Hobbies: Remember this Halloween with photo props

Sandi Genovese
Tribune News Service

The best things about Halloween are candy, costumes and practical jokes (you know, the “trick” in trick-or-treat). Honestly, the only thing scary about Halloween is the potential weight gain from all the candy consumption. That’s if you don’t count the rubber snakes hidden in my bed covers or the plastic spiders lodged in the bottom of my milk glass. Turns out my family is unusually fond of Halloween tricks, so I have a real need to make a big deal out of Halloween.

Thing is, it’s just plain fun to dress up, eat candy and hide a toy reptile or rodent once in a while. As adults, my friends are less tolerant of the practical jokes, so this year I am focusing on Halloween photos.

Whether you have a party for the kids or adults, they are all likely to enjoy having their picture taken, especially if they can ham it up with a few photo props. None of the children I know would consider skipping the costume on Halloween — how else are they going to score all the candy? — but if you have adults coming over for Halloween, you really need to amp up the fun factor with a few props-on-a-stick that need only be held in the photo to melt the ice at a party.

Cut Halloween-themed accessories from card stock and decorate them to create props like a candy corn bow tie, an embellished mask, vampire lips and a spider tattoo. Cut two slits about a half-inch long and a quarter-inch apart on each prop. Weave a wooden stick or bamboo skewer between the slits to make the props easy to hold, then bring out the camera. A caption box can even be cut from black chalkboard paper so that each guest can write their own message with a chalk marker.

And don’t worry about renting a photo booth, simply create a black-and-white backdrop with a sheet, a roll of wrapping paper or a few yards of fabric. Add a few strips of twisted orange crepe paper and let the party begin.

So if your guests are 7 or 70, costume clad or not, they will love taking home a Halloween photo or two.

Contact Sandi Genovese and find free video demonstrations of more photo projects at sandigenovese.com.