You are taking your camera to your family’s house at Christmas or you are want to catch all the fun at a holiday office party. Here are a few ideas to get some unusual, memorable moments.
Getting Ready for the Christmas Event
Show up early and photograph all the preparations that go into setting up for the gathering. Photograph the children cutting out cookies, photograph your grandmother hanging an old ornament on the tree, photograph boxes of Christmas decorations with tinsel coming out the top, photograph the turkey when someone pulls it out of the oven to baste it, photograph your coworker setting up the bottles for the holiday bar. Christmas is colorful and there are no end of “getting ready” photos to be had. And don’t forget to get extreme close-ups of ornaments, gingerbread houses, the corner of a china plate, a cookie, etc.
Set Up Your Own Photo Booth
This is so simple to do. Before everyone starts to arrive, set up a spot in an out-of-the-way corner where you can shoot some portraits. All you really need for a DIY photo booth is wrapping paper and tape. Choose a wrapping paper that doesn’t have a metallic shine. Tape the paper to the wall, put a chair or loveseat in front of the paper and you are ready to go. A curtain as a background works well too. If you have a light, set that up. You can always use lamps. Another option is to put a cheap point and shoot camera (that has a self-timer) on a tripod. That way people can sit down in your little studio and take selfies. While you are off taking other photos, the guests are taking care of some portrait shots for you.
Opening Christmas Presents
Don’t just take one shot of someone holding their present when it’s out of the box. Start clicking continuously when they begin tearing into the paper, and keep clicking until they pull the present out of the box. Keep the focus on their face.
That Big Group Shot
For whatever reason, people tend to do the big group shot at the end of the event. People are tired, make-up fades, clothes are not as crisp. As soon as the people you want for the group shoot arrive, get that out of the way while people are looking fresh.
After the Party
You got your before shots, so don’t forget your after shots, like the messy table, half-eaten cookie, relatives doing dishes, people having too much to drink, piles of wrapping paper, someone asleep in a chair.
Outside the House/Office
Don’t forget to take a photo of the decorations outside the house. For a tutorial about shooting Christmas lights check out How To Photograph Holiday Lights