Photographing Christmas needn't be that hard.
But it's very easy to get so caught up in whipping your phone out to capture all the special moments of the day, you actually end up not being fully present and involved - which isn't great either for yourself or your family.
Of course, I'm not suggesting you'd turn in That Person ... But it's still best to be intentional.
Find out here how to walk that line of capturing Christmas in photographs but still being fully there in the moment to enjoy it!
1) What to think about first
2) Decide what you DO need to capture
When you're photographing Christmas, decide who’s involved and at what times of day everything's happening.
a) Idenitfy the visual highlights
These could include:
b) Think about the people
Concentrate on showing relationships between people rather than mere “things”, as these are the moments you’ll find meaningful in years to come.
Assess/predict this by glancing through your old photos. What’s worthless and what’s valuable? Will you look back and think, yep, it was definitely worth photographing Christmas ... I'm so glad I did?
c) Details and scene-setting
Photograph the “establishing shots” in advance.
Take a few minutes for wide shots of the whole room with the Christmas table laden before everyone sits down and don’t forget to take a quick picture of all the Santa stockings before the kids demolish them!
3) Evaluate on the spot
As the day goes on, ask yourself whether a moment is really worth getting your phone and photographing it. Ask yourself:
4) Limit the number of shots
You could put a limit on the number of shots you’ll take then put your phone AWAY.
5) Pick a time period
You could decide the time period you’ll photograph in. Morning? Afternoon? Then put your phone AWAY.
6) Get in the shot yourself
Don’t forget to get in the frame yourself! Women, particularly mums, are the world’s worst at this. No matter what you’re doing, hand your phone to someone else to get a few shots of you doing it.
After all, you’re part of the story too, aren’t you? Don’t leave yourself out.
7) Bonus tip
Don’t “post and party”! Just don’t! If it’s reactions on social media you’re after, your photo will be just as popular if it’s posted later on when you’re crashed out on the couch and the kids are in bed.
Or even on Boxing Day ...
Get in the photos yourself
Of all the tips here, I'd say the most important is to GET IN THE PHOTOGRAPHS YOURSELF when you're photographing Christmas.
Not to be morbid, but after you're gone, imagine your kids or other family members looking back on these photos in years to come and you're just not in them ...
And don't forget to have an utterly fabulous day! You deserve it.