1. Prepare for Christmas Morning
It might sound obvious but make sure you have a fully charge battery, that you have a clean, pre-formatted memory card so that your camera is ready to go. If possible preset your settings, and write a list of photos you’d like to get.
2. Get as much light in as possible,
If you’re anything like my family, it’ll be an early dark start. You’ll need to find as much light as possible, Make sure the Christmas Lights are on, open the curtains, turn on a lamp etc. (only use a flash as a last resort)
3. Think about your settings
Not sure what your camera settings should be. Shutter speed should be at least 1/125. Raise your ISO for the low-light early morning. Check your focus points. 1 subject try a wide aperture f2.8. If you have lots of people in the shot the move your aperture up to f.8 to make sure everyones in focus.
4. Be ready for those morning wow's
Make sure you’re in front of the tree when the kids come down first thing. You’ll get the best reaction photo as they walk in.
5. Continuous Mode
Don’ want to miss that magical expression as they open their presents? Set your camera to continuous/burst mode. You can pick the best photo later, or create a series.
6. Tell a story
Document the whole day, and create a beautiful series. Starting the night before with Santa’s milk and cookies, waking up, discovering all the presents, etc
7. Get creative with your perspectives.
Get down to the ground while they open they presents, shoot from above for the prefect dinner shots and try experimenting with different compositions for details and family photo’s. Get closer and take photos of those all important details, Christmas Decorations, food or snow if your lucky.
8. Put the camera down
While it’s great to have loads of great family photo’s. Sometimes the best memories are from you being with the family. So put the camera down and get stuck in with all the fun.