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Chris Smith is a professional photographer in Charleston, SC. A photographer for almost 30 years, Chris offers a superior knowledge of creating perfect images. For many years, Chris has been the official photographer of the Family Circle Cup, a professional tennis tournament held annually in Daniel Island's tennis stadium

How to Shoot a Greenscreen Event

Last week I had a really neat assignment in San Antonio, TX!!!

I’ve photographed several assignments for the US Grains Council recently. So I was excited when they asked if I could handle a very cool promotional project they had in mind. The main trade-show they attend each year is the Commodity Classic. This is America’s largest farmer-led, farmer-focused convention & trade show! They asked me if I’d come to San Antonio, TX, and create a greenscreen photo oportunity at one end of their booth to attract attention and draw interest.

Being an international organization, we created 5 different digital backgrounds for them that folks could choose from, each representing parts of the world where the USGC has strong influence: Japan, Malaysia, Morocco, Panama, and China. Individuals, couples, families, groups of co-workers…everyone had a BLAST, and our booth was a huge hit! Their prints were then mounted into custom folders that also served as a brochure, giving lots of information about the US Grains Council.

My setup was designed to be simple, efficient, and above all…wireless. The trade-show had over 7,000 attendees!!! We didn’t want anyone tripping on any wires. Lighting consisted of a gang of SB-800 speedlights, all triggered wirelessly via RadioPoppers from my SB-900 master. I photographed everyone with a Nikon D4, which instantly sent the images to my laptop using the WT-5 wireless transmitter. At the laptop, participants could pick their favorite image, and choose their background. Then literally 13 seconds later their beautiful high-resolution 5×7 print popped out of the DS40 dye sublimation printer. Everyone LOVED the instant gratification of walking away with their photo in hand.

The event was a lot of fun for me, and a huge success for my client. We’ve already talked about doing it again next year!!!