SNAPPYS – Social Not Actually Planned Photography You Shoot

I’ve written before about event photography – in particular planning is critical for wedding photography or corporate shoots (and when you’re being paid) BUT, there are also times when you decide to take your camera along just to capture the moment and hopefully get some interesting shots – SNAPPYS – Social Not Actually Planned Photography You Shoot.

Case in point is our small annual Xmas poker game with a few mates, beers, a pizza or ten and combined with some good old fashioned mate sledging.  So, last night I grabbed the camera and just shot as the evening unfolded.

With any type of event you know ahead that there’s a basic storyline or timeline that will be followed.

  • Arrival and introductions (introduce the characters)
  • Food
  • Game commencement, rounds and player eliminations
  • The Finale 
  • The Award Ceremony
My thoughts are to wrap these individual images into a storyline and then create a single composite image – a bit like creating a cartoon strip.
With any set of images you want to create a common consistent style across the images so you’re not confusing your viewers – in many ways it’s similar to writing styles – that you don’t go from a chatty and conversational tone of voice to suddenly prim and proper.
For this shoot I want to move fast so I keep my equipment and setups very simple – also  so any of the lads can pick up the camera and shoot.
  • Canon 7D with 15mm-85mm kit lens 
  • 1 x 580 EXII Speedlight hot shoe mounted.
  • Manual setting – Shot f/5.6, 160ASA, 1/100 shutter with E-TTL

Post Production

Home later that night in Lightroom about 50 shots are quickly short listed to a dozen and then shorted listed again to seven ( I read somewhere that when compositing you want to use an odd number  – Rule of odds )

I use OnOne Perfect Photo Suite 6 software effects module and select “Nicely Toasted” from the Vintage Presets – it’s fast and gives the photos a different look and feel then the straight photographs.

Back in Photoshop all the photos are added as layers and a corkboard background image is Googled, copied and added.

The same process for some drawing board pins.  I could spend an hour just making these pins more realist but how much time do you want to spend?

I hand-write in some comments using my old Wacon tablet – this is an essential PC interface add on for anyone working with images.

The entire image is merged to create the end result.  All up it’s around fours hours work (do you still call it work if you’re doing it to learn?).

I post into my Facebook page and tag the lads – they love it.

Does it work better than the individual unprocessed shots?  Absolutely….well I think so.  What do you think?


Outpost Festival – Cockatoo Island – Part 1

It’s the first weekend of Summer here in Sydney and the weather is wet, windy and cold.

We’re on our way to Outpost “Street Art” Festival at Cockatoo Island – located smack bang in the middle on the western side side of Sydney Harbour

Shining In The RainPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

Even in the rain, a Sydney Ferry trip shines.

Never Trust the WeatherPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

At the Sydney Terminal the “Radiance Of The Seas” is docked – you can just imagine the tweets from the passengers – it’s not the pretty photos in glossy travel magazines.

Industrial RevolutionPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

Cockatoo Island was once a busy shipyard – now those old buildings are being turned into a great creative arts space.

No Tresspassing - Be Careful of the BullPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

Events like these are not possible without sponsors – I’m loving the Red Bull truck and their social media marketing.  A tweet message is responded within a few hours – it pays to be listening and interacting.

Declare or BewarePhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

At 45 I’m pretty removed from skateboard and street art culture but it was a Banksy satire I saw that first opened up awareness.  I find out later he’s collected by the likes of Brad Pitt – not that that makes any real difference to anything.  Like photography it’s the picture telling a thousand words.

OI YOU! Banksy In A BoxPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

Digital BrandalismPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

End of Part 1 – Link to Part 2

Outpost Festival – Cockatoo Island – Part 2



 Part 1

Neighbours from HellPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

The Neighbours From Hell

Tag MePhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

Embedding Ideas

Beneath My WingsPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

Time To Fly

Money Talks Sex SellsPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

Key Concepts

We Will Remember ThemPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia
Heading BackPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

As It Was

Now It’s Your Turn

Saturday, OK I’m all coffee’d up for the morning and back into the studio to begin some more testing – first thing audio recording; then some video then stills.

Now it’s your turn.  



Just write a 15 second script in the comments below and the most liked scripts during the week will be shortlisted and filmed. Can be anything as long as you’d be happy for your mum to see it.

Fine Art – When The River Flows

I’ve been experimenting with the styles of Dave Hill, Josh Rossil, Jill Greenberg. Jim Fiscus and Joey L with my own combination of HDR surrealist technical and black and whites.   The attempt of your digital photos to look like older photos, paintings or fine art but still retain that photography essence.

BUT, with any photo you want to get beyond the technical concerns and try and see what story is being told – to create an emotional response from your viewer that they – you – want to share.


Let the River FlowPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

Was aiming for that classic black and white high contrast shot.

TradegyPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

Going for classic black and white style here

Danger in the WoodsPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

ModernaPhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia

ExposurePhoto by Scott Maxworthymaxymedia


Special thanks model: Lisa – Twisted Betties.