It's December and we all know how quickly those last few weeks before the festive season fly by, so it’s time to get prepared, which includes your Christmas photography!
Here are a couple of tips on how to perfectly capture the memories of your family’s festive season whether you are staying on island or visiting your family abroad.
01 I Preserve The Preparation Stages
Families come together at holidays, but not just for the main event, also for the lead up to the big day. These are all exciting and fun moments, full of photographic opportunity, especially when you have young kids! Some examples include:
- Decorating the Christmas tree - although this sometimes sounds more romantic in theory than it is in practice if you have small kids - it is still exciting to capture their faces as they open the ornament boxes or try to help dad put the star on top of the tree, culminating in the moment when it is fully decorated and the lights are plugged in for the first time.
- Christmas Crafts – Part to get into the Christmassy spirit, part to entertain the kids whilst on school holidays, get our craft on! This can include making Christmas cards, decorations for the tree, or acetate paper stars for the windows.
- Baking - Ask Grandma to make her favourite Christmas cookie recipe or buy an editable gingerbread house to put up and decorate. Nothing beats capturing those cute cookie dough faces wrapped in grandma’s arms.
02 I Capture Your Unique Traditions
The thing that your kids most want to remember about the holidays when they grow up is the unique way your family celebrates. It could be putting out cookies for Santa and the Reindeers, singing Christmas carols before opening presents, the big family meal together at the decorated dining table or (if you celebrate in Cayman) going to the beach as a family before or after the big Christmas dinner. No matter what they are, preserving these memories is well worth the effort. You’ll look back in a few years, so happy you have these special moments captured.
03 I Update Your Family Portrait
In Cayman where family members often live all over the world, Christmas is probably the time of the year where you have the biggest chance to get everyone together in one place. Don’t miss that opportunity to get some updated family pictures taken and if you plan it early enough these photos can have a dual use - they become wonderful memories but can also be used as your family’s Christmas cards! This is a good time to hire a professional photographer to update your family portraits, but don’t leave it too late as most photographers get booked up quickly during the busy season.
04 I Get Outdoors (at Night)
Christmas time is the most energetic and exciting time to take photographs, especially because of the captivating and imaginative decorations (including Christmas lights) and the festive mood that overcomes whole communities. You can photograph during the day, but here in Cayman some of the most spectacular views can be found at night. Just think of the Christmas Tree Lighting and the Parade of Lights in Camana Bay, or the the phenomenal light show at the Bodden’s home in South Sound and the Crighton house on Shamrock Road.
Extra Smart Phone Tip
Most smart phones now have a “portrait mode” - use this feature to take some close up shots of your favourite decorations or your kids in front of a lit up tree - it puts your main subject in focus and creates that beautiful blurred out bokeh of lights in the background.
A shortened version of this article was published in the December Issue of the Camana Bay Times