Many people around the world view Christmas as one of the most celebratory times of the year as they gather with their family and friends. Of course, if you are getting together with people you love it’s also a great time to capture some of the moments on camera. The same opportunity may also arise during other annual holidays such as Thanksgiving and Halloween.


If you want to practice yourphotography skills and improve them, these are ideal times to do so. Simply take along your camera and volunteer to take photos for everybody, which you can then share with them by handing out discs of the shots. This will enable you to take dozens of photos of many different subjects and in a variety of situations and settings.

As long as you’re well prepared you should have a lot of fun and learn a thing or two along the way. Just make sure you have enough memory cards and batteries, a flash unit and a tripod. These should be all of the ingredients you need to get some great shots. You may also want to create a festive setting in the home or wherever it is you’ll be taking the photos.

At Christmas time you’ll be able to use trees, ornaments, decorations, hats, and colored lights etc. You can use whatever firs the event and dress up your subjects as well as any pets that are there. A kitten or puppy with a Santa Claus hat on it can make for a fantastic shot. You’ll also have the chance to take many group and individual portraits.

The days leading up to the celebrations can also be used to get some good photos. For instance, you can take them while Christmas shopping, of people singing carols, of children building snowmen or playing in the snow, people decorating their trees, people wrapping gifts, snowball fights, street lights and decorations, and also of those who are preparing the dinner etc. In fact, the situations are more or less endless. All you need to do is be creative, use your imagination and have some fun.

Of course, one of the best times to snap some shots is when everybody’s opening their gifts. The look of spontaneous delight and surprise on people’s faces can be priceless, especially when it comes to children. The pets then usually play around with the discarded bows and wrapping paper, making for even more excellent moments to capture. Just remember to set your digital camera to the continuous shooting or burst option.

You can always do a bit of experimenting before the big day. Sometimes capturing the colored lights can be a bit difficult, so trying things out can be a big help. You could also practice with the camera’s flash or an external unit. This will enable you to get the hang of reflecting and diffusing light off of bright or white surfaces. If you’d like to get some good close up photos of ornaments or things you could try using the macro mode.

As long as you have all of the photography equipment that you think you’ll need, there’s no reason you won’t be successful when taking holiday shots. Just watch what’s going on around you and let your instincts take over. However, don’t forget to make sure you’re in some of the photos too. Have somebody take over for you for a little while or use a remote control or the camera’s timer to guarantee you’re also seen in the photos having a good time.


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