Patrick Rife and Nicolas China

By Ian Zelaya



Nicolas China and Patrick Rife, co-founders of Pixilated Photo Booth

Your Pixilated tag line is “We bring the fun” (to more than 300 weddings last year), so let’s start with the eternal question: Band vs DJ?

Ideally, we’d say have both! You could have a really awesome jazz trio at cocktail hour and an incredible DJ for the dance party. Then switch it up to karaoke for the after-party.

Any local DJs or bands you love?

Chris Riddle of Beat 2 Beat DJs is doing some really cool stuff with new social media integration products—you can have a live Twitter feed that runs through his software. DJ Al Graham is great, too.

Do you have any out-of-the-box suggestions for wedding themes?

One time we sourced real people to be photo booth props. There was a tie-in to benefit the Maryland Zoo, so we hired a high-end body painter to come in and paint actors to look like zoo animals—lions, tigers and flamingos. There’s also a guy in Catonsville who has a bunch of wild animals. You can walk down the aisle with a peregrine falcon.

I just imagine that falcon flying off with someone’s toupee. What else is trending these days?

As far as photo booths go, a lot of people are getting into gifs and animation. Experiential, slow-motion type stuff. We also know a couple of people who are doing drone video for weddings, which is pretty cutting-edge.

Any tips for the budget-minded?

We talk more about doing research to find out what a good photo booth company offers. There are definitely things you can get for a $200 Groupon. We just developed a guide you can download to help people pick out their wedding photo booth, whether that’s us or someone else.

What was your favorite wedding?

Torrey and Chanel Smith’s wedding is the biggest one we’ve done. It was cool to attend a wedding with a bunch of pro athletes and agents.

What’s the funniest moment to ever happen in a Pixilated booth?

Obviously anytime anyone exposes themselves. Some of the lewd poses get a lot of cheers, but they end up getting deleted. We’ve had some conga lines, too. And one time Kevin Spacey ended up in our booth. That was pretty surreal.

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