Taking a family photo for an annual holiday card is a tradition for many American families—and with good reason. It’s the perfect time to reflect on a year of laughs and tears and up and downs, while creating a permanent documentation of those experiences that will last a lifetime. And it’s also the perfect way to keep family and friends updated, especially those who live far away. It’s natural, then, for us to try to make our family photos the best ever—though sometimes that can be easier said than done.
If you’ve had a hard time in the past nailing the perfect family photo, or if the mere thought or trying to wrangle your five- and three-year-olds and convince them to sit still for more than 30 seconds Freaks. You. Out., follow these tips, from Laura Novak, Founder and CEO of Little Nest Portraits. She can help you simplify the process and capture the perfect holiday car this holiday and for many years to come.
Make photography fun for your kids!: While it’s tempting to force everyone into poses and say cheese, there’s a huge difference between a natural and forced smile. Get your kids in their natural habitat and make fun with a game or fun activity to capture genuine expressions and capture their true personalities.
Select the card you want before you take the photo: You know the expression you can’t fit a square peg in a round hole? The same goes for photos and holiday cards. Chose the card design you like first and snap your photo with that in mind— it will dictate the orientation, crop and composition of the photo you should take.
Take your photo at your kids’ best time of day: If you can avoid it, try not to take the photo after school when your kids are tired and hungry. They’ll be happiest when their bellies are full and their well rested—if you can manage, after breakfast would be perfect.
Choose clothing that represents your family’s style: Embrace your family’s personal style and celebrate it in your holiday card photo. Choose items that complement your child’s personality. Don’t try to fit your family into what you think it should be. While you might not be the biggest fan, the Kardashians always do an amazing job communicating their family’s style to friends and family in their annual holiday card.
Outsource: If you’re feeling overwhelmed and busy, outsource your card. Photography studios often allow ordering on the spot—and you can take care of your holiday gifts at the same time with prints, albums and wall art for everyone on your list.