Having photos of your baby are always important to have but especially during the holidays. Christmas is an extra special time when family comes together to celebrate. Why not capture all the festive feelings and family all at once. I know there are some parents that have no idea how to capture that special moment or know how to create a special moment to capture. Here I give you a few tips on when to photograph, how to make new photo traditions and ideas on how to create that moment. It really doesn’t matter if you have a cell phone, compact or DSLR camera. These days cell phones can capture some beautiful photos, but I’m still a lover of a digital DSLR. At the end I’ll go over the camera I use and extras.
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Create Your Christmas Settings With Props
Sometimes it can be more fun to just create the setting yourself. It doesn’t have to be expensive and you don’t have to be a professional photographer to set up your Christmas scenes. Here are two that I have done the first and second year of my baby’s life.
This first one was a basket wrapped in Christmas paper. So super easy to do. Just take a basket or box where your baby fits, (make sure he or she can hold their head up) wrap it up in some pretty Christmas paper and your done. Place in front of Christmas tree and snap away.
This one was alot of fun setting up. Only needed a couple of items which you can easily get at your local craft store.
A cute wooden Santa sign you see in the background.
Two or three bags of pillow stuffing to make the faux snow.
Some whiten, festive pin cones
One or two very large Christmas tree ornaments (which you can use later)
Oh and cute outfit required!!
That it’s it! Just be a tiny bit creative and put together or just copy my below.
In this photo our baby girl wasn’t walking yet or laying her down with a huge Christmas ornament did the trick. Few tips:
Lay them down on a fluffy white rug for colors to stand out
Put something red or Christmas related on them
One or two ornaments
If the surface of the ornament is reflective make sure the reflection is good. Here it’s her mommy with the Christmas tree in the background.
Need GREAT LIGHTING!
Make New Family Photo Traditions
It’s never to late to start photography traditions in your family. I have to admit that I think that the best ones are for Christmas and Thanksgiving but they can really be done for any occasion or circumstance. We started this series back in 2013, our first Christmas together. As you can see things changed drastically in the last three years (first two not pictured), from the passing of pets, birth of our baby girl and the addition of another pet. I know we will all value these as time progresses and it’s so interesting to see the differences especially in the years to come. Here are a few tips and ideas:
Choose a date. Christmas Eve/Day, New’s Eve
Choose where to photograph—in front of the Christmas tree, fire place, a special place.
Use a tripod to set up your camera or phone camera
Use a photo editing program to add the date and improve the photos. I use Adobe Photoshop to add the date and change the exposure and white balance.
You can also wear matching clothes such as pajamas or the same colors.
Don’t forget to add your pets, they are part of the family.
On Location Christmas Photography
Ok, so I have to admit that all of these are pretty fun to do but going outside adds a different element to it. It can be fun but controlling the outside elements could be difficult especially if there are strangers around and it’s the wrong time of the day. Some tips to prepare for your outside location photo shoot:
Eat before you go. You don’t want to be cranky or have an cranky baby.
Scout out the area or location before you go.
Ask permission if needed.
Go EARLY! Seriously go before anyone gets there. You don’t want a whole bunch of people in your photos.
Go in the morning or in the afternoon. Avoid the middle of the day when the sun is the brightest. Clouds are ok, actually can be better.
Don’t forget your tripod! See below for camera and tripod favs!
Wear something Christmas related or red.
On the below photos we went early before noon and no one was around. I put my Canon DSLR camera on a tripod and put it on timer. You can also use a camera remote control to shoot with. These are great and easy to use but you need to make sure that your DSLR has that particular option available.
Christmas Pajamas Photography Ideas
Pajama photos are always fun and laid back. There is no need to go anywhere or have special props for this type…just some PJs. At the end of post I added some Christmas pajamas from Amazon. They are easy to find. Here are some places to take your pajama photos:
In front of the Christmas tree
With the tree lights on, better in the early evening
Opening gifts on Christmas morning or have an early one gifter
Upon waking up, maybe in the crib or toddler bed
While decorating the Christmas tree
When playing with ornaments
Portrait style or while they are looking away
Not all our us are lucky enough to experience a winter event but when it happens it’s like a winter wonderland that has to be captured, especially if you have children. This one is easy because you already have a beautiful setting. Although snow makes everything pretty you should still keep on eye out for distractions in your photos. Somethings you don’t won’t in the background or foreground are cars, strangers, trash cans and other unflattering items. So frame your photo from the beginning. The first three sets of photos were taken with my Canon DSLR with a 50mm lens. The 50mm lens is perfect for portraits and it makes the background blurry. These can easily be bought for under $80.
If you have a baby under one years old and isn’t walking yet you can still create some beautiful photos. Here I took a four inch deep clear storage container, put a pillow inside and a small flurry rug on top and sat my baby girl on top. She had a warm knit jumpsuit, a onsie underneath, and threw on one of my matching scarves.
Below are a set of toddler photos. All you need are a snow onesie if you have one or a cute warm outfit. Here are some ideas:
side facial views
action photos, running
back view especially if there is a cute outfit involved
playing with the snow
Christmas PJs and Other Props
To add the touch of Christmas to your photo you definitely need some Christmas Pjs, hats and outfits. Here are a few ideas from Amazon that you may like for you baby.
Photography Gear for Moms
I have always used Canon cameras…..absolutely LOVE them. My DSLRs are all EOS, entry level cameras that take great photos. Below is a great package with lens, SD cards, mini tripod etc.
Also, included a tripod which I’m getting myself for Christmas this year. It has great reviews on Amazon and it kinda looks cute too!
One of my favorite lens is the 50mm lens shown below. It has a low f/stop which gives you that blurry background look that are perfect for portraits.
I’m sure there are dozens if not more of ideas out there for Christmas Family photography ideas. Tell me what you think about these ideas and if you tried them. Would love to add your photos to this post as examples! Comment below!