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How To Successfully Take Photos This Christmas

Posted on Tuesday 9th March 2021   |   News

How to successfully take photos this Christmas

Christmas is coming, and we all know that this year it is going to be a little bit different for us all. However, we will still all be making memories, and so we need to make sure that we capture those memories for years to come. We don’t just sell picture frames – from a0 to a4 frames – here at, we also know about picture taking as well.

So, here are our top tips and ideas to help you capture the big day in a way that you will want to look at in a4 picture frames uk for years to come. 

#1 Make a list and check it twice

Making sure you are ready to capture all of the special moments is key to a successful Christmas shoot. You not only need to make sure you are ready, but that you have an idea of where the location of your best shots will be.

  • Make sure your camera batteries are charged, and that you have spare to hand – just in case
  • Make sure you have a memory card in your camera, and empty one, and that you have spare ones to hand as well
  • Consider the lighting in the main room you will be photographing in - is there enough light or will you need a flash? Make sure the backgrounds are as clear and not distracting – well as possible as you can in the chaos that is Christmas. 

#2 Get the (white) balance right

Christmas tends to take place inside in the UK, and so you will be battling against unnatural lighting when snapping your pictures. Take a look at the lighting beforehand and make sure you adjust your white balance settings accordingly. However, if you are lucky enough to have a camera that shoots in RAW, then just snap away because you can sort out the white balance later.

#3 Set up a DIY photo booth

It will probably be a smaller Christmas then you are used to this year, and so while it may be a bit pointless hiring a photo booth you could set up a portrait booth of your own, to keep your kids (and the rest of your family) entertained.

Set up a red velvet curtain as a background, and decorate it with some Christmas decorations to jazz it up a bit. Then dot around some Santa hats and other props for people to help themselves to.

Grab everyone individually before you sit down to eat and then leave the camera set up on a short self-timer so that people can go back and take photos of themselves as the day wears on. 

#4 Capture all of the preparation

The actual Christmas meal is the highlight of the day, but there are lots of other photographic opportunities throughout the day as well – particularly in the preparation stage.


  • Putting up the decorations
  • Wrapping the gifts
  • Setting the table
  • Preparing the food
  • The kids in all of their finery

The shots before the celebrations start properly are often the most popular as they show everything at its best before chaos descends.

#5 Create a time-lapse series

Set up your computer in the corner of the room, with a web cam looking down on the table, and then set the camera to go off every 5 minutes during the day. You may just end up with one of the most wonderful series of shots you have ever seen.

#6 Capture the outdoor lights

Many people shy away from photographing Christmas lights as they can be tricky to do. However, there are a few tips to keep in mind which should make capturing them easier to do:

It’s all about the timing. If it’s too dark it can be hard to get the lights properly exposed, but if it is too light then they won’t show up at all. You need to time it right so the balance between the Christmas lights and the ambient light is at its best. 

  • Compose the photo so that you have plenty of sky showing – try shooting it from a low position
  • Once the picture is framed, set the white balance to ‘tungsten’ as if you were shooting indoors without a light
  • A light foreground can give a nice bit of interest. 

#7 Find a point of interest per shot

All great photos have a focal point that captures and holds the attention of the person who is viewing the image. The problem with Christmas is that there can be so many different things competing to be the focal point of the shot, such as decorations and food. You’ll need to work hard to declutter your images to make sure the focal point is clear.

#8 Freshen up your group photos

One of the most common shots when family get together is the group photo – which is usually taken at the end of the day when not everyone is looking their best. So, for a fresher shot, take it in the morning once everyone is up. Also, have a think about how you might pose everyone and where the best shot will be.

#9 Shoot opening gifts in continuous mode

There are certain moments at Christmas that are filled with lots of photographic opportunities, and opening gifts is definitely one of them. It is filled with an array of emotions, excitement and facial expressions, especially if there are children involved.

Switch your camera to continuous mode, sometimes called burst mode, and take lots and lots of shots at this point of the festivities. You should end up with some excellent shots that capture everything from the anticipation of getting the gift, through to the excitement (or sometimes disappointment) of opening the gift. Don’t forget to capture the reaction of the person who gave the gift as well.

#10 Fill the frame 

One of the most common mistakes in photography is shots of people on the other side of the room with lots of space around them. Make sure to fill your frame either by using the zoom setting on your camera, or by moving yourself closer. 

#11 Diffuse your flash

Another common shot with family photographs is that you end up with shots where the flash is so bright that everyone looks like they have been caught in the spotlight with harsh shadows. One way around this is to use a diffuser or reflector around your flash. If you have an external flash on your camera then try bouncing it off the ceiling or the walls. Another way to reduce your flash impact is to switch your camera into ‘night mode’ which will still fire the flash but at a lower shutter speed. 

We wish all of customers a very happy Christmas, and all the best for the New Year. Remember, we have all the frames you need – whether it be an a3 frame or a poster frame – to showcase your Christmas memories for years to come. 

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