The Candid Capturers
“My style of wedding photography tends to be pretty nontraditional,” says Boston-based shutterbug Zac Wolf, who’s been photographing nuptials for almost six years. So it was no surprise that a few years ago, he began inviting a second shooter along just to snap candid photos of the guests. “It would be someone standing there with a tripod, telling people to be silly,” says Becca Goldring, Wolf’s girlfriend and business partner, of the early days. Eventually, the concept evolved into the Danger Booth, an open-air photo booth with a freestanding unit that includes a touchscreen, a flash, and a printer. It may be a little more technologically advanced than Wolf’s original idea, but the concept remains the same: to capture people having fun.
What are the benefits of a booth?
Z.W. A wedding photographer tends to focus on the more-active guests, so people who don’t like to dance may not be included. A photo booth captures everyone, and people tend to get sillier there than they do anywhere else. I almost feel like I started doing photo booths to avoid doing table shots— to keep things fresh and to let guests be themselves. You get to see Grandma having fun, instead of standing solemnly next to a half-eaten plate of chicken.
What are some common questions that couples have?
B.G. People want to know if it’s an actual box. We’re working on being more obvious that it’s actually open-air. They want to know about backdrops, props. People are always curious about the prints and about how much space we need.
So how much space do you need to set up?
B.G. We set the booth up in our kitchen when we had a birthday party for our cat. We’ve also set it up at weddings for 100 people and for 300-plus people, and at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center for 10,000 guests. So we’ve really done it all.
What do people use for backdrops?
Z.W. We tend to get pretty crafty, DIY couples. On our Pinterest boards they’ll find slick and not-too-difficult homemade backdrops. DIY is mostly what we encourage, because it’s the most interesting. One of our favorite money-saving tricks is to use a shower curtain. We did it for a networking event, and we found a shower curtain that matched our branding. Some companies will sell backdrops for up to $500, so that’s our pro tip: the patented Danger Booth secret.
What are some of your favorite backdrops?
B.G. We love everything from a classic American flag to an intricate backdrop made with live flowers. Marquee letters are a flashy way to show off your initials, and nothing says “party” like a backdrop of crêpe paper garlands or floor-to-ceiling balloons in your event’s color scheme.
The Danger Booth doesn’t come with props. Why not?
Z.W. We didn’t want the same generic props used over and over again. We don’t want you to look at your wedding and say, “We just did the same stuff with the same mustaches.” We want it to be a unique experience each time.
Anything that you think is off-limits?
B.G. Excessive nudity [laughs].
Z.W. Or if there were like 500 mustaches, maybe. We just want people to have fun though.
B.G. We remind people that the photos are going on the Internet.
Why do people go crazy for photo booths?
B.G. There’s less pressure. In the booth, people can take as many photos as they want. If they want to sit there and take 200 photos, that’s fine—unless there’s a line. There’s one guy at every wedding who we’ll see 1,000 times posing with his sandwich.
Stock your photo booth with these props, recommended by Zac Wolf and Becca Goldring.
Fake Beards: With varying lengths, styles, and colors, they ensure hilarity with both male and female guests.
Marquee-Style Letters: Oversize bride and groom initials add a personal touch.
Animal Masks: Horse or unicorn heads make for some outrageous photos that will catch you off-guard.
Confetti: Colorful and exciting, it brings action to your photos.
Pet-Head Cutouts: It’s a great way to incorporate your furry friend into the big day.
For additional planning tips, check out more Wedding Experts »
Getting married? Start and end your wedding planning journey with Boston Weddings' guide to the best wedding vendors in the city.