The holidays will kick into high gear with Thanksgiving serving as the beginning of what is sure to be a busy and festive season. When family gathers together to celebrate, we want to make sure we’ve taken plenty of fantastic photos to remember the occasion. Here are some of our favorite tips for making sure the snaps you shoot are cause for celebration:
Get Your Gear Ready A few days before family arrives, spend a few minutes getting your gear in order. If you have images on your memory card, transfer them to your primary computer, verify they transferred without incident and reformat the camera card. Charge your camera’s battery and, if you have an external flash, make sure it’s charged with new batteries and is in working order. Also, double-check that your lens cleaning cloth is in your bag. One rogue fingerprint can kill an entire series of shots. Check out most popular cleaning kit here: www.porters.com/opticclean-deluxe-camera-care-kit.html
Also, remember to revisit how to use the timer function on your camera. After all, you don’t want to just take the photos–you’ll want to be in them as well!
Understand Your Lighting Situation: If the Thanksgiving feast is being held at your home or at a nearby relative’s abode, scout the most likely areas to shoot family photos. What lighting options are available? Are there large windows nearby to lend available light? Does the room have a low ceiling and few light sources?
Surveying the possible posing locations and studying lighting can greatly improve your success rate when it comes to shooting quality holiday photos. You’ll have a sense of where the best lighting is located and can bring additional lighting if needed. You’re also much more likely to get cooperation from pint-sized subjects if you have all the tough stuff figured out in advance. All you’ll need to do is pose and shoot!
Showcase Your Storytelling Skills: Do you have an idea of what you’d like to capture this holiday season? For example, maybe the all-day cooking marathon in the kitchen always brings a smile to your face. Thanksgiving photos aren’t solely for the dinner table presentation, although that particular shot is certain to be a favorite. Document the interactions between loved ones–the offhanded laughs, the shared smiles and the candid conversations exchanged throughout the day. The outdoor football game, the long walk after an amazing meal and the kids playing in the yard are all great opportunities to create Thanksgiving memories.
Make Posing Painless: Getting everyone to cooperate is particularly important when large groups and small children are involved so your careful planning is about to pay off! When your family members know that you’ve put a bit of thought into the process, they’re more likely to realize it should be a quick and painless event!
For posed group portraits, you’re more likely to get cooperation from family earlier in the day. For elderly family members, make sure posing includes a comfortable chair for them to sit and place others around them according to height. Younger kids can sit cross-legged on the floor in front. Getting engaged smiles is an easier task if you stay connected to them. Try a remote shutter release –it’s one of the most helpful accessories you can keep in your camera bag for shooting family portraits.
Don’t Forget to Share! With so many choices online, sharing your family photos has never been easier. Just make sure to get copies to all the family members involved. For example, some grandparents have a Facebook account while others prefer to have hardcopies, so take care to send a set of printed photos if they aren’t comfortable viewing images online. Order your Holiday prints and greeting cards HERE!