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Photo Contest Insider Blog

Tips for Planning and Capturing a Christmas Inspired Photo Shoot

December 22, 2017

They say Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, so why not try and capture some of that holiday magic through a Christmas inspired photo shoot?

Whether you want to put together a team of creative professionals to help you bring your vision to life, or simply grab a couple of your closest friends to photograph those special memories – here are our top tips for planning and capturing a Christmas inspired photo shoot!

tips for planning and capturing a Christmas inspired photo shoot

Put together a Christmas inspired moodboard

One of the easiest ways you can gather inspiration and determine a specific style for a photo shoot is to put together a moodboard during the planning stage. You can easily search on platforms such as Pinterest for inspiration, or you can also perform a Google Images search or save images directly from some of your favorite blogs and online magazines.

Arrange these into a collage or grid-like design so that all of your ideas and inspirations are easy to see at once. Now that your creative juices have begun to flow, it will be a lot easier and more fun to plan your upcoming Christmas themed photo shoot.

Gather Christmas themed props

One of the easiest ways to embrace the festive season in your photo shoots is to include props of a Christmas inspired nature. These might be Santa hats, reindeer antler accessories, Christmas trees, baubles, tinsel, string lights or more.

You can easily get creative with your props by creating your own too. There are tons of tutorials on platforms such as Pinterest to help you recreate an array of festive items and accessories.

tips for planning and capturing a Christmas inspired photo shoot

Choose your location

Where can you capture your photos to further enhance and communicate your Christmas theme? While beach and river photos can look stunning, they don’t quite capture the Christmas aesthetic as well as a woodland or forest scene.

Alternatively, you might want to photograph your scenes indoors. There are a wide variety of options you can pursue here, such as shooting in a festively-decorated living room, or even at a table laid out for a delicious Christmas dinner.

Choose your festive color scheme

There are actually a range of Christmas inspired color schemes you can use in your photo shoot, and while red and green seems to be the most popular, you certainly don’t have to stick to it.

Other festive pairings include silver and gold or you can opt for an alternative color scheme through using pastels or even shades of pink. Don’t be afraid to play around with the more non-traditional hues to create a unique photo shoot celebrating this magical period.

tips for planning and capturing a Christmas inspired photo shoot

Embrace bokkeh

If there was ever the perfect season for capturing gorgeous bokkeh in your photos, it’s Christmas. With string light decorations and plenty of glitter about, make use of these fun elements to get that magical out-of-focus blur in your images.

To achieve this look, you’ll need to make sure your DSLR is in manual mode and set a large aperture such as 1.8. Remember, when it comes to bokkeh, the larger the aperture, the better! Then, set your camera up in front of some string lights or something else that emits light and capture away.

Get animals involved too

Is there anything more adorable than a puppy or kitten in a Christmas hat? Even if your main subject is a human model, there’s nothing wrong with introducing an animal (or even someone’s beloved pet) for that extra cute factor. Christmas is all about family and friends (even the furry variety) after all!

Alternatively, if you’re opting for more of an ethereal or enchanting Christmas inspired photo shoot, why not try and include some deer, horses, or any other animal which will help you to convey the magic of this season? While a lot more planning might go into a shoot of this nature, the end results are sure to be worth it.

tips for planning and capturing a Christmas inspired photo shoot

Make your Christmas inspired photo shoot memories last

Once you’ve finished capturing your beautiful Christmas inspired photos, you don’t have to stop at simply sharing them in your portfolio or with your social media following. Turn them into keepsakes that you can give as gifts to loved ones, or even sell through an online shop if you wish to.

These might include transforming your favorite images from the shoot into Christmas cards, post cards, or even gift tags to attach to your presents. Alternatively, you might also want to turn your Christmas inspired photos into canvases or framed prints. The options really are endless here, so get creative and see what other fun things you can create using these images.

tips for planning and capturing a Christmas inspired photo shoot

Will you be planning and capturing a Christmas themed photo shoot this festive season? Be sure to follow the tips outlined above to achieve your most magical and enchanting Christmas shoot yet!

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