What does conference and event photography entail?

Conference and event photography is one of our main specialities and we just happen to cover all of the Routes events held worldwide.  This conference was being held in Nursultan as it is an important part of the Silk Road area and attracts a lot of airline traffic.  Our job here was to cover all aspects of the conference from the registration; keynote Arena; exhibition area; awards evening; cultural events; airline meeting halls; and mostly networking wherever it took place.  I used to think that these conferences were the same as all conferences where people attend, shake hands, leave and forget it happened but I soon realised that the people attending these airline conferences are the actual decision makers in their respective businesses whether they be airlines, airports or cities.  New airline routes and destinations are decided and confirmed at these events so there is a lot at stake and a lot that actually happens at these events.

What to consider before photographing an international conference?

There are a few obvious things to consider when heading off to photograph and event or conference in another country:

  • passport and visa requirements – these should be done as soon as possible as I had to travel 1300kms to hand my application in so this needs to be considered
  • airlines – usually you are working with a tight budget but you also have to consider which airline will get you there with the least amount of hassles such as long layovers where you are stuck in the airport for long periods of time.  I chose Turkish Airlines as they had long layovers but they give you options of free 4-5* hotels to stay in or free city tours in Istanbul.  I chose the hotel so that I could do my own exploring and Istanbul is the most magnificent city to explore
  • equipment – do you have the correct plug adaptors for the region that you are traveling to.  Do you have all the cameras; lenses; batteries; chargers; speedlights etc that you will need for that particular conference.  Another thing to consider here is do you have too much gear as you will be lugging all of this gear along with your luggage through airports and hotels?
  • do you know the client and what they are wanting from you as every conference is different and every client has their own specific requirements regarding the photography brief.  Know this before you leave as you may need to be taking specialised gear.
  • more tips on photographing conferences to follow in future blog post

Here is another blog on photographing an international conference Routes Europe