Customize “Photos With Santa” Displays With Popup Backdrops
Pictures with Santa are a valued tradition for many families. From the time the first signs of Christmas show up in stores, kids begin to eagerly anticipate their chance to chance to meet their favorite Jolly Guy. If you are a retail store, country club, or family attraction that is lucky enough to “host” a visit by Santa himself, you want to make sure you are setting the perfect scene for those soon to be cherished photos.
You may not be able to afford the elaborate multi-media “Winter Wonderlands” that many of the large retail shopping malls construct annually, but you can still create magical photo opportunities with a custom Christmas backdrop and few carefully selected props. A custom printed popup backdrop allows your pictures with Santa photo set to be unique to your event or venue and enable families to capture one-of-a-kind moments with Santa that they would not be able to get anywhere else.
Backdrop displays on popup frames are self-standing, so that you can set up your Santa photo wall anywhere. Unlike a tripod and crossbar backdrop setup, a popup frame has no exposed hardware when setup. It creates a clean, professional look that has a footprint that is less than 12” deep in most cases. It also creates a safer photo environment with no tripod legs for anyone to trip over.
When the holiday season is over, the frame and your backdrop curtain packs into small duffle bags, and only take up as much storage space as a set of golf clubs.
Most importantly, however, by ordering a fabric popup backdrop for your pictures with Santa event, your design options are limitless. You also keep things fresh by changing your photo set from year to year (or every few years), all you need to do is purchase a new fabric wrap/curtain. The ability to interchange designs also allows you to have different curtains for other photo events throughout the year, such as photos with the Easter Bunny.
Planning Your Pictures With Santa Backdrop
One of the first things you will need to decide is the size you want your photo set to be. Keep in mind that if you are purchasing a backdrop that is attached to a portable frame, you must work within the sizes available for the frame style you want. Typically, popup (expanding frame) backdrops are available in 10x8 or 8x8 configurations. We are pleased that Shows To Go Backdrops offers the most extensive selection of popup backdrop frame sizes, with widths from 5ft up to 17ft, and heights of either 8ft or 10ft. You can also mix and match backdrop sizes to create a larger scene.
A background/backdrop area that spans less than 10ft is not recommended for Santa photos because it will become difficult to capture images of multiple children or a family without the field of vision of the camera extending beyond the edges of the display. Maintain the Christmas magic, by making sure other parts of the room are not going to show up in the photos.
After you have your sizing confirmed, you can begin the brainstorming of your scene. You can keep it traditional (Santa by the fire or perhaps a snowy Winter forest), or you can let your imagination run wild to create a unique Pictures with Santa opportunity. Who says Santa can’t be hanging out at the beach, visiting a rainforest, or relaxing in a land of candy cane striped unicorns? With a custom printed backdrop, there is no limit to colors, designs, or detail.
When planning your photo scene, always be aware of where Santa will be sitting or standing for photos. You don’t want an important part of your design getting hidden by Santa’s chair.
Getting Your Design Completed
Bringing your vision to life with an illustration or photograph that is suitable for printing in a large format will be the next step. You might be lucky enough to have a graphics department at your disposal or have the talent and software to handle creating the graphics you need. If not, it is easy to hire professional freelance artists from websites such as Upwork or Guru. Post your project details, and interested designers will come to you by bidding on your job.
Hiring a graphic designer may not be necessary at all. You may find that the perfect image for your “Photos With Santa” display is already designed and ready to be printed as a custom fabric backdrop.
If you want a classic holiday scene, you might be able to find what you are looking for among Shows To Go Backdrops’ “Designed and Ready” section. From a Christmas living room scene to a north pole landscape, the graphics are pre-formatted and ready for printing. Select the graphic you want, choose your size, and order right from the site. All you need to add is Santa.
You can also get unique, “ready to print” Christmas illustrations and photo-realistic scenes from Shutterstock. They have millions of graphics to choose from and a very advanced search feature on their site that allows you to narrow down options to find your perfect image(s). If you find a graphic you like, you can purchase it in a high-resolution format and submit it to the backdrop printing company. If you decide to purchase your display from Shows To Go Backdrops, there is no need to purchase the image yourself. All you need to do is note the image number, and our designers can obtain the proper image size and format the graphic for your Christmas scene photo backdrop. You get a “custom” look, without the cost or time of hiring a graphic designer.
The above two options are a great time saver for when you have a tight deadline for an upcoming Santa appearance event. It eliminates the time that a custom illustration can take, which can sometimes add weeks or months to a project.
Does Santa Need A Sponsor?
Should you have your company or sponsor’s logo in Santa’s backdrop scene? We get asked that question a lot. The answer depends on the goal of your “meet Santa” experience, and whether or not families are paying for the photos. In our opinion, if you are asking someone to pay for the picture, leave the blatant marketing plugs off the image.
If the Santa picture station is part of a broader family experience or event (i.e., sporting event, fundraising gala, Christmas light display at a zoo), then incorporating a mascot, logo or other branded imaging into the background may be a welcomed by guests. It helps to reinforce that your photo experience is not just another chance for a photo with Santa, it is a unique opportunity that is special to your event.
Giving the public a free chance to snap some selfies with Santa is also a time when some branding or sponsor logo placement would be perfectly acceptable. The key is to make sure your design does not get dominated by branding. Sitting Santa down in front a step and repeat background with logos plastered all around might be overkill. Unless of course, your Santa experience has a “North Pole goes Hollywood” Red Carpet theme to it, in which case a step and repeat is a perfect choice.
Whatever design route you choose, you are sure to delight families, and get on Santa’s “nice list,” with a unique display that will make their Santa photo experience fun and memorable.