It’s that time of the year again…ho ho ho…Whether we like it or not, Christmas is not too far away, and we all know what that means; get your ugly sweaters on, put your best face forward, it’s picture time!
Holiday cards, family photos and those very ‘‘natural and spontaneous’’ Instagram photos are also part of the package. So before you eat too much food with your pants undone, snuggle up with hot chocolate on the couch or fall asleep watching the same movie for the tenth year in a row, here are some great ideas for you on how to spice up your Christmas photos outdoors this year.
The perfect scenery
If you live in a place where there is snow this time of year, you should definitely take advantage of it and take some great shots outdoors. Picture an all-white Christmas like in the story tales with you as the main character under pines covered with fluffy snow. Did you walk by a cute little street with beautiful lights hanging? Put that on your list, you are going to come back with the whole family soon!
Were you thinking of taking the picture when it is pitch dark outside to see the Christmas lights? Wrong and wrong again! It will come out blurry or washed out, as the camera cannot focus on both at once. Around twilight or dusk is the exact time to put your boots on to take these jolly photos, and do it quickly because you only have a few minutes to catch that perfect light. Forget about the flash, the colors of the sky will create a beautiful and natural contrast, and maybe even compliment your skin tone. Good natural light will always be better than a bright flash, especially when you catch pink purple skies for the backdrop.
It’s all about the distance
Too close and we can’t have all the elements present in the photo to get a good feeling about the atmosphere, yet too far and you need goggles to distinguish your grandmother from your little sister. The ideal frame englobes all the elements you want; your family, the lights, maybe your house in the background, or the trees, or a small narrow street with Christmas decorations.
Play with your camera
Have fun with your camera; there are different ways of enhancing your holiday’s photos! Increase the ISO at around 400, but be careful as increasing it too much might damage the quality of your photo. Looking for more light? Try out the incandescent white balance. Use a tripod to maintain the balance and avoid those almost-perfect-but-a-little-burry photos. Oh and check for half-closed or red eyes in photos!
Make it fun
One way to take a good outdoor photo this Christmas is by including some expressive characters in the frame. Be it your grumpy grandfather, your long distant cousin who just happened to come over for the holidays, or your way-too-pumped-for-the-holidays friend, including people who are important to you will make the photo more personalized and unique. You can capture great lighting, have the perfect Christmassy look, but it is so much more special to you and your loved ones if you are in it. Be creative too, might as well, since you are outdoors. Don’t be afraid to be a little corny, it’s allowed and even encouraged this time of year. Have your friends high five each other in a white luminous background, or your parents kiss under the mistletoe in a beautifully decorate street.
Capture all the preparation stages
Sometimes the best photos outdoors this Christmas might be the most spontaneous ones. Keep that in mind while you are preparing the frame, something nice, funny or sweet might randomly happen and if your camera is near you, you could just capture it and immortalize it. It is also a great way to show your loved ones in their real light; some might be goofy, way to focused on getting it right, laughing, bonding with one another, its natural and the photo will become more than just ‘‘the perfect photo’’, it will also authentic and represent those you love. Some people might even be more photogenic when they are not focused on maintain a fake smile for your lens, or get the one-eye-half-closed look which is not so popular to say the least. Therefore, as you are getting prepared to take the photo, take a few sneak peeks before the shoot, you might get some golden ones.
To wrap things up
We all have our special techniques to take that one great Christmas outdoor photo and what might be esthetically pleasing for one might not be for another person, however, there are some easy key points to consider to help you stay on the right track. As the holiday season is now upon us, make your Instagram followers happy and please your grandma, and take some good outdoors Christmas photos!
Now, remember, keep your eyes open for a beautiful place that catches your attention and make it right on time before the sun sets. Also, don’t forget to place your camera at the perfect distance and don’t hesitate to play with your phone or camera to give it a certain look. We all need a little enhancing, don’t we? It is also the time to capture beautiful moments you’re your family and friends, and sometimes the best photos are the ones caught on the spur of the moment, so keep it natural! All in all, your outdoor Christmas photos will be a great way to enjoy time with your loved ones and have fun, or at least make it look like you are for your social media!