How to Shoot Better Vacation Photos

You've planned, packed, traveled and can finally enjoy vacation time with your family. You want to capture these moments for so many reasons ... to scrapbook, to make holiday cards, to show your future grandchildren!

Just breathe. As parents, we have a tendency to get a little excited when we get a moment right and we scramble to freeze it. Forever. For something to revisit when we feel like we've missed the mark. It's the cheapest therapy around, a tangible pat-on-the-back exactly when we need it. High five!

Digital photography has brought us so many incredible ways to shoot and share on the fly. But, taking too many pictures and "finding the keeper later," just makes more work. And trying to craft the perfect moment, just ends in frustration. And aren't these two major things we're trying to avoid during our precious down-time? Here are a few tips to help you relax and still get your perfect shot.

Embrace photojournalism 


Not all photos are portraits. Trying to get children to stop enjoying themselves and "say cheese!" does more harm than good. Let kids stay in their moment. Don't be stationary, move around the action, taking photos from all sides. You'll capture natural smiles and the true feeling of how the shenanigans are unfolding.

Get on the level 


This tip is crucial when photographing children or pets; and especially helpful if you’re much taller than those around you. Shooting down on your subject makes your picture seem detached and impersonal. Position yourself at eye level with your subject before you take the picture. It may feel a bit strange, but the results will change the way you photograph forever.

 Don’t forget the flash


So many times, we depend on automatic setting to determine whether or not we need a flash. Follow this simple rule to avoid shadow covered faces: If your subject’s back is to the sun, use your flash. Yes, in the daytime. This will bring your subject’s face out of the shadows and they will become the focal point of the photograph, just as you intended.

Put the camera down 

Most importantly, don't spend your vacation as a spectator behind a screen or a lens. Remember how kids spell 'love' ... t-i-m-e.