- 7 years ago
- Wedding: November 2011
I just so happens that I needed to buy new insulated curtains for the upstairs of the house. It gets wicked hot/cold up there and that is the recommendation our HVAC man made. So, I don’t factor in the curtain cost as I bought them for the house and will use them before and after the photo booth.
What you need:
- HD webcam ($30)
- Sparkbooth Software ($60)
- PVC pipe and fittings (elbows, T’s, etc)
- Curtains (cheap-o Walmart ones will do)
- 2 Clamp lights (6-8 inches)-purchased off amazon for $6 each
- Power Strip
- Extension Cord
- USB switch-we used “Stealth Switch II” because we play World of Warcraft and had a few laying around that we use for the game.
- External Monitor-if you don’t want people touching your laptop set up and external monitor and when you have the USB switch set up people only see a button to press and a monitor
- Cord to connect external monitor to laptop
First, I had Mr. SheDayZ sketch out the booth. He is the tallest person attending our wedding so I needed it to be at least 6 foot 4 inches tall (he is 6′ 2″). I lined up myself, my sister and him and measured our width across (Mr. and I are broad shouldered) and decided it needed to be a minimum of 3.5 ft across in order to accommodate a fair amount. I realize that people will not be standing shoulder to shoulder so I used the measurement as a loose guide knowing people would naturally stagger, stair step, and crush in lol. As for DEPTH, we had him stand at a distance from the set up camera and measured the distance from the camera to him. I wanted to be sure people didn’t have to stoop down to get their faces in the frame. This distance is 7.5 feet.
So you have a finished frame that is 6.5 tall, 7.5 deep and 3.5 wide. Please note that the guest entrance side has no bottom bar. We did not want to risk people falling and I am disabled so I would not be able to get in otherwise lol.
Here is a picture:
Now, you are also going to need a component shelf. The depth of the shelf is going to widely vary based on your needs. Fr us, it needed to hold the external monitor, as well as the GIANT laptop I have. We had some old Rubbermaid closet shelves laying around so Mr. SheDayZ decided t use that. Close up:
So there is the frame/shelf info.
Next, we added our curtains. The curtains in the front part of the shelf should face the guests. If your curtains don’t have “sides” no worries. But if you have curtains similar to ours, give the folks something pretty to look at
**Note-dogs love to help and are handy with a mallet! >lol<
Continuing on, we added all curtains to end up with this:
This is what it looks like inside, after setting up the external monitor and Stealth Switch II:
This is the mess on the other side of the curtain. It’s like the wizard-don’t go back there LOL:
Let’s discuss lighting! We first put the lights up with no softening. This was bad. First, because it will blind the shit out of you; second, because it is too harsh on skin. So, AS A TEST we added some wax paper. Now, this WORKS for softening but it CANNOT be used as a solution. For one thing, it’s ugly as hell. The other problem is that it is a fire hazard. I have a background in photography, and Mr. SheDayZ in engineering. So, we will come up with a better solution. We also discovered that we needed to move the webcam up to the top bar. The best idea of lighting your webcam is to put light directly beside it. This means the camera does not have to continue to adjust for lighting. We made sure the bulbs point forward enough to project light to the subject as well.
When we come up with a less messy softening solution I will let you guys know.
So, now it’s time to test this setup!
We are going to hang a sign inside the booth telling people their pictures will be mailed to them in 2 weeks. We’re just going to use Costco. Cheap and Easy. I will mail them out with the Thank you cards. The whole set up fits into an Xmas tree bag and the curtains in a rubbermaid tub. 20 minute set up and done! Without counting curtain cost the whole project was under $150.