus is going to vary tremendously, resulting in lots of unusable shots. If you use manual focus and manual exposure, you can be sure that each shot is going to be in focus and well exposed.

Depth of field really comes into play in situations like this.There’s no point setting your photo booth camera to snap away at f/1.8, giving you a very shallow depth of field, as chances are people won’t be standing exactly where you expect them to. Also, if there’s more than one person in the frame they won’t all be in focus. Using a small aperture such as f/8 or f/11 will give a pretty large depth of field and will therefore help to ensure everyone in the frame is nice and sharp.

A clean background is also a crucial part of any photo booth. A busy, messy background can be really distracting. If you can get people standing some distance from the backdrop, the backdrop should blur slightly and become even more clean and less distracting.

Some sort of lighting setup is very helpful. This does not need to be particularly complicated. In fact, it can be as simple as a flash on your camera. A good tip: if you are using flash and have a white ceiling, bounce your flash off of the ceiling to give a more even and flattering light than aiming directly at the subject. The lighting allows you to keep each frame fairly consistent and also ensures you can use a smaller aperture to get your larger depth of field.

The key to a really successful photo booth is putting the trigger in the hands of the people in front of the camera. The best way to do this is by handing the people in the frame something they will understand how to use! There’s no point handing them a fancy radio transceiver with half a dozen buttons, knobs and switches as it’s only going to confuse people. Triggertrap Mobile’s Wi-Fi mode can be installed on an iPod Touch (as well as several other iOS and Android devices) and has only one button, so it’s clear how to use it.

You will need a Wi-Fi network, so some forward planning is going to be necessary. There may be a Wi-Fi network at the venue you can use. If not, consider using an Ad Hoc network or a personal access point such as a Mi-Fi or one of your smart devices.

Setting up

The finished setup

Capturing the photos