Did you know your smartphone can be your best tool. Let me share with you some insider tips that I've gathered over my years of experience.

1. Choose the Right Time for That Magical Shot

Shooting outdoors during nature’s golden hours — either an hour after sunrise or before sunset. This is when the light is soft and warm, creating flattering, long shadows. But if you’re shooting during brighter hours, a shady spot is your friend.

Indoors, try to avoid backlighting for example having a large bright window behind you and use any available natural light to your advantage to light your subject.

2. Composition is Key

Before you start snapping away, think about how you want the final photo to look. For Christmas cards, it helps to have a layout in mind. I always use the rule of thirds as a guideline for a balanced composition. This is especially helpful if you’re planning to add text to your images.

3. Embrace Natural Smiles and Candid Moments

I’ve found that the most memorable shots are often the candid ones. Don’t stress about getting everyone to smile perfectly. Instead, capture them in their natural element, especially children. Encourage playing and one of my most favourite shots is giggling one another.

4. Shooting Pro-Quality Photos with Your Smartphone

I recommend keeping the lens clean and always shooting in color for more editing options later. Remember, getting closer to your subject usually results in better photo quality than using zoom.

5. Fun Ideas for Christmas Photos

I love suggesting that families capture real moments: baking, decorating, or selecting the Christmas tree. These activities bring out genuine smiles and laughter. Coordinated outfits or playful props can add an extra festive touch. And if you have pets, include them for that extra dose of cuteness!

A Few Extra Tips from My Experience

  • When photographing kids, get down to their level for a more natural perspective.
  • Try to use simple backgrounds to keep the focus on your subjects.
  • A plain wall or an out-of-focus Christmas tree can make a great backdrop.

I hope these tips help you capture your holiday moments beautifully. If you ever need professional assistance or advice, Hibbard Photography is just a Message away!