Ideas and Advice for Holiday Pics!

November 9, 2021

Every year smart phones improve camera lenses and options for taking pictures and videos. Now, with a few tips from seasoned photography pros, you can snap sensational photos for holiday cards AND capture cherished moments during the holiday season.

There’s Still Time to Get it Right!

If you didn’t take the perfect family photo on your summer vacation, there’s still time to snap a picture-perfect shot of the loved ones you live with to send to the loved ones you don’t! Be Funky says location is key. Find the perfect spot as the backdrop for a photo that you’ll likely look back at for decades.

For quick tips on setting the scene, head over to Postable’s 30 Awesome Christmas Card Photo ideas. The advice there is to start by making sure the setting is ready for you (like the boathouse at Senac Pond!). And as most of the pros concur – take LOTS of pictures. Even Annie Leibovitz takes multiple shots to get the perfect portrait!

We know you’ll be thinking about what to wear, and maybe it goes without saying, but it’s best to avoid distracting prints or patterns. And don’t wear all-white or all-black – you’ll end up looking bigger than you want to! For a full family photo, the pros agree – just be coordinated — not too matchy-matchy.

Candid Photos for Couples and Families

© Wojoimage

There’s something very poignant about candid photos – I’m sure that’s why Vivien Maier became so famous after her cache of day-in-the-life photos was discovered in Chicago. Dandelion Chandelier (what an awesome name, right?) was trained as a cultural anthropologist, which may explain her connection to arresting visual images of people. She details how to get the best out of yourself and your partner/kids/pets. There’s so much personality in some of her photos, you’ll want to replicate the poses and looks.  

When it comes to kids and pets, it helps to get down to their level for a more natural photo with better scale. Techlicious encourages using candles and lights for interesting backgrounds. Embrace the Bokeh as they say – which means taking pictures in front of the Christmas tree with subjects in focus in the foreground and tree lights blurred in the background, to make a beautiful backdrop!

For more ideas about arranging people and poses, grab some inspiration from for couples only, or Agnieszka Wojtowicz’s tips (WojoImage Photography) in Good Housekeeping. And to make those holiday cards, check out VistaPrint and Costco for great deals this festive season!

And for tips on taking great holiday videos, check out this short YouTube video! 

Multiple Shots for Insurance!

Two basic bits of basic advice from Nikon’s Alex Podstawski include using “burst” mode to ensure you get the shot. With one click of the shutter button on your phone, you can take successive shots. Press it when you anticipate something worth capturing – like the moment a long-awaited guest arrives, or when dessert is presented, or a Thanksgiving Day game of Guesstures or Catch Phrase. Just remember to keep your finger down when you shoot!

Erin Brooks at the Sweet Set Up has lots of advice for the amateur photographer – things like creating a mood with ambient light and embracing the drama of darkness. If you’re setting up your Christmas tree before Thanksgiving, think about scenes lit only by the lights from a Christmas tree. She cautions to pay attention to everything in the frame and crop out anything that doesn’t help tell the story. Stray items/people/pets might become a distraction when you go to post/send/print the photos.

Erin offers examples shot with both an iPhone, and a Fujifilm X-T1 camera, and even gives some insider info about editing after the photo is snapped. Scroll through her holiday photos and follow along as she gives tips about creativity, composition and emotion. Finally, she urges every photographer to “GET IN THE FRAME”! It’s great to get photos of everyone else, but you’ll be conspicuously absent – and in a year or two even YOU will want to see YOU in the pics!

Picture Perfect: Southshore

There are lots of backdrops in and near the master-planned community of Southshore for quick snaps for holiday greeting cards. And while you’re at it, check out the models showcasing the brand new homes from Taylor Morrison, Century Communities, Richmond American Homes and Toll Brothers. Because Life at the Lake is not just exclusive and packed with amenities – you’ll find the perfect ranch or two-story design, priced between the $400s and the $700s.