I love taking pictures. I love the feel of the camera in my hands and the sound of the shutter. I have hard drives filled with thousands and thousands of photos. I have drawers dedicated to lose photos. It’s an obsession, really. 😉 And while I love taking stylized photos for the blog, or product photos for my shop, I have realized that my favorite photos are of our every day moment, photographs of the little things that make me happy. Here are ten of my tried and true tips for capturing the little moments in life.
1. Keep your camera close. It’s really hard to get that perfect shot of that amazing moment if your camera is packed away in the closet. Keep your camera charged and located in an easily accessible (but safe!) spot. It get’s a little tricky with stairs. I find myself running up and down the stairs too often. I try to keep my my camera in one spot upstairs and one location downstairs, to make it a bit easier to find. While I prefer to take photos on my DSLR, when I don’t have it nearby, my phone camera works, too. Though, let’s face it, my phone is rarely charged. 😉
2. Have a fast shutter speed. Have you ever taken a photo, only to look at it later a realize your subject is totally blurry? So annoying, right? Always try to keep your shutter speed quick! This will eliminate blurriness, especially if you’re photographing an active two year old.
The best way to keep that shutter speed clicking fast is learning to shoot in manual. You’ll have much more control over how fast your shutter speed is and how blurry your background appears. When it comes to phone photos, try to photograph in well lit areas. You’ll see less of a blur and a clearer, crisper picture.
3. Click before you freak out. Remember when Ellie dumped half a box of cereal all over our recently swept kitchen floor? Or that one time I sewed right through my finger? Got the needle stuck and everything? I really want to freak out. Really, really bad. But, being the obsessive picture taker I am, I had to stop and take a photo. While these situations are ideal in the moment, it’s so fun to look back at them a few weeks, months (sometimes years!) later. Taking a few minutes to click calms me down too, so I don’t flip a lid.
4. Capture your favorite things. I love looking back at my scrapbook my mom made and remembering my favorite doll or blanket. It’s so important to capture your favorites, and your kid’s favorites as well! One of my favorites, Ellie’s tiny painted toes. My little E loves having her toenails painted. I couldn’t resist snapping this photo of her little feet dangling off the rocking chair.
5. Be sneaky. I believe it’s a universal rule that if you pull out a camera around a child, they will automatically stop whatever cute thing they were doing. Am I right? Keep your camera close and be sneaky pulling it out! I’ve found myself peeking behind a wall or hiding in the hallway in attempts to get that perfect shot. Most of the time, if I’m sneaky about it, it works!
6. Take a step back. Too often I try to crop out the pile of laundry in the corner or the strewn toys all over the floor. While I feel like that’s ok sometimes, I also feel it’s important to capture those little details. Give it a few years, and looking at those heaps of laundry will make you laugh. It’s fun to see how the furniture has been rearranged, the wall color painted over, and Pinterest projects replaced with new ones.
7. Don’t forget the details. Zoom in on the mess on the floor (and cereal crumbs in cracks between the wood planks! Eek!) Photograph your child’s tiny painted fingernails or crazy bedhead. Crop in on their boots in the snow or hands holding their first pumpkin. These zoomed in, detailed shots are visually appealing and add additional features to the story you are telling.
8. Tell a story. Your photos should always tell a story. Whether it be the story of your afternoon at the park, or the excitement on Christmas morning, try to capture that story through your photographs. A picture says a thousand words, make it count! In the photo above, Ellie couldn’t decide what pair of shoes to wear. She tried on each pair about five times before deciding. Simply getting a photograph of her face or top portion of her body, never would have told the story of her indecisiveness (and love of shoes!)
9. It IS photo worthy. So what if your house isn’t Pinterest perfect. Who cares if your outfits don’t match, hair isn’t done, and Cheerios pepper the floor. Your life, your little moments, they ARE photo worthy. You’ll be so much happier knowing you caught your kids cuddling on the couch, instead of missing the moment because you had to move the laundry out of the shot. Capture the messy parts of your life, along with the picture perfect ones.
10. Put your camera down. I have to remind myself of this one daily! After I have taken all the shots I need, I remind myself to put my camera away for awhile. It’s easier for me to enjoy the moment if I’m not caught up fixing lighting, adjusting my aperture, and finding the right angle. 🙂
Have any tips for capturing every day moments? I’d love to hear your suggestions! Happy Friday! XO