5 Top Christmas Photography Tips

A girl is bringing home a christmas tree on top of a roof outside in the snow for a holiday decoration or family tradition
Angela Waye / Alamy Stock Photo

Christmas is the perfect time to capture memories and precious family moments through your photography. I’m sure most people will agree that the key to a successful Christmas is being well prepared and the same could be said for most photo shoots, so with the big day fast approaching I’ve gathered together some of my top tips to help you take the perfect festive images on the day.

Tip 1: Keep it authentic

Authenticity has been a big trend in lifestyle and stock photography over past years and that is set to continue. It can be difficult to organise everyone on the day to try to get the ‘perfect shot’ but genuine, natural, unpolished images are often the best at telling a story so this year try not to worry too much that one shot, spend less time organising and more time shooting. Don’t be afraid to include out of focus elements in the foreground, capture images of people from behind or snap away when no one is looking, all the of these things will give images a more authentic feel.

Girl thanking father for gift at family Christmas party
Cultura Creative (RF) / Alamy Stock Photo

Tip 2: Always be prepared

This tip follows on nicely from number 1. To capture authentic ‘of the moment’ imagery you’ll need to be on the ball. Keeping your camera closeby is a very important factor to capturing great Christmas day imagery, these natural moments will only happen, well, naturally and if you’re not prepared with your camera to hand when the ‘moment’ happens you may miss it.

Christmas morning in a family home. A boy in a Santa hat looking out of a bedroom window and his sister laughing beside him.
Mint Images Limited / Alamy Stock Photo

Tip 3: Use lights to your advantage

Christmas is a magical time and using light can give your Christmas photography a mystical element. Fairy lights, candles and lanterns are all light sources you could use to add another level to your images. Check out this great article about photographing fairy lights at Christmas to help you with this one.

Cute boy, holding lantern outdoor, wintertime
Tatyana Tomsickova / Alamy Stock Photo

Tip 4: Involve your pets

Instead of ushering pets out of images when they’re in the way, involve them.  An important element to consider when photographing pets is to choose a location where the animal is comfortable such as their own home. Christmas time is a great opportunity to snap some shots of them in comfortable surroundings, whether it be chilling by the fire watching the Queen’s speech or playing amongst the no mans land of wrapping paper debris left after the unwrapping of gifts has finished.

Have a read of these pet photography tips for further advice on photographing (often) four legged models.

Rear view of girl carrying boston terrier in front of christmas tree
Cultura RM / Alamy Stock Photo

5: Use alternative perspectives

Images with alternative perspectives are another current trend within stock photography. Point of view (POV) shots, images from underneath and close ups, amongst others are great ways to create an eye catching photograph which will set yours apart from others. Some ideas for festive shots with different perspectives could include: a POV shot eating Christmas dinner, an overhead shot of present unwrapping, or hanging a tree decoration from underneath.

Person putting star on christmas tree
Cultura Creative (RF) / Alamy Stock Photo

Hopefully these tips will help you get some great Christmas day shots but if you’re still not sure of what to photograph, have a browse of this lightbox for some inspiration.

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