Summer is right around the corner and that means it’s time to start planning your family’s next big adventure. While it’s true that this year’s activities may look a little different, there are still plenty of ways to create lasting memories as long as fresh air and sunshine are involved.
Ready to turn your average summer snaps into something worthy of the mantle? A trip to the park or a walk around the lake is all you need to get started. Give your photography a professional touch with these expert tips for capturing smiles in the great outdoors.
Tip 1: Avoid photographing in direct sunlight
No one wants to see blinking faces in their family photography. To capture the perfect image, always photograph in the shade with your subjects turned towards the direction of sun. This trick provides flattering lighting and reduces the chances you’ll see squinting or sunburn.
Tip 2: Check your surroundings
Don’t let distractions take away your perfect shot. Pay close attention to the foreground (what is in front of the subject) and the background (what is behind the subject) to make sure there isn’t any visual clutter like cars, street signs, or debris that might pull focus in your photography.
Tip 3: Watch the weather report
Photographing outdoors can come with a few surprises from Mother Nature. Pay attention to the weather report and avoid rainy, windy, or especially hot or cold days. Smiles come more naturally when everyone is comfortable.
Tip 4: Aim for the golden hour
Timing is everything when it comes to outdoor photography. Give your subjects the best lighting possible by photographing in the early morning or late afternoon (known as the golden hour) when the sun isn’t highest in the sky.
Tip 5: Expression over perfection.
The best pictures are often the most spontaneous. Instead of posing your subjects for every shot, focus on capturing authentic moments that happen naturally. Don’t worry about making things perfect – it’s okay to have a hair out of place as long as there is a big smile!
Tip 6: Safety first
When photographing outdoors, it’s important to be mindful of your surroundings. Avoid posing children in trees, by water or busy streets and never photograph on train tracks or anywhere else that could be dangerous. No shot is worth putting anyone in danger.
Tip 7: Keep it neutral
Less means more when it comes to style choices. Avoid bright colored or patterned clothing and stick to simple neutral colors that occur in nature. This gives your photography a timeless appeal and helps avoid drawing the eye away from your subjects.
If you would rather be in front of the camera than behind it, let the professional photographers at JCPenney Portraits take the lead. Learn more about scheduling an Outdoor Photography session at a location near you.