Tips For Photographing a Memorable New Year's Eve

Times Square HDR 12/28/08

New Year’s is coming up and we’re all bound to be partying the day before. That means you’re sure to have your camera with you. Even if you’re not known as the person with the camera in your social circle, you can take images that later on people will look at and really show emotion over. Read more after the jump.

Your Angles

Change up your angles for different perspectives. After a while, looking at the same photos of your friends together over and over again at the same height level can get boring. Try raising your camera up above or lowering it a bit and having your subjects look down.

Keep in this mind especially if you’re shooting people during the Happy New Year’s kiss.

Don’t Use Flash Indoors Unless It’s Too Dark

There is a very good reason for this as flash is not only disruptive but it also washes out lots of gorgeous colors unless used properly. This goes double for DSLR users: never use on camera flash unless you’ve got slave units set up.

Instead, try cranking up your ISO if you can. For really cool effects, you can use slow shutter speeds.

If you’ve got a point and shoot, you really have no alternative but to use flash. Here’s the thing though: you can usually control how strong it is. Refer to your manual about this.

Go For the Candid Moments

Years of being an events shoot has taught me that candid photographs get the most stares and elicit the most emotions on a viewer’s face vs plain vanilla posed shot. Try to go for those candid photos of people laughing and enjoying their drinks or something funny happening on the dance floor.

A great tip is to keep your eyes on the goof or funny people of the party. They’re bound to do something that will grab everyone’s attention. It’s New Year’s Eve afterall.

Go For the Details

There are always little things that make people happy or that should be remembered. This is synonymous to a wedding where we shoot the shoes, the dress, the cake etc. At a New Year’s Eve party there is bound to be lots of drinks or really interesting decorations. Perhaps there may be a theme to the party in which case there are particular elements that help make it that theme. Try shooting those.

Everyone is bound to have a fun time, so they all want to remember everything.

Hold Your Camera With Two Hands

This can’t be emphasized more. Holding your camera with two hands will give you better stability which will most likely be needed if you’ve got a couple of drinks in you. To that end, other people around you will definitely have drinks in them and may stumble around and possibly knock your camera out of your hands. Holding it with two hands, or using the strap to keep the camera attached to your hand or on your neck will help with this. It also helps with eliminating the possibility of blurry photos due to inaccurate auto focus or hand movement.

Keep these in mind for the big 2010 and you’ll come back with some great shots. Why not share them in the comments below? Also, feel free to add your own tips.

Chris Gampat

Chris Gampat is the Editor in Chief, Founder, and Publisher of the Phoblographer. He also likes pizza.