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-   -   Getting Ready for Your Christmas and New Year's Photos (

mtclimber Dec 20, 2008 1:44 PM

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Every year we look forward to Christmas and New Year's for all of the photo opportunities that they can produce because of family gatherings and memorable Holiday celbrations.

(a) This being December 20th, it is an excellent time to be sure that your camera's batteries are charged, as well as, perhaps a convenient spare set.

(b) This is also the time you can think about posing your photos.If youpose folks against a light color wall or even some decorative pannelling, be sure that they are not right up close next to that background. If they are close, you will really create some harsh shadows behind them in your photo. Instead, have them stand 24" to 30" in front of that background to soften the shadows.

(c) Withthe shortened length of our winter days, a lot of your photos will probably be taken inside using your camera's built-in flash unit. Please remember that the average Flash Range of most point and shoot cameras is just 10' to 12.' You can lenghten that Flash Range some bysetting your camera toAuto ISO. With that change your camer's Flash Range now increases to about 10' to 18.' That will help you can some of those large group photos where you really have to back-up a long way to fit everyone into the photo.

(d) With very few exceptions, most point and shoot digital cameras are sensitive to and not designed tooperate in an atmosphere where there is falling rain or snow. So please be sure to protect your camera from the moisture gremlin.

(e) If you want to take photos of Christmas lighting displays be sure to takeyour photos using a tripod due to the very slow shutter speed you will be using. The very best time to take outdoor lighting displays isat dusk, rather than at night time. Look for that time called "dusk" right after the sun has decended below the horizon, but before the blackness of the night has really settled into your photo environment. Check out the attached photo for some ideas.

(f) If you are taking photo of folks wearing glasses, have them tilt their head slightly so that the flash do not create a glare on their glasses. The same is true with glass and mirrors. If you have glass or a mirror in your photo environment, don't take a photo when you are perfectly perpendicular to a mirror or a piece of glass. The flash is going to be reflected right back into your photo.

(g) Above all, have fun taking your Holiday photos. Be relaxed, but be sure to think ahead and plan out your shots a bit. Doing that will pay off in the form of some great Holiday Photos. Good Luck and have fun!

Sarah Joyce

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