Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Photographing Your Christmas Tree!

If you are like me, one of your favorite parts of Christmas is putting up the Christmas Tree and enjoying it throughout the holidays. Paired with that, however, is my general dislike of all the photos I take of my Christmas Tree!! They never seem to truly capture the beauty of my tree.

When I used the flash, it was just plain boring...no glimmering lights, too much overall light...a very harsh looking tree. It's a bad look all around...

Without the flash they were blurry, and man was my white balance off!! Here is a typical "no flash" shot.

So, thanks to the wonders of the internet I found some great tips for photographing your tree! And as you will see at the end...they really do work! ;)
  1. Use a tripod. This is probably obvious to most, but it wasn't to me! I often forget about my awesome tripod that lives in the front closet!!
  2. Let the light of your tree be your only light. Don't use any overhead or table lighting.
  3. Use Manual or Shutter-priority (Tv) mode on your camera.
  4. Use a high f- stop and a low shutter speed. I will put the exact exposures under each photo. I messed around with the shutter speed. If it was too long, the lights were almost too bright...too short and they didn't sparkle enough for me!
  5. I happened to use a high ISO on these...1600. I tried some with a lower ISO, but to be honest, I wasn't as happy with the results.
  6. Be sure to listen to some good Christmas music and eat some cookies while photographing the tree. Okay, that's not really a rule...but I really think it makes the whole experience better!
Here are my photos. And full disclosure...these were taken last year. Right now the only thing under my tree is a dog toy and a gift for Mirielle from somebody else! ;)

(3.2", f/22, ISO 1600)

(2", f/22, ISO 1600)

So hop to it! Let's see those tree photos! :) And Merry Christmas!


Melanie Stanczyk said...

Thank you for the tips! I'm gonna try them!

Ryzmomplus2 said...

def going to try these... and get that shot of all the gifts under the tree (before) they open!

supermom said...

wow, the pics are gorgeous!

Trish said...

Great post, Em!! Love these tips!!

Laina Lamb said...

Great post!!! Thank you!

Jewel said...

Your pic turned out so beautiful! What a difference. Thanks so much for sharing these tips, going to try them out tonight!

Vanessa, Florida, USA said...

Your photo and your tree look beautiful! Thanks for these tips :)

BabyBokChoy said...

AWESOME TIP EM!!!!!!!! Now, will you please send me your awesome tripod?? LOL.

Janelle said...

gorgeous pics! thanks for the tips!

jamie said...

THAT would require going off of auto...right? (LOL)...yikes...thanks so much for the tips and insight. those last photos are beautiful!!!!