New Year’s Eve is the world’s biggest party! Big parties come with a lot of expectations and a big desire by party guests to make the most of the evening. Whether you are at a crowded party with tons of people or spending an intimate night with family and friends, below are several tips to help you capture these celebratory moments and ring in the new year!
Make a list of shots
No matter how long you spend preparing, it will seem like New Year’s Eve is over in a flash. Make sure you get the shots you want the most by writing a quick list before the party starts as a reference to keep you on track.
Try new angles
Capture the party from above, to show your fellow guests a new perspective, or try a wider shot to capture everyone’s full outfits; it’s one of the only nights of the year when everyone will be dressed to the nines. Also, make sure to use the entire frame to add a new composition and storytelling element to your image. Another creative method you can try is panning or zooming in while you release the shutter; this will give youa unique blur effect in your image (use a shutter speed around 1/15).
Bring a tripod
Make sure to bring a tripod to keep the camera extra still when capturing fireworks, confetti falling at midnight or to keep consistent framing if you plan to set up a photo booth.
Make sure your subjects aren’t overtaken by shadows by putting any twinkly lights behind you. Also – in the low, indoor light – avoid using the on-camera flash. The harsh light will wash out faces in photos taken at night, and it could disrupt the candid fun. It’s also important to consider the lighting when shooting indoors – you may need to adjust your white balance to fluorescent or tungsten. If you do plan to use a flash, use a High Speed Sync flash to create a unique quality in your photographs. One of the more interesting and creative uses of High Speed Sync is to use the Rear Curtain Sync mode; which is very effective when capturing moving subjects and using longer shutter speeds. The result is a flash-frozen object, accompanied with light trails and motion blur. Freezing moving objects like people dancing will add to the image’s expressive quality and vibrancy. Try to experiment with this technique before the party so you can use it more creatively and deliberately.
Beware the bubbly
New Year’s Eve can get pretty festive pretty fast. Be prepared for the unexpected champagne shower by ensuring your camera is stored in a safe, dry place when you’re not holding it.
Whether you’re hosting a get-together or attending a party, don’t forget the little details that make the event so memorable. Make sure to take a few shots of the decor, accessories and party favors before the night is over. Also, set an alarm on your phone for 15-30 minutes from midnight to make sure there’s room on your memory card, your batteries are charged, and your position is set for the big moment. It only comes once a year!