Missouri State University

Guidelines for Coverage of Special Events Including Dinners and Award Ceremonies

Our goal is to get the best photograph possible.  With your help and these simple guidelines we can make that happen.

  • The photo area should be free of anything you do not want in the photograph.
  • Avoid windows and highly reflective objects in the background of the area such as mirrors, shiny wallpaper, projection screens, and light fixtures.
  • Placing a curtain in the presentation area is a great help if it's clean and big enough to cover up distracting backgrounds or objects. (Please avoid the use of white curtains.)
  • Avoid setting the photo area in a high traffic area such as the front of the buffet line.
  • In most cases the photographer should be positioned within ten feet of the subjects with no obstructions between them and the subjects.
  • It helps to have the presentation area away from the speaker's podium although if the speaker and the presenter are the same person it is permittable; however, the above items still apply.
  • Let the presenters know that a photograph will be taken and to turn and face the photographer and that they should also pose the awardees so that they are facing the photographer.  The awardees are usually scared or nervous and not fully aware of their role in the photo process.  Usually if they see the first person getting an award pose the correct way then they tend to follow that lead...so it's important that at least the first presenter makes a good show of it. (See the picture above, this shows excellent positioning.)
  • Share this information with the presenters and ask that they do not move from the presentation area until after the photograph has been taken.
  • Photographs will not be taken in darkened rooms such as those used for PowerPoint presentations until the lights are turned back on.  If the photographer has to use a flash unit it will be disruptive and annoying in this type of situation.  Since it's impossible to judge how much light will be at a particular event it will be up to the photographer to make the determination at that time; however, see the next bullet.
  • Photographic Services will preview (consult) an event ,if requested, and make suggestions as to improving the quality final images.  Please schedule this well before the event and not the day or night of the event when it is too late to make corrections.
  • Obviously there will be exceptions that are unavoidable and we do understand that.  We'll adjust as needed to do what is best for that particular situation.

As with most endeavors advanced planning will greatly improve the quality of the final product.  Should you have any further questions or concerns please contact us at ext. 65498 or e-mail us at photographicservices@MissouriState.edu.