6 Tips For Getting Your Best Summer Photos
Temperatures rise, the days seem to last forever, and we sneak off for the front yard with a glass of lemonade as often as we can. Summertime!
Not only do we love photography, but we want to help you capture all of summer’s best memories as well, so we asked some our our favorite photographer friends for their advice when it comes to taking great summer snapshots.
Let the Kids Play & Get On Their Level!
Summer is a great time to get photographs of your kids just being themselves and having fun. Take them to a pretty spot and let them play! Try getting down on your child’s level to really capture the moment from their perspective. This shot is of my daughter with her special bear that she’s had since she was a baby. This bear is the symbol of her childhood to me and I know as she gets older this picture will mean so much to both of us.
Tonya Whitlock is a mom, a book worm, and a lover of trees, but above all else, she is a professional portrait photographer. Tonya has a degree in photography and 10+ years of experience photographing children. She feels very fortunate to have found her niche doing something that she truly loves and which inspires her daily. See her work online at Cherry Blossom Portraits.
Moments Are the Life of a Photograph!
It is challenging to document these moments as they unfold without interfering and altering the environment or the emotion. I find it helpful to enter a scene as an observer first and a photographer second. As I watch the events unfold I can start to anticipate the moments that I need to document. Being able to document raw emotions that are encapsulated in solitary moments requires anticipation and understanding. Anticipation of what you know will most likely happen, and understanding that if it happens once, it will probably happen again.
So what can you do?
Have your camera ready! As you see the moments unfold, be prepared.
Don’t intrude into the moment too far. Have a fly-on-the-wall mentality and remember that you can document more pure moments by staying back a little bit.
Robert Johnson is an international photojournalist for a non-profit organization and a Chicagoland based wedding photographer. While he has photographed assignments on six continents, he is still intrigued by stories and how an image can speak to the soul. See more of his work at Rojo Foto Design.
Get Them When They Least Expect It!
I find that the key to capturing the best images of family members is to capture them when they are not expecting it. This is especially true for young children. Thier excitement can be the best part of the photograph.
The way to get both feet off the ground and capture the action is to take a series of shots. Don’t stop to look at the screen on the back of the camera. If you do you will miss out on the magic moment that gives you the excitement that you are looking to capture. By being positioned low and out of his line of sight, you will not get a posed look that so many little kids show you when the see the camera pointed at them. Keep it out of sight and you will get that amazing smile and the joy that is being so innocent.
Rick Scalzo‘s style is whatever interests him in the moment. Nothing isn’t worth looking at long enough to truly see what is within the image. Capturing that image is his way of sharing the world through my eyes. Rick prides himself on perfecting the art of taking a simple subject and pulling out so much more within the image. Because nothing is truly as is seems. See more of his work and contact him online at Within The Image.
Watch the Horizon!
When taking landscape or sunset photos with a horizon, it seems our tendency is to try to get that horizon perfectly straight and in the middle of the frame. The problem with composing the photo with the horizon right in the middle is that we can miss an interesting foreground or a dramatic sky. Instead, compose your shot so that the horizon is either the top or bottom third of the photo. This will reveal scenery in the sky or foreground which often makes a much more interesting photograph.
This photograph was taken this past June in Nosara, Costa Rica, a small surfing town on the Pacific Ocean.
Tony Hughes, a Wedding & Portrait Photographer who can be found online at www.tandshughesphotography.com, works with his wife Sharon. They love that they can work together to share their passion for photography, and have travelled the world documenting people’s happiest days.
Let Boys Be Boys!
I took this shot while these four little guys were playing. I chose a pretty location in light shade with the sun a little bit off to the side and back of the boys. Use a high shutter speed to capture the action. We let them play and just waited for a fun moment. Just be ready with your camera and let boys be boys!
Laura Towle has nearly two decades of portrait and wedding photography experience. She has earned a stellar reputation for her specialty portraiture work, whether it be pictures of newborns, families or high school students. You can find more of her work at www.lauratowle.com.
The Rule of Thirds!
Finding the right moment to take the picture – That’s something you’ll have to train your eye for. There is no “perfect” picture. But there are some that will draw you in a little more.
A good way to make your images stand out a little further is to think of the “Rule of Thirds”. As you look through your viewfinder, imagine that there is a tic-tac-toe board over everything. Place your subjects where the lines cross. This is a common trick that is used by many photographers and will really change your photos for the better. But with every rule, remember, there are times to break it!
David Lewis of Digitalfreeze has been shooting for years now, and has worked his way up from point and shoot cameras to todays DSLRs. Visit his site to view more of his work or to get in contact.
Bonus Tip! Manage the Context
Framing: Watch the limbs. Make sure not to crop out part of the feet or hands.
Lighting: Avoid shooting in direct sunlight. Sun tends to be too harsh and causes shadows underneath the eyes and makes our subjects squint. Look for shade or somewhere with even light. Best time of the day to shoot is near sunset. What we call the “golden hour.”
Surroundings: Use the location to the fullest. Take a step back and use your background to compliment your subjects.
Jiho Park is a lifestyle photographer primarily in the Chicago area whose work also takes him out of state, and all over the place. His passion is photojournalism and storytelling for weddings and he explains his style as “capturing a moment while the subjects are interacting and natural, and not heavily posed.” His Lilly Photography is a Wedding and lifestyle photography studio specializing in creative wedding storying telling and artistic portraiture.
Do you have any advice you’d like to share? Please comment, and feel free to show us your best summer shots, too!
Bill Jacobs BMW in Naperville is happy to support local businesses such as these photography studios in order to help our community grow. To view our current available inventory, check out our website.