If your silent auction items are similar to many galas, at least one of the items donated will be from a photographer. It’s often a free sitting with one 8″X10″ print.
Although the item is usually displayed nicely and the photographer often has a lovely image of their work available to view, it rarely sells for top dollar.
I’ve been seeking a way to improve this donation and recently read something that offers a fresh twist on this traditional (but tired) silent auction item.
Christopher Duggan is a photographer in New York, NY. His company is Threshold Visions and he shoots a lot of weddings. His blog post that caught my eye (a post which might be buried with other posts by the time you read this) talked about a family photo party.
The gist is that he reunited with some friends via Facebook, and one of them asked if he would do a Photo Party at her house. She offered to organize the get-together, inviting 10 to 15 families over so he could take family portraits for everybody. He thought it sounded like fun and agreed. His finished work shows families and kids in natural settings, indoor and out.
What if you asked a photographer for this type of silent auction item donation?
Here’s the $64,000 question: If a sitting is usually a 3-hour or 4-hour process in the studio, would a photographer be willing to visit a home and have the opportunity to shoot several families, albeit in a more candid way?
Personally, I think families would enjoy this.
The advantage of shooting in a studio is that the photographer can control the light and weather is irrelevant. It is more challenging for a photographer to work outside.
But on the flip side, if the photographer is willing to shoot on location at someone’s large home and yard, he or she might be able to sell more finished prints because there are more customers in one place.
Furthermore, these are people with children, who are more likely to use photography packages in the coming years. That’s a win-win prospect.
You just need to ensure someone with the right, larger home / yard will host the Photo Party.
And the right photographer who wants to give it a shot (so to speak 😉 ).