Here are a few tips to capture great Christmas day photos.
The Family Portrait: Now Christmas morning is an exciting time, but also can be very hectic and stressful. Kids are ready to dive into their presents, hair is out of place and who has time to put on makeup?
So here is my first tip, take the shot the night before! Its very easy to stage and the kids will be very excited about what’s to come!
Now before calling the family in, set your camera on a tripod of stable shelf and take some test shots. Set your cameras timer, if possible set the camera to take multiple shots and frame the shot. Once you’re happy with the results, then call the family in. Having everything set up before hand will make the shoot run smoothly!
Christmas Morning: If you’re anything like me, you are going to be wiped out! Last thing you want to is worry about camera settings, so let the camera do it for you. My suggestion is to set your camera to “P” mode (program). Your camera still does most of the thinking, but you have some control over certain things, like ISO. What I would do is set your ISO to a high number (i.e. 1000). I personally like my shutter speed to reach 1/125th of a second. Last thing, set your camera to continuous shooting.
Using the built in flash: The built in flash is very harsh, but you can use it if you know how. If you need to add some light to the scene make sure you change the output of the built in flash. Go to the menu and find flash control, once in there, find built-in flash settings. Once you click on that you will see something called Exposure Compensation. Using this setting you can manually control the output of your flash. Dial the exposure way down to 1/8th or 1/16th and take a test shot. I guarantee this will make your photos look a lot better compared to the full output of the flash.
Using a hot shoe flash: Using an external flash can add drama and direction to your light and make your Christmas morning photos look awesome! Something that every professional photographer does is bounce the light off of the ceiling! This will create very soft directional light, and you will not blow out your subjects!
I hope you enjoy these quick and easy tips. Merry Christmas!!!