How to Take Holiday Photos You’ll Treasure

The leaves have fallen, the air is crisp…the Holidays are officially upon us.  Let the family traditions begin!

Great food.  Gathering with family and friends.  Shopping (shopping, shopping).  More food.  Volunteering.  Magical moments with the kiddos.  Cousin Eddie.  And more food.

And…pictures.  LOTS of pictures!

Whether it’s taking family photos for the Christmas card, capturing all the magical moments of the season, or being named “official family photographer” by all the extended family during your big gathering, FEAR YE NOT!

We’re here to give you some tips that’ll make you look like a pro.

More importantly, we want to help you capture pics this season that you’ll treasure forever.

So first thing’s first, please join us Cyber Monday (11.26.2018) at 12:00 CST for a LIVE web class where we’ll be unpacking easy, practical tips to capture Holiday photos you’ll treasure forever.


Here’s what we’ll cover in the web class:

  1. How to take a better holiday portrait (window light tips and camera settings)
  2. Tips for capturing story-telling images
  3. Tips for capturing these 3 Christmas tree pics:
    1. Kids in front of the tree
    2. Kids decorating / looking at the tree
    3. Tree alone (including bokeh-galore pic…where all the lights are round and out of focus)

Okay, let’s touch on some of the high points of each of these.

How to take a better holiday portrait

When it comes to creating a great portrait of your kiddos (and family), you need to choose good light above all else.

Usually, this means you need to go somewhere besides right in front of the Christmas tree!  (More on the kids-in-front-of-the-tree-pic below)

In the web class, we’ll walk you through just a few steps to maximize window light and get truly stunning results with any camera.  But if I had to give just one tip for now, it’d be this:

Face your subject (kiddo, fam, etc) TOWARDS the window (or even an open door), and don’t even worry about the background!

Yes, that’s right.  When it comes to portraits, you should choose great light over great backgrounds almost every time.  We’ll show you how to give even the busiest backgrounds a beautiful blur (bokeh).

Plus, we’ll show you how to frame your subject in such a way to where the background is hardly even noticed.  That’s because we’ll frame our image to where ALL of the attention goes to the EYES OF YOUR KIDDO (or subjects)!

Like this:

Tips for capturing story telling images

The power of photography is in the stories it captures.

The moments.  The emotions.  The connections.

When you start thinking like a photographer, your pics will start to include far more details and candid moments than “look at the camera” pictures.

One simple tip to capture more details and moments (besides look for them):

Get your camera LOW!

As in low to the ground, low to the table, low.

Here’s a pic I took last year of Jules wrapping presents (with a nearby little elf helper).  I had the camera low to the ground, and it changes the entire feel of the image:

Tips for capturing these 3 Christmas tree pics:

Seems like there’s a few staples that folks often request when it comes to taking pics with the Christmas tree involved.

You’ve got the kids in front of the Christmas tree pic:

You’ve got the kids decorating / looking at the Christmas tree pic:

And you’ve got the Christmas tree bokeh pic (with or without something in the foreground…but I LOVE this shot by Alison):

Here’s the quick tips for each one:

  1. For the Christmas tree portrait: Try to shoot it during the day so that you can still use window light, and position the tree further into the background (don’t stand right in front of it)
  2. For the kids decorating the tree shot: Shoot this during the night, turn off every single light, and expose for the highlights (not the mid tones).
  3. For the bokeh tree shot: Use manual focus and throw it out of focus if you’re just shooting the lights.  If you have a foreground, make sure it’s a good ways away from the tree.

Join us Cyber Monday (11.26.2018) For More!

Okay, we’ll go over each of these tips in more detail (as well as many other tips) in our upcoming web class on Cyber Monday!

Click here to register for the “How to Take Holiday Photos You’ll Treasure” web class.

If you can’t attend LIVE, then please still register as we’ll provide a replay for those who registered!

Again, registration is FREE!  Looking forward to seeing you inside!


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4 thoughts on “How to Take Holiday Photos You’ll Treasure”

  1. Hi
    I’ve registered for the free web class, but I’ll be racing home from work in NYC traffic to participate. How will I access the archive if I miss part or all of it? HELP!

  2. I’m was caught up in the holidays and didn’t attend the live session. Now, I’ve been searching through my emails for a link to a replay. Is the window for this over?

    1. Hi BriAnne,

      It is. It talks about the open enrollment for our Photo Fix class which is now closed and we wanted to avoid confusion. Sorry that you missed it!

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