Whether you’re a competitive racer or a recreational runner, one of the most unique aspects of participating in the exciting events of the Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend is capturing all the fun on film! From the magical backdrops, to the showcasing of a carefully-crafted running costume and of course, those emotional moments of triumph and accomplishment at the finish line, here are five tips for race day photo success:
#1: Wear Your Race Bib in the Correct Position
While this may sound like a no-brainer, this is probably the #1 reason that runners miss out on great race day photos! Follow the directions supplied by runDisney, and be sure to wear the bib pinned to the front of your body, without any decoration blocking your bib numbers. For official race photos, this is how your pictures are identified, so the easier it is to see your bib, the more of your photos will be found, even if you are not the central focus of the image.
#2: Practice a Default Pose
Having a standard pose to strike at a moments notice will come in handy if you happen to lose track of where you are on the course and are caught off guard by a photographer. This advice also goes for any character stop pictures you may make – there’s nothing more awkward than a photo where you look uncomfortable! Bonus points? Match your default pose with the character of the costume you are wearing, and if possible, use a prop to make an impact! What’s better than lifting a frying pan like Rapunzel, or “reading” a book like Belle?
Extra tip: be sure your default pose is (A) appropriate for a family-themed race 😉 (B) Non-obstructive to other runners (C) one that keeps your bib numbers clear, visible and easy-to-read (reference tip #1 for more on that)
#3: Wear Shades
Now, with the early race start of 5:30 AM, it’ll be dark when the race first begins, so if you have a pocket or belt to stow your shades, you may want to stow them – but once the sun rises in Anaheim, there are a few stretches of the course where you’ll definitely want to protect your precious peepers – and, honestly, pictures with your shades make for less “squinty” snapshots.
#4: “Double Up” on Favorites
If you’re planning on stopping to take pictures with characters, you have three options – relying on Marathon Foto’s services, using your own camera, or both! Personally, I opt for both, and have my picture snapped by the photographers, as well as “backed up” on my smartphone, since sometimes there either is no photographer around, one picture doesn’t turn out, and most importantly – instant (free!) access to your photo to share ASAP.
If you are planning to carry your own camera or phone for pictures, be sure to have it queued up/made as simple as possible for the character greeter who will be taking your picture.
#5: Have Fun!
On top of everything, having fun and enjoying your Disneyland Half Marathon event will not only make your experience more enjoyable, but it WILL show in all of your photos, too!
For some runners, making the most of the race day photo adventure includes checking out a map of where photographers are stationed beforehand is helpful (this is available in a flyer format, which can be picked up at the MarathonFoto expo booth) but personally, trying to run, remember where photographers are and take in the experience is a bit of a juggling act! Plus, sometimes scheduling changes mean more or less photographers, so to that I say, “Hakuna Matata,” and just live it up – your smile will make any picture that much better!
While you’re making memories and having a blast, remember to always be courteous to your fellow runners. If you’re approaching a course photographer, be sure you’re not blocking or dangerously crossing the path of another runner – safety is always first! This also goes for finish line photos – grabbing hands, or linking arms with a running partner might make for a fabulous photo, but be aware of your surroundings so you’re not clothes-lining someone else, or creating some other sort of dangerous situation.
Any other questions? What tips would YOU add to this list? Share your favorite Disneyland Half race photo in the comments below!