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Great photos are essential for informing the press and the public about your nonprofit’s happenings. Here are some tips on taking a photo that will capture the press’ attention and help you get your event covered by the media:

1. Understanding resolution. The press likes to use high resolution photos; a high resolution photo is defined by its number of DPI or dots per inch. An easy way to find out whether or not your photo is high resolution is to determine how many DPI it has, a DPI over 300 means it is a high resolution photo.

To give you a better idea of a high resolution versus a low resolution photo look at the two images below, the clearer image is the high resolution. Notice the poor quality of the low resolution photo, it has a gritty appearance that we like to call pixilated. If an image looks pixilated when it is enlarged chances are it is a low resolution image.



2. Find the horizon line. When taking a photo, make sure the background is a solid horizontal. To get the horizon line, hold the camera level and keep it as straight as possible.

3. Plan ahead. At a large event, make a list of important donors, board members, community leaders that you want get on camera and keep the list handy. Don’t forget your clients. Work to specifically get photos of them.

4. Capture the moment. Although we can pose our subjects for the ideal photo, you can never recreate the moment that happens naturally. Whether this be a handshake, a ribbon-cutting or guest speaker, moments are more likely to capture media attention.

5. Taking a photo: When taking photos of people at events it is important to consider how the photo will appear to those who will ultimately see it. If someone was not actually at the event, would it be clear to them what the event was?

Here are some great examples of photos that capture the essence of various events. Some are posed photos and others are “action” shots. It is useful to have both types from every event if possible and appropriate.



Photo courtesy of Pierre Claeyssens Veterans Foundation

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Photo courtesy of Visiting Nurse & Hospice Care


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