Instructables
Picture of DIY Portable Wedding Photo Booth
While planning for our wedding we decided that it would be great to use a photo booth as our guest book.  After looking at rental costs I decided to take it upon myself to build my own, and since I like projects like this I thought it sounded like a lot of fun!

Since our wedding was taking place several states away it had to be easily portable.  And since it was our wedding it had to look as professional as possible, and be fully automated.  With those basic requirements and a lot of work I ended up with something that everyone was happy with, including my wife!

Overview
1) Photo Booth Software
2) Equipment
3) Start Button
4) Booth Frame
5) Booth Panels
6) Conclusion

If you enjoy this instructable please check out some of my other projects at http://www.laserpup.com
 
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Step 1: DSLR Remote Pro

The first item that I solved was what photo booth software to use.  I wanted something that automated the entire process, you click a button and eventually your photos get printed out.  That is the limit to the user interaction that I wanted.

Since I was attempting to make due with many of the resources I had around the house I was limited to a windows operating system, and all of the apple solutions were no longer an option.  I couldn't justify a new computer for this project!  

After looking at the price and features I settled on DSLR Remote Pro.  This has a photo booth mode that looked perfect, with just enough customization to get what I wanted.  There were versions of the software for both Canon & Nikon cameras, and the price was very reasonable when compared to the cost of the commercial photo booth software I found.

Display Screens

The software allows you to design custom display screens with operating instructions to the people in the booth.  These custom screens allowed me to reuse some graphics from our wedding website, and although I'm sure no one noticed I thought that this was a nice touch.

I created 4 screens that the user would see with different static text. 
1) Start Screen
     Displays a quick instruction on how to start the photo booth.
2) Count Down Screen
     The screen image does not contain any text, but the software will display a countdown timer and show what picture it is currently taking.
3) Smile Screen
     Displayed before the camera snaps the picture for ~ 1 sec.
4) Processing screen
     Displayed after all the pictures have been taken, a progress will show as the final photo strip image is created and sent to the printer. 

Print Options

There print options provided by the software were overkill for what I needed, and it really only took a few test prints to get exactly what I wanted.  Four photos per page, with the set of four duplicated on one 4x6 print.  The idea here was that after the photos have printed our guests could cut the photo in half with a pair of scissors, taking one copy of the print with them and dropping the other copy in a box for us.

We'll take all of the copies and eventually frame them into what will be our guest book.  I did get away from one of my requirements here by forcing our guests to cut the print in half.  That is more interaction than I originally wanted, but really couldn't figure an easy way around it.  In the end it worked out just fine, and no one seemed to mind.

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This looks great, but aren't the PVC joints hard to disassemble? Did you do anything special to the PVC joints to make it easier to take apart?

themusicdan3 months ago

Great job! I realize this isn't that new anymore, but I'm using your booth as a template for my own raspberry pi photo booth, and I really appreciate your link to http://shop.dpsbargainbasement.com/ - It was a real lifesaver! Thanks again for posting such a great write up!

sharypic7 months ago

Congrats for this DIY photo booth!

About the printing part, you can use this DIY Photo Booth.

Moreover, by syncing your photos with sharypic, you can broadcast all photos big screen during dinner or any other moment of the wedding.

jberolo11 months ago
This was one the best DIY on making a photo booth, after spending about 3 hours searching on the web and google. Thank you so much. Now it will my turn to create my photo booth
Awesome job-- I just posted my own Photo Booth enclosure and am exploring light options. Did you just use your camera flash (I have the t3i, so basically the same model) or did you use other lights as well?
ulfilas1 year ago
Only 1 supplier in the UK :(
www.ixi-devices.com
dcivarson1 year ago
Love the concept, this would have been a hit at my wedding. Will keep it in mind for the next generation!!!
hekies1 year ago
Hi, would like to copy your booth but since it's a PVC construction did you have a problem on instability? did you add any other support to keep it stable?

Thanks
busybee24982 years ago
Nice! http://www.orlandophotobooth.net/
sleman2 years ago
DSLR Remote Pro was a bit pricey for me at $175 and seemed pretty complicated. I did some searching and found dslrbooth.com. As far as camera settings, much better to put the camera in manual once you've setup your lighting. Put shutter on 1/60 and experiment with ISO and aperature till the picture is bright enough. If you don't want to bother, just put it in Program mode.
polo7243 years ago
hi what was your setting on the camera? auto or manual, thanks
polo7243 years ago
HI Dohjoe nice photobooth, I'm working on 1 too for my daughter's 16th bday and I hope you don't mind if I copy your design. I like that push button idea but I'm clueless with wirings and soldering. How did you construct this big red button? any schematic or plan from start to finish and parts list, I would greatly appreciated, thank you.
I have recently built a photobooth for our upcoming wedding, and I decided to write my own photobooth software. It will be available as "open source" here soon probably on source forge. If anyone can use it, let me know! (its for canon cameras only)
maximus44443 years ago
dohjoe - Where did you get your arcade push button? I've been looking for one just like that but I can't find anything that looks like the "Big Red Button" concept.

