From Contributing Blogger Sofia Angeli:
You see them in most events these days. And they’re often there to add fun to the occasions. They’ve actually become a trend for parties, especially wedding receptions. Photo booths have definitely come a long way from the early kiosks that were mainly there to provide instant ID photos and, at times, fun to kids and kids-at-heart. But how did the photo booth reach its new status of becoming almost a staple in weddings today?
A bit of history
The curtained photo booth that most people remember today is attributed to Russian Anatol Josepho. The one standing on Broadway, New York City, USA in 1925 is said to be the first of the many photo booths to come later.
In those days, digital cameras were never thought of and it took days for regular consumers to have their photos printed out. But this novelty machine generated photo prints in about 10 minutes. For those who needed to have their faces on ID cards, necessary documents, application forms, etc., it was a very welcome convenience. And for those who wanted a new kind of entertainment or fun souvenir, well, it was also a very welcome convenience.
Photo sticker booths
The Japanese introduced a version of the photo booth that made the machine more entertaining than it was before. In the 1990s, the photo sticker booth came about in Japan and also became a trend in South Korea, Taiwan, the Philippines and other Asian countries. It was also introduced in Australia, Europe and North America.
This opened up the people’s minds to the idea of the photo booth being used mainly for fun and souvenir purposes. For a minimal amount, you can have your solo or group photo taken and have them printed on sticker paper. You can also pick the design or background that you want.
The main reason why most adults didn’t fully embrace this purikura, the Japanese shortened word for “print club,” is that it features mostly animé designs that are quite juvenile for the tastes of many. Customers of these Japanese photo sticker booths are mostly teenagers.
Photo booths and engagement rings
Then came someone who had this ingenious idea of using the enclosed photo booth as the venue for his marriage proposal. Now, it’s become a logical choice for those who’d like to ask someone to marry them.
As long as you’ve got good timing, the photo booth will provide you an image capture series of the surprise, happiness and, possibly, tears when you popped the question and presented the ring to her. And it provides a good amount of privacy, too.
Wedding fun and favours
As mentioned earlier, the photo booth is now a famous entertainment alternative in wedding celebrations. Most photo booth rentals can now even offer you a selection of outputs – usually black-and-white prints, stickers and full-colour photos.
You can use them not just for you and your guests to get wacky photos with props and a themed backdrop. Some photo booth services also offer image albums that can replace the old-school store-bought guest book. Your guests can write their wishes and notes to you on that album. You can even hold a contest for the most hilarious pose or any other category that would go with your theme.
Decades ago, you probably won’t see photo booths and weddings in the same sentence. But now, this image capture machine attracts the second longest queue in a wedding – next to the buffet.
If you’re considering having a photo booth in your own wedding reception, talk to the rental company about your theme and your plans for the party. Remember how the current photo booth craze came about, and don’t be surprised if they can offer you some ideas you never thought were possible.
About the author
Sofia Angeli is a PR & communications consultant for companies in various industries. In particular, she brings her writing skills and passion for travel, culture, arts and lifestyle, including wedding planning and engagement rings, to the online world.