Whatever the reason for all this positivity, I want to tell you about my secret photography weapon. For the last few months, I have been listening the Two Hosers Photo Show, a weekly podcast created by two Canadians (ie. hosers) to help amateur photographers go from taking so-so photos to really understanding their camera's capabilities and getting the best possible photos out of their digital SLR. One of those hosers just happens to be the photographer (and Daddy) behind Lisa's blog, Schwartz Chronicles, and today I'm excited to be hosting Captain Canada himself. Today he's here to offer a few tips on making your holiday photographs the best they can be:
My name is Adam (A.K.A. Captain Canada on my wife’s blog) and like Amanda I truly enjoy photography. More specifically I love taking pictures of my kids. I am a father of two young children, Sarah is four and Jack is two. Like a lot of parents I got into photography with the desire to take nice pictures of my kids. Or at least that’s what I told my wife, to justify all the future photography purchases I planned on making.
What began as a hobby quickly turned into a passion for learning how to make my pictures better. A good friend of mine (Al Attridge), who happensto be a professional photographer, helped me a lot with various tips and insights as I progressed. Once he realized my dedication (and nerdiness), he suggested we create a podcast devoted to helping new DSLR users figure out how to make better photos. We chat photography with a dedicated weekly focus in a very casual light-hearted way.
With the holidays just around the corner, I thought I would provide a few tips that might help you take better pictures this season.
1) Get an external flash. With the weather getting colder and sundown coming earlier, be prepared to take most of your pictures indoors. With less light available to work with you are going to use your flash a lot. I don’t mean to burst anyone’s bubble but the pop-up flash on your camera is not very good. An external flash with a head that swivels should be on everyone’s holiday wish list. You will see an immediate improvement in your pictures.
2) Look for interesting light. This could mean using window light to illuminate the children’s faces as they open presents, or maybe strategic placement of a string of Christmas lights as the kids help trim the tree. Al took this picture last year of my daughter Sarah.
3) Colour coordinating group photos. Sometimes just getting my kids dressed can be deemed an accomplishment, but when it comes to family photo taking coordinating matching colours and creating contrast from the background can make your holiday photos pop. I took the picture below for a few friends in Steveston.
4) Make it happen. Sometimes a great photo just happens; your child decides to take their first few steps and you just happen to be holding your camera. Sometimes you can coax it a little. If you live in Vancouver, VanDusen Gardens is spectacular during December and catching the pure joy of the kids on the Stanley Park Christmas train is a great photo opportunity. If you don’t live in Vancouver, then maybe you should consider moving.
5) Take your pictures at magic hour. The first hour after sunrise, and the last hour before sundown, are great times for taking pictures. With the sun low in the sky you can use it to illuminate your subjects with its nice warm glow. You won’t have to worry about the shadows that might disguise those cute cuddly faces. If you decide not to buy the external flash, this is your bread and butter.
Thank you, Adam, for sharing these valuable tips. We already have our Stanley Park Christmas train tickets - now we'll have to go check out VanDusen Gardens as well!
If you are the proud owner of a DSLR camera but you find yourself shooting mostly in the camera's automatic modes, you need to check out The Two Hosers Photo Show. Seriously. You'll be amazed at how listening to two hosers talk about photography (well, not just any two hosers, but these ones specifically) can really improve your knowledge and your outcomes. And possibly even your life. (Witty banter? Hells, yeah!)
The podcast is free and can be downloaded from www.twohosers.com or, better yet, subscribe to the whole shebang on iTunes and get new episodes as soon as they are posted. If you want to
|Also linking up with Bruna because,|
hey, we're all friends here!