Here are a few guidelines that help me make the most of the picture-taking opportunities. I hope they will help you, too.
- Make sure your batteries are charged and ready and BRING YOUR CAMERA WITH YOU!!! If you don't have your camera or the batteries are dead or the memory card is full, you'll be sad to miss the opportunity to take a picture.
- Be sensitive to people's desire to be in a picture or not. But don't be afraid to gently remind the person that the purpose of your taking the picture is so that you can remember them and their participation in your life.
- Don't let taking pictures take the place of good conversation and actual participation in the event. It's us avid shutterbugs that enter this mode sometimes. It's OK to put the camera down and MAKE the memories instead of just capturing them.
- In addition to capturing the people, take pictures of the details. What did the table setting look like? What about the meal? Decorations?
- Is there a special tradition in your family? Try to capture it!
- Keep it simple. Make sure you fill the frame with your subject.
- Check the background and four corners of your frame. Make sure to include what you want to include and exclude what you don't want to include.
- Don't be afraid to move the wrapping paper, glass, messy plate, or whatever before you trip the shutter. Try to minimize with what is competing with your main subject.
- Soften the flash with a bit of tissue or tissue paper over the flash. This will cut down on glare, harsh shadows, and red eye and soften the lighting.