Read on for some tips from the team at Move...
The joys of the internet! Have a browse on Pinterest, Instagram, ad campaigns and other fitness sites to see the way they have displayed their venues and classes. You want your photos to look professional, capture the feel and vibe of your business and inspire others to try it out!
What sort of camera are you going to use? DSLR? Compact digital camera? The camera on your phone? Whatever your choice, get to know the features it offers. Higher spec cameras often have modes for capturing activity, and can help with lighting and focus. However you may also be surprised with the settings your standard camera phone has to offer!
What/Who are you going to photograph?
Are you going to take photos of your group exercise class? A personal training session? A bootcamp outdoors? A shot showcasing the amazing gym equipment you have? It’s important to get a good range of images that represent the atmosphere of your venue.
What do people love most about your venue? Is your pool state of the art? Do you have a lovely Sauna and Steam Room? Do you have a great cafe and reception where members can relax after a hard session? Don't forget the people too! It’s also nice to have photos of the exterior of your venue - it can be helpful for members to know where you are located and give them an idea of what your venue is like.
Always ask anyone who may be in your picture for permission - privacy is important and you don’t want any of your members to be featured if they aren’t happy for their photo to be online for the public to see.
Tips for taking activities and venue shots
So you’re taking a photo of the class you run, a member in the middle of an activity or your gym floor. There are few things you can keep in mind to make sure your photo is as professional as possible:
- Capture the full range of motion or exercise - someone doing a full squat will always look better than a half squat, a full yoga position will look better than someone half way into it!
- Timing - most movements or reps will have a point where they are locked, this would be the best time to take the picture, if it is in the middle of a rep you run the risk of it being blurry. If you’re struggling to keep the camera still a tripod or timer may help!
- Get a good angle - if you’re taking a photo of a class, play with angles to see what you think looks best. If they are all low down on the floor in a plank position experiment with taking the photo from their level. Sometimes a shot from the side, behind, or just off centre looks better than your standard face on shot.
- Focus - are you taking a photo of a group? Are you taking a photo of a group, but focusing on one person in particular? Are they doing an activity alone? You can play with filters on phones or focus on higher spec cameras to have someone in the foreground and background. You can experiment with having people going out of the frame, the shot doesn’t have to capture their whole body.
- Expression - what feel do you want your photo to have? Fun? Happiness? Hard Work? Satisfaction? Try to avoid people looking straight at the camera and posing. Capturing them in their actual state of exercise will look much more natural, an easy smile, exhausted grin, or look of sweaty concentration will go a long way!
- Lighting - natural light is always best, so try and pick a good time of day - if you’re taking photos outside, a time when the sun is lower will normally work better. If you’re taking photos inside, face away from any windows, taking a photo of someone in front of a bright window never turns out well. Avoid featuring any switched on lights in your photos too. You can experiment with flash if need be, however be careful as sometimes it can make your photos look unprofessional or over exposed.
- Take a lot of photos - you may need to take a fair few to find ones you are happy with, sometimes cameras have burst settings which are great for capturing physical movement, and you can then pick the best ones that aren’t blurry!
- Fill the frame - bear in mind you don’t want to be too far away from the person in your photo, or the piece of equipment. If you are focusing on something in particular you don’t want too much background. Make sure you get closer to the subject and fill the frame. Try not to use zoom too much if you don’t have a high spec camera - this can end up reducing image quality.
- Editing - you can always crop photos afterwards on apps or on the computer, and you can add filters too, or lighten them if they are too dark. Play with your images until you are happy they look professional and will promote your business well.