It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!
While your camera batteries are charging; here’s a few tips and ideas to help you to capture all those family memories in the next couple of weeks.
- Charge your batteries, format your memory cards, clean your lenses, pick up extra flash batteries, and get all your gear packed safely in your camera bag and ready to go.
- Be sure, when you are heading out the door, that you don’t forget to take the camera. Sunday school programs, high school plays, office parties, caroling, and trips to Grandma’s are all great photo ops!
- Don’t forget to capture all the memories of Christmas, from cookie baking and decorating to that turkey dinner and the big gift exchange, it’s all part of the traditions that you will want to hold dear.
- When photographing your Christmas tree don’t forget to get in close to some of those special ornaments as well as a nice wide shot of the whole tree. Try setting your camera’s white balance to tungsten if those Christmas lights images just don’t seem to have the right colors.
- When taking a photo of one person or one object try positioning them slightly off center for a more interesting image. And don’t forget to take a look at the background before pressing that shutter button!
- When the kids are opening their gifts get down on their level and shoot in continuous mode to capture that joy and excitement as they anticipate the latest video game system. Or the not so excited faces as they open that new pair of gym socks!
- Wide shots that show the entire scene are great; but be sure to get in close too. Fill the frame with your subject and cut out that distracting busy background.
- Consider shooting in aperture priority mode on Christmas day. Use a wide aperture like f/2.8 or f/4 to give the background a nice soft blur or a narrow aperture like f/8 or f/11 to keep everyone in focus.
- When taking those photos of the Christmas lights try to find that balance between sunny afternoon and black of night. Too bright out and the lights won’t show up. Too dark and you won’t see anything else in the scene.
- To better your chances of getting the whole gang with their eyes all open at the same time take at least three shots for each of your group photos. More if you’ve got fidgety kids!
- When photographing a snowy scene your camera can be esaily fooled into underexposing the image. This gives the beautiful white snow a less than appealing blue or gray cast and a very unnatural look. To fix this problem use your camera’s exposure compensation feature and force an additional 1 or 2 stops of light. Look for a little +1 or +2 symbol.
- One last tip… be ready… shoot quickly… and shoot often!