Monday, January 11, 2010

Take Those January Photos!

Yes, I know, after Christmas there probably seems little need to keep pulling the camera out -- but not so! There are many wonderful photo ops for January, especially if you live in a snowy climate. Of course, January is also a good time to just commit more to your photo hobby. Check out supporting websites and blogs like 365 Days Photo Project and Project 365. (I know -- it would have been nice to hear about this by Jan. 1, but it's not too late!)

Here are some fun, photo topics for the month of January:

* New Year's Eve/Day Party or family time. (Of course, if you were in NYC, that's even better.)

* Snowmen. (Oh, those are fun!)
* Kids bundled up to play outside (those are usually very colorful and fun.)
* Winter in tropical or desert climates (in order to make others drool)
* Sledding, snowboarding, skiing . . . . you get the idea.
* Icicles hanging off your roof.
* Fresh snowfall on trees. (And that means soon after the snowfall before the wind blows it away.)
* Family around a cozy fireplace.
* Plates of cookies, muffins; bowls of chili, soup; colorful cups of hot co-co.
* Family game or craft nights.

These "every day" things make some of the best, most memorable photos for your albums. It's the little things that grown children love to remember and talk about.

I do want to caution you that taking photos in bright snow can be tricky. I could say more about basic photography skills that will help you, but I'll just offer a few basic tips:

* Check the settings on your point-and-shoot camera. Often there is a "scenic" or "creative" mode that allows you to fine-tune your settings for things like "snow." (Or "foliage", "fireworks", etc.) This greatly aids you in exposure and white balance (so you won't get that blue snow.)
* Be careful that you do not "shoot" into direct sunlight. Make sure the sun is in front of your subjects -- or better yet, wait for early morning or evening or overcast days (just try not to get the overcast sky in your photo, it could really mess up the exposure, esp. with snow photos.)
* If you have a point-and-shoot camera, and use creative modes, make sure you put the setting on "action" for sledding or skiing shots. This will increase your shutter speed so you can capture the action (instead of getting a big blur.)
* For indoor shots, place your subjects as close to a window as you can for natural light -- then you can turn off the flash. It's harder up north (where it is so dark), but it makes for better-looking photos. Bring in extra light if you cannot use a window and if your flash is too bright, go into your flash settings and just turn it down.

I hope these tips inspire you to keep those cameras clicking during this beautiful time of year!


Handy Man, Crafty Woman said...

Great tips, esp. for us scrapbookers! :-)