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Tuesday Morning Tidy: Photography Tips

With upcoming vacations, graduations and celebrations, it couldn't hurt to be ready for those photo opps, right?!

At one point in my past, I did a little photography on the weekends, mostly taking family photos and documenting baby milestones. It was fun until I had my own children, and I truly found the business side of things very tedious. However, I'm happy to share a few tips for getting those great photos!

Rule of thirds. For a well-composed image (this doesn't really apply to selfies), you'll want to divide your image into thirds and place the focal point at one of those intersections. For a landscape, you'll want to be careful not to divide your image in half with the horizon line, by placing that line in the upper or lower third as shown above.

Lighting. It's best to have lighting coming from the side or front of your subjects, unless you want a halo effect. Try not to take portraits with the sun directly overhead. If you're interested in experimenting with lighting, try the "Golden Hours" when the sun is rising or setting.

Depth of Field. With an SLR, you can achieve varying looks with shallow depth, thus emphasizing the sharpness of your subject while blurring the background. On an iPhone, you can achieve a similar look in portrait mode. Have fun with this!

Details. If you're planning to create a photo book or put together a slideshow of your trip, don't forget the details! A photo of your special meal can be fun on a page with a selfie of the family, and a beautiful landscape image can make a great spread in between snapshots of everyone on the trip. These special images interspersed will help tell your story.

Candid. While portraits are wonderful, sometimes the best photos are a bit more candid. Have your phone ready to capture a genuine moment when they're not looking. That photo of grandma looking for seashells with your child may be the best of the trip!

If you're interested in assembling a photo book following your vacation or big event, check out this earlier post. I've also had good results with apps like Chatbooks.

There are so many resources out there to help improve your skills, but the best way to do this is to take tons of photos and experiment!

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