9 TIPS FOR BETTER HOLIDAY LIGHT PHOTOGRAPHY
Its that time of year again, its the holidays, which means big feasts, a flood of Christmas and holiday cards, time with family, decorations, gifts, and lots of pictures. But how can you take better pictures that won't look exactly like the ones from last year? This year we’re here to give you the gift of knowledge and show you how to make your pictures really stand out from the others. Here are our Christmas light photography tips for both indoor and outdoor spaces.
Use focus settings to capture amazing bokeh lights. Bokeh is a purposeful blur in a photograph, and is used to describe the effect created by out of focused lights. Bokeh can be added in later through photo editing but here’s what you need to know to get a bokeh look for your photos. Focus on something in the foreground to create that desirable out-of-focus look.
2. FOCAL POINT
Focus on one point of interest. Having one major focal point in your photo will make for an engaging composition. Its also ideal to feature one item in the foreground to focus on to create bokeh in the background.
3. INTERESTING ANGLE
Change your perspective by shooting from a low angle. This will create an interesting fresh composition that will give your image a unique quality. Try shooting from a very low angle. This might require some crouching down on your part but it will be worth it.
4. FULL COMPOSITION
Fill your frame. Fill it with everything you’re trying to capture, including some negative space or reflective surfaces. Snow, water, or just wet concrete will take your photos up a notch by softly reflecting your lights.
5. BRIGHT ENVIRONMENT
Brighten up the scene, first. When shooting inside bring extra lamps or any other light source into the room, to brighten your shadows and decrease the contrast that might confuse your camera.
6. ACT FAST
When shooting outside, act fast. Between sunset and nightfall, each minute will bring slightly different lighting conditions. This means that you have plenty of opportunity to capture a variety of scenes, but not a lot of actual time.
7. SHOOT BEFORE ITS TOO DARK
Photograph outside around twilight or dusk. For a few minutes, the natural light will perfectly complement the artificial lights. You’ll be able to capture the beautiful colors of your surroundings, and get much more depth in your pictures. If you were to photograph lights outdoor at night , the blackness of the sky would flatten your photo. Dusk is a good time and so is twilight. Shoot outdoor lights before it gets too dark for the best results.
8. STEADY SHOTS
Use a tripod. Without it, you’ll probably end up sacrificing a lot of image quality due to shakiness and your image might end up looking blurry. It’s the only way to guarantee a crisp shot of lights. If you don’t have a tripod try to remain as steady as possible. Brace your arm and tuck in your elbows close to your body to reduce shake.
9. AVOID FLASH
At all costs, avoid using the flash. If you’re trying to capture the color of the lights, even if they aren’t multicolored, your flash could interfere with the lights’ color profile. And that’s if your flash even shows up. Unless you have an incredibly powerful flash or are very close to your subject, the flash isn’t likely to contribute much to the exposure. Keep the flash off.