Any ideas?
The best place i found to order this size push button was at spark fun http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9181
I was able to find the 3-way joints at Lowes.
nbua3 years ago
Probably a stupid question but I really need to know for the background .. What are the Dimensions.. How tall and how wide should the booth be ? I want to create a background and not sure what size the average photo booth is!

Thanks :)
trevormates3 years ago
Very cool. You can also get the 3-Way and 4-Way PVC joints from formufit.com. Another great source.
joeny19803 years ago
An idea, instead of leaving a pair of scissors out - I would suggest buy a perforator for a few bucks and just perforate all of your 4x6 photo paper before hand.

I would have liked if the alignment of the photos was a little better positioned (there was alot of negative space) maybe making the curtain area smaller would have helped to have better framed shots.

Cool project though, very nice.
Never would have thought to use a perforator... guess you'd just have to test it a couple times on a few printouts to preforate at just the right spot & not chop any of the photo, but it definitely saves you from imposing the the hassle of having folk cut (and potentially mess up with) the photos themselves. GREAT idea, joeny1980!!
Has anyone looked at Sparkbooth? Its a lot cheaper then DSLR Remote Pro.
lumlum3 years ago
hi! I am the president of a club on my college campus and thought it would be great to have one of these booths not only for taking pictures, but for also showing short video clips of our club and power points.

we have all the techonology, but need an easy to set up, portable booth like the one you built. would it be possible for us to buy the one you made or pay you to make one?

thanks and have a great day!
palkster3 years ago
Very nice. I built a booth for our wedding. I like your use of PVC as it looks alot more portable than our wooden one which now resides outside on our porch. Our frames looked similar. But I did build the main unit in two pieces which were held together with bolts and butterfly nuts. This allowed me to fit it into my Prius with two trips. The outside is paneling which I painted. Inside the booth, I had my MacBook running a program called Partybooth. I had an external monitor, and a hole big enough for a web cam. Below the monitor was a button similar to yours. It printed out 2 copies of 2x6 strips. One for them, one for our book. We also had a box of props which turned out to be alot of fun. The party lasted longer than expected because everyone wanted to do the photobooth again. It was a hit!
photo.jpegphoto-1.jpeg
Awesome colors palkster! Do you have an 'ible on this? What does the inside look like? Thanks!
I didn't take the time to document my work. Mainly because I started two days before the wedding, So it was thrown together at the last second. But the inside had a monitor with a webcam hole above and a start button below. On both sides of the monitor I cut out and installed fluorescent lights so people weren't dark blobs, and because our reception was at a park at night. We had a generator running to power the booth's peripherals as well as the other lights and music at the party. Sadly, after taking up space on our porch for four months, I dissembled it and the parts are now waiting to be used on some future project.
johnwu palkster3 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
palkster johnwu3 years ago
Dear John Wu,
After searching the web for the best photo booth software, I decided that Party Booth was the all out winner. It had every feature I needed, was SO easy to use and affordable. I hope your software gets great attention because it made our reception a blast!
johnwu palkster3 years ago
Update: the application is now named Spark Booth
mhudnall3 years ago
Very nice! Our friends built a photo booth for their wedding as well, only out of plywood, metal framing and it had white-board on the outside so folks could write messages. Inside had a bench and a touch screen.

Cost was kept relatively low because things like the printer, software, and high end camera was already owned by the bride's brother, who does event photography. They were even able to use it again for when the bride's brother got married two weeks later. Plus it makes appearances at all the parties.

4800678946_9cedc7031e.jpg4800045125_170c7aa51a.jpg4800043541_4ff96fedc7.jpg4800679620_fbf029d1ac.jpg4741217794_4326f3d378.jpg4741243992_323711962d.jpg4943967716_25dd53d475.jpg
I love this mhudnall! Do you have an 'ible on this? Thanks!
firefhtr93 years ago
Do you happen to remember which model PictureMate you used?
jongscx3 years ago
I love it when nerds get married. It gives me hope for humanity's future...

Another idea is that you could put a dry-erase tablet and tethered marker inside of the booth, so that the subjects could scrawl out a message :-D

LOVE that idea! Dry erase tablet! Going on my list! Thanks!
hammer98763 years ago
Very nice! Some people get very creative with only four photos and can actually act out a story line. Well, maybe not with the addition of alcohol.
The alcohol might make it a bit more interesting of a story line... in my group of friends it would be R rated at least! lol! Great comment!
gnume3 years ago
did any one try to use one way mirror for the camera ?
Wow! Really neat idea! I am going to do some research into that and see if it would be a better alternative. Good idea! Thanks!
RedMeanie3 years ago
Awesome Idea!! Ive always wanted something like this for parties. Also Great work on the Instructable itself!

What did the software run you? Also can you can you give a Ballpark figure on total costs?

Nice Work!
dohjoe (author)  RedMeanie3 years ago
The construction cost of the booth (not electronics) was ~$225 for all of the fabric/pvc/etc. The retail price of the software is $175, although they do offer a fully functional 30 day trial.
Smitty75 dohjoe3 years ago
I bought the DLSR software but having trouble setting the
photo size . Could I ask your help on settings ?
papadoo1atgmail.com
Thanks,
Smitty75
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