It’s THAT time of year again, moms… time to plan for the Christmas card photo! If you’re anything like us, you agonize over things like what the kids will wear, whether the photo should just include the children or the whole family, when and where the photo should be taken… the list is seemingly endless!
This year we decided to lean on some professional experience to help ease the pressure. We hope these ideas from Angela Scott, of Angela Scott Photography in Sacramento, CA help make the process a whole lot easier – and more fun – for you!
LCC: Angela, what is the best time of day to take a photo outdoors?
Angela: Ideally, the best time for outdoor photos would be early morning, within a few hours of the sun rising. A couple of hours before the sun sets in the late afternoon can also work well. Of course, that assumes a sunny day… during the winter months here in Northern California, we tend to have more overcast days, which can provide an excellent filter from the sun and allow for beautiful pictures. So don’t be afraid of overcast weather on your photo shoot day!
LCC: What about indoor pictures? Do we need a place with a lot of natural light or would it be okay to use regular room lighting?
Angela: For the best photos, try to plan your shoot for a time when the most natural light is available. On the other hand, be careful to avoid direct sunlight which can cast hard shadows across your faces. If you have access to professional or semi-pro lighting equipment, they would be effective as a substitute for natural light. Using your personal lamps and/or fluorescent lighting can give a very yellow-orange tone to skin, so I try and avoid using them.
LCC: What wardrobe colors photograph best? Should we avoid wearing patterns or stripes? And, what are your thoughts on everyone in the photo wearing matching clothes?
Angela: (laughs) This one really depends on your family’s personal style. Some clients like to have everyone match, which creates a very classic photo. My suggestion is that parents wear the neutral colors and kids wear the brighter colors… just make sure they blend well and don’t clash! That approach usually makes for a more fun and relaxed family photo. Small patterns are okay (ie, light plaid or pinstripe) and I suggest that only one family member wear a pattern to avoid a chaotic looking photo.
LCC: As a photographer – and a mom! – do you have any tips for getting the kids to cooperate during the photo shoot?
Angela: Yes, if you have younger children make sure they are well rested and fed. And, my number one suggestion during a shoot is for parents to be patient. As any parent knows, it’s difficult to have a child sit still, and a photo shoot is no different. Allow your photographer to work with the kids… funny enough, they tend to listen better to the photographer when being asked to sit and smile. Once the parents step in to get the kids to cooperate it often turns into a battle, and the frustration shows in the photos, which is the last thing we want. Try and have fun with it, moms! The more fun, the better the photo!
Feeling better already? We hope so! Many thanks to Angela for her words of wisdom on the topic. If you live in the Sacramento area and would like to connect with Angela to ask questions or to schedule a photo shoot, please feel free to contact her at:
Angela Scott Photography
Angela has a special promotion running that’s perfect for a Christmas photo shoot… check it out here: http://www.angelascottphotography.com/specials/