As the most energetic and exciting time for family and friends, Christmas turns out to be a perfect time to create images. There must be something you would like to capture, the natural elements, the imaginative decorations, the captivating Christmas lights, the festive mood all over the community. You definitely plan to show your most evocative images on the social media. Here are some unexpected tricks to level up your holiday photography.  

  1. Bokeh shots

Bokeh Christmas lights shots are always popular in Christmas. You can see it every year on the social media. It can be seen as a photography technique, which seems to be complicate but relatively simple. To take bokeh shots, you need a camera lens with a large aperture. With large aperture, as larger as possible, the Christmas lights become little balls in the out-of-focus background. To upgrade the effect, you should have a subject focused in your photo, it can be your family member, your pet or something else you would like to show. You would be surprised by the pop image and the beautiful Christmas lights.

 

To make things a little special, you can put the light in front of your subject. Thus, your subject will be partly covered by the bokeh lights, different from those with lights behind. You can also have different shaped bokeh, such as star, hearts, or any other you like. All you need to do is to create little cutout to mask your lens. Another easier way to change the shape is to try different apertures. The larger the aperture is , the rounder the ball is. A slightly change in aperture may result in different shapes. You may have hexagonal or octagonal shape based on the blades of your lens.

  1. Burst mode

As a gathering festival, photographic opportunities are all over Christmas. There are certain moments that are filled with facial expressions and series of festive events. The food preparation, the putting-up of decorations, the wrapping and opening of gifts, the table setting, the celebrations.....When shooting these activities, you should switch your camera to burst mode or continuous shooting mode. By using the burst mode, the camera takes a lot of shots and captures everything of the joyful and unique moments. You surely can get some excellent photos showing the natural but perfect expressions. Do remember to pick a focal point to highlight the subject. You also need to fill your frame with the subject. You can adjust your zoom or move yourself a little closer to the subject. These two little tips will have an immediate impact on your photos.

 

  1. Macro photography

Macro photography becomes much more trendy recently. And Christmas is a perfect time to try this popular and flattering photography. There are plenty of smaller things around, the ornaments on the Christmas tree, the cute gingerbread, the special garland, the sweets in the bowl and many others. You can choose the macro mode on your camera. Things turn out to be much better if you have macro lens. To shoot macro photos, you should use a wide but proper aperture to avoid the blurry image. The recommended aperture for macro photography is around f/8 to f/16. Besides, a slower shutter speed is required to allow enough light to fall on the sensor. As for the most difficult part, the focusing technique, here is an effective and workable method. Get close to the subject and check the frame of the photo through the viewfinder of the camera. Then move back and forth slowly to find the place where the right part of the subject is in focus, that is the focusing location for your photography. The macro photos would add much more fun to your Christmas.

 

  1. Time-lapse photography

If you expect your Christmas to be recorded in a totally different but special way, you should try time-lapse photography. It would be the most wonderful and impressive video you have ever had for Christmas.

 

Firstly, you should choose a proper place to settle your camera. The location should not be disturbed by the passer-by and capture the scene you want to show. You can also use a web camera with your computer if you do not have spare camera. Then, set the interval between each shot with an intervalometer. The interval time depends on how long the recorded event is and how long the video you want to have. The frame rate of video is usually 24-25, that means a second of video equates to 24-25 shots. If you want a 10-second video, you may need to take about 250 images. Therefore, you should set the interval time according to the time length of your event. Make sure there is spare battery and large memory card. After all shots are done, you can use Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop to edit them into video.

Hope you enjoy today’s special tricks for your Christmas photography. Wish you have a wonderful Christmas time! 

Image resource: Unsplash

 

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December 16, 2020 — Alina Liu

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