Booth Shot Advice


I am new to participating in art fairs.  I just participated in my fourth one.  Two have been with Paragon and two have been at the MPA Artfest in McLean, VA.  I was able to buy a used tent and mesh walls in really good condition.  I know a lot of people use the wire walls which I don't have.  I also don't have the room to store the wire walls as I have to store everything in my studio.  I have entered a couple other shows and have either been wait listed or rejected.  I would appreciate any help with my booth shot.  I think I probably need to drag it out and set it up in the parking lot and try again.  Is it ok to use the mesh walls.  I am pretty strong but have back issues and have to hire someone to help me set up/lug etc at the fairs.  Before and after the fairs I have to load and unload on my own.  The first two shows I did really well at but the last two were not as successful.  This is one of the set ups I did well at.  

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  • It does look great. I'd still crop out some of the ground. Higher camera position shows more vacant ground, so it's a trade-off in my book. And when photographing it my camera position would be somewhere near the middle point in the artwork, which probably is a bit higher than waist-level as well as a bit lower than 56 inches. You might not always have someone as kind as Larry who will fix your images. Cropping is a simple fix, but not all image editing software offers perspective corrections.

    I also stand a little farther away from my booth to shoot it with a normal focal length lens. This factors into how high to position the camera as well.

    • What also matters is how tall is your booth. Some artists with very large paintings or photographs have booths much taller than the standard size. My booth is standard size, and yours looks to be standard size as well. If your top bar is close to 7 feet high, then I think 56 inches for camera height is too high.

      It just occured to me that you might not be using a camera that even has a viewfinder to look through in order to set up your picture. Are you looking at an LCD screen on the back of your camera, or through a viewfinder? You might become more conscious of parallel and converging lines if you look through a viewfinder. If you don't have one on your camera, then be more careful by looking at what the horizontal and vertical lines are doing before you shoot. Most of all, see what happens when you photograph your booth with a LEVEL camera. If your camera has a lens protruding from the front of it, use a small bubble level to see if your camera is level by placing it vertically against the lens so that the bubble will center. If your camera is at 56 inches height, most likely you are pointing the camera downward. The midway point between the top and bottom edges of your art will be more like 48 inches or even lower than that.

      Stepping back a foot or two will eliminate how much of the booth ceiling gets photographed as well as how much ground does. But leveling the camera will eliminate the ground as well.

      • Actually what matters is placing the camera at the approximate height of the juror's eyes so your booth looks like what it would look to someone standing in front of it.

        Larry Berman

  • Larry can certainly fix those converging lines for you in PhotoShop. But next time you do the booth pic, bend down and take it from waist level with the camera parallel to the ground rather than from standing tall and pointing the camera downward. That's why you have to correct the converging lines in the first place. But I can see that the right side is falling downward as well. You just need to see it in the camera viewfinder better by squaring it up as you take it. Then do fine tuning with software, like to also eliminate plenty of that asphalt on the ground by cropping it out.

    • Thanks, Larry did fix it for me :-).

      • looks great now!!!

    • Waist level is too low. It'll show too much of the interior of the roof. About 56 inches is what I've found to be the perfect camera height off the ground. BTW I've already fixed the booth. Maybe Jane will post a new version now.

      Larry Berman

      • Thanks Larry for your help!!

      • 301664991?profile=RESIZE_1024x1024

  • 301665788?profile=RESIZE_1024x1024I redid my booth today.  Followed the advice about not over loaded the walls and made sure everything was on the same level.  How is this?

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