I feel very bold even writing that title! This is by no means a professional ‘how to’ post. It’s just a few ideas that might help you document your Easter business of egg hunts and days out in a slightly different way than usual. And they can all be taken with whatever camera you happen to be using, whether it’s a fancy DSLR, a point and shoot or your phone. It’s a true saying that the best camera for the job is the one you have with you!
Get up close
All too often we try to squeeze as much as possible into the frame of our camera, but the result is that there is no real focal point. The eye skips all over the image and doesn’t really have anywhere to land. But when you start to zoom in, you create a real point of focus. So think about what it is you want to capture and then get in close! With phones (iPhones in particular, in my experience) it helps to move physically close to keep your picture sharp.
Get the action
I bet you’ve spent a lot of time and had a lot of arguments with kids over getting them to stand still for the camera – I know I certainly have. So I eventually gave up! And I’m so glad I did. To be honest, I’d rather have a slightly blurry shot of the kids having a great time running around than a perfectly sharp one of them glaring at me with red eyes from all the crying over smiling for the camera! So forget perfect and go for action. You really won’t be disappointed!
Record the craft
If it didn’t already come home from school, it’s bound to be in progress on your kitchen table! Or maybe you have somehow escaped the Pinterest inspired glue-fest that happens most holidays in our house! When I was sourcing photos for this post, I came across these from a few years ago and they really made me smile. So even though the mess at the time had me running for the hills, I am glad I stopped to take these photos. Again I went in close and didn’t even have the boys in the photos (Patrick was actually scowling in one of them and it has the potential to ruin our fragile pre-teen relationship!). I miss the days when they asked to do things like this.
Get up close with the animals
If you have small kids, there’s every chance you’re going to encounter some animals this Easter! We are big fans of Castle Espie WWT and when the boys were smaller, The Ark Open Farm. The temptation when you’re there, however, is to take the same photos you took the last time of your kids feeding the ducks or looking at the cows and pigs. For a change of perspective, why not let the animals take centre stage? These photos were all taken on my iPhone and edited using Instagram.
Don’t forget the flowers
This is such a great time of the year to capture the beauty of spring around us. (Ok, I know it tried snowing on the first day of the holidays, but work with me!) Even in my driveway I’m met with the buds and blossoms of forsythia in my neighbour’s garden, and I find it hard not to take a photo of cherry blossom trees anytime I pass them! Even the humble daffodil looks stunning when the light hits the petals just right. So go on, be brave and look foolish standing under a blossom tree to get the blue sky coming through the branches. If I can do it, so can you! The proof is right here – tree photos again taken with iPhone and a few odd looks!
Think about the light
I have a complete obsession with light, but that’s a whole other blog post! What I will suggest for now is that you look at where the light is. Is it shining on your kids’ faces? If so, they’re going to squint and you’ll have shadows everywhere in your photos. Early morning and late afternoon light is perfect for good photos, and I almost want to dare you to try shooting into the sun! If you get the subject of your photo in front of the light, you can get stunning silhouette photos. Honestly, it’s worth a try and practice does make perfect.
Get in the shot!
I know, you hate having your photo taken! It’s the one comment I am guaranteed to hear on any family or wedding shoot. And I hear you! I hate it too. But you need to be in the shot. Even just one or two. Your kids will thank you for it in the future, and they won’t think you look awful. They’ll just be glad to have photos of them with their mum or dad. So stretch out your arm or grab a selfie stick, put the camera on the timer or give it to someone else, and then push the button. Be present and be documented. You won’t regret it!
I hope these ideas are helpful to you and that you have a wonderful time over the Easter holiday whatever you’re up to! Feel free to share your photos taken using these tips over on my Facebook page, and if you’ve any suggestions for other tips you’d like to see in future blog posts, give me a shout!