It’s that time of year for family get-togethers, whether it’s just yourself and your significant other or 30 members of the extended family.Then, when you want to take that family photo you get the sighs and rolling of the eyes BUT you want that record shot to remember the occasion.
Hiring a professional photographer just isn’t in the budget for everyone so I’ve put together a couple of tips (just three) to help you put it all together with minimal fuss and bother.
Tip Number One ~ Look for the Light
Whether you’re using a proper camera or just your phone, having your subjects well lit is key to a decent image. If you’re outside, early morning or late afternoon is best. If during the day is your only option opt for somewhere indoors near a big window or door. Soft, natural light works best and gives the best results no matter what type of camera you have.
Tip Number Two ~ Keep it snappy
Especially if there are kids and pets involved! Plan ahead and work out your location before rallying the troops. If dealing with a big family group maybe get Gran seated first before everyone else joins in. If possible use a tripod and/or timer. That way you can be in the pic too. If you’re using a phone or you don’t have a tripod, get inventive with books and cushions to prop up the camera while you set up the timer and slip into your arranged spot in the crowd. As I mentioned before preparation is key, before the troops get restless.
Tip Number Three ~ Keep it Fun & Relaxed
This is a no-brainer. Nobody is going to smile nicely at the camera if they’ve been badgered and cajoled into posing for you. If you’re dealing with children or pets bribery is definitely an option. Make sure everyone is fed and watered beforehand – except for dogs – they respond better to treats if they’re a little peckish. With kids, make it a game. Get them to look for the caterpillar crawling around inside the lens, or get someone to blow bubbles. Works a treat!
TIP ~ when working with kids and pets get down to their level. It makes for much more engaging photos. It also allows you to crack funny jokes or make strange noises (it depends of course on which of the two you’re trying to photograph).
Just remember to prepare as much as you can beforehand and then to keep it light and fun, and before you know it you’ll have the perfect shot – or shots ! Happy shooting!
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