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TOP-9 Christmas Lights Photography Tips

TOP-9 Christmas Lights Photography Tips

• 06 December 2018

Shooting can have a lot of approaches, depending on plot and equipment. Night snapshots are interesting for many reasons. First, a variety of illumination would be very unusual to highlight familiar and sometimes boring places during the day. Secondly, this process is available to everyone: you do not have to go somewhere far to look for it. It is enough to go out or drive up to the center: for sure there are a lot of stunning places.

It is impossible to resist from grabbing your camera to capture one of those amazing holiday light decorations. It is true, that festive magic is created to be memorized not only with the help of gifts and parties, but great bright pictures as well. Another reason to practice your artistic taste and try to make an awesome image to look at afterwards. This nice and entertaining period for kids and adults seem to be simple to photograph, but it is better to talk about cool Christmas light ideas and its caption with smartphones or digital devices.

TOP-4 most popular cool Christmas lights ideas:

  • Fixed surface and right hour
  • Manual mode with no flash
  • RAW format and post-processing
  • ISO adjustment and no aggressive lights

Pictures may not include just specific objects, but also other surfaces and landscapes, which will definitely contribute to the quality.

There is a big choice of options:

  • purposely blurred or sharp;
  • dreamy deep or lit up;
  • natural simplicity or emphasized effects.

Walking along the central street or in a small town, everyone is willing to take away a memorable image of this beautiful period. Still, some disappointment usually comes with understanding that the picture is not transmitting that unique magic, which you have seen. Maybe, with the help of this article you are going to become more skillful to realize great examples of Christmas lights photography.

There are Christmas light photography tips how to shoot christmas lights:

  1. Do not wait for midnight
  2. Avoid extra movements and unusual motion
  3. Forget about the flash for Christmas lights photos
  4. Set white balance and exposure for each scene
  5. Use RAW format and manual mode
  6. Practice outdoor and indoor designs
  7. Praise the protagonist
  8. Open aperture as much as you can
  9. Add more light to photograph christmas lights

1. Do not wait for midnight

Obviously the illumination is on at night and not during the day. But it does not mean that the photo can not be done in the evening. The secret is the evening sky, which is dark blue and not black. This will permit your camera to concentrate on colorful contrasts without automatic lighting with flash or special settings. Digital eye will catch exactly the right color combination and provide you with a perfect snapshot.

2. Avoid extra movements and unusual motion

Usually we do not have a tripod with us, when the right moment for the best shot is coming. Still, fixed surface is always a plus in such a complicated process, because it helps to avoid handshake effect and all details look clear. It is definitely better to blur image when it is the purpose, but not a disappointing fact that can not be changed. Do not expect that successful shots come with accidents. Much prepared work should be done to obtain impressive results.

3. Forget about the flash for Christmas lights photos

Flash is absolutely not appropriate for this kind of pictures. In case you are not a well-known artists, whose works are displayed in galleries all over the worlds and sold out in a second, whether those are successful or not, do not get tempted by the flash. This effect is necessary only to lit the background or foreground. Making pictures of decorations and lights, natural effects and patience is required. The image protagonist will become invisible and the goal will not be achieved. If there is a certain distance between the object and the lens, any additional light sources will only spoil the final result.

4. Set white balance and exposure for each scene

If you have studied our previous tips and ideas for good photographers, than you have probably noticed some common advice. Keep your eyes on white balance and exposure to reach best results with less efforts. Of course, you are welcome to use post-processing editors and program software, but if you want to save your time, just learn camera settings before you go hunting for a great shot. Take a walk and choose the right angle and moment, to capture the only right shot and check weather conditions. In this way you will be able to change setting immediately, adjusting to the moment.

5. Use RAW format and manual mode

It goes without saying that RAW format is the only way to have a high quality picture. Small errors or undesired effects can be easily canceled, when you think of the right shooting mode in advance. Though modern technologies sometimes seem much more clever than individuals, do not permit your smartphone to decide on all the setting to use, while shooting specific image. When it comes to Christmas light images, leave a chance to choose modes to yourself. If it is not easy to choose to right setting, then spend some time practicing with various options and comparing them. Only after this creative process it is easier to choose the one you like most of all.

6. Practice outdoor and indoor designs

Remember that first picture is not the best one. That is why make as many shots as you can to have a possibility to get the only one. Another secret trick, which is worth trying is the UV filter removal from a lens, if you have such. This tips is not appropriate for any other picture, but only for night shooting of lights and decorations. Do not get despaired of manual mode absence. It is still possible to get great images with the help of tripod and timer for every minute shots.

7. Praise the protagonist

There is no doubt that thinking of how to take pictures of Christmas lights, you mean the tree itself. And it is true that it has to be the only protagonist with a pretty silhouette. Making a picture of it, it is good to try both options with lights on and off. It depends on the goal you want to achieve, whether it is handmade funny decoration or brilliant family portraits with magic sparkles.

Definitely every tree will have some jewellery and candles to be captured. If it is located near the window, you may open curtains and wait the right hour to shoot the perfect contrast. If it is not easy to wait, then use some diffused lights to emphasize the beauty and decorations, without losing it.

8. Open aperture as much as you can

When adding people to the picture, do not neglect the ISO settings. It has to be raised at maximum in case you can not find a fixed surface or tripod. Everyone in the picture is going to look blurry with long shutter speed. In this case even tripod will not going to help. The situation requires much attentions to these settings. If you want to know how to make Christmas light work for your, than position children or animal as close to it as possible. You will see the difference after several tries with various angles.

9. Add more light to photograph christmas lights

If one decides to make pictures indoors with family and friends, including festive decorations, additional light source is a must. Some professionals use flash, which is not mounted on a camera, but can be places in various locations to make faces brighter. There is always a way to place some lamps out or in the frame to improve general quality of the picture. Avoid aggressive sharp lamps and choose some Android applications, which are available nowadays for every smartphone owner.

Everyone dreams to become famous or at least recognized artist one day. We are doing our best to practice and learn something new. Collecting modern techniques and professional experience from all over the world, you have a possibility to refresh essential tips and hacks, mentioned in this article. These are the most important steps to be made, when you want to understand how to photograph Christmas lights.

Summarize just remember crucial points to take pictures of christmas lights:

  • No flash
  • No handshake
  • Maximum ISO, if no tripod
  • Manual mode
  • Raw format

It is always worth trying, so start now and do not give up!

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