I have a super fun and special episode for you today! Amy Tripple of ShootAlong joins me on the show to talk about how ShootAlong came about and share five tips for catching those candid images.
I love the ShootAlong message of connection and creativity. I’m feeling inspired to pick up my DSLR and get shooting! Feeling inspired, too? Join the short course and get 10% off with the code SARAH10.
Here are ShootAlong’s tips and tricks for keeping it candid:
Keep it Candid: Five Tips for Shooting Fun, Real, and Authentic Photos
Surrender your ideas of perfection
First of all, release yourself from the expectation that you are going to take “perfect” pictures. This notion can paralyze even the most knowledgeable photographers, so make it easy on yourself and let go of perfection right from the start. Is your kid wearing a dirty t-shirt? Is his hair still messy from the afternoon nap? Are toys scattered around your living room? Great! These are the details that make your images real. In 20 years, when you look back on your images, these small details will stir strong memories. Holding too tightly to perfection also ruins the moment you are attempting to capture. You may lose the special scene you are capturing if you pause to ask your child to change clothes, brush his hair or pick up her toys in the living room.
Keep the camera on the kitchen counter
Your camera is less likely to be used when it is packed away neatly in a camera case, so place it within easy reach on your kitchen counter instead. Once you’ve freed it from the shackles of being in it’s case, set a goal for using it — try taking at least 5 pictures of your family every day for one week when you are in or around your kitchen. These pictures should simply capture your everyday life. Once you have met the goal of taking 5 pictures a day for one week, try setting a similar goal to take 5 pictures every day in another room, in a space outside your house, or try putting your camera in your purse or backpack and taking 5 pictures each day of your family’s activities “on the go”.
Look for engagement
Photos which show a person fully engaged in an activity are often the most compelling. They immediately draw the viewer into the scene. The subject of the photo does not have to be active or moving to be interesting. For example, a child reading or building with bricks will beautifully illustrate the quieter side of her personality. Candids are also a great way to show the connections between people. Emotions and expressions are poignant when they are depicted in this honest fashion. Seek out natural bonds between siblings, parents and kids, friends and pets. Do not ask your subjects to look at the camera.
Shoot “through” a scene
We all have a tendency to look at the back of the camera to check our pictures as we shoot. When shooting candids, after you do an initial check to make sure your pictures are not too light or to dark, try not to check it again. In other words, do not put your camera down after getting one or two images to dwell on your accomplishment. Keep going and watch the scene unfold through the viewfinder, capturing more authentic expressions as they happen.
Use light to tell your story
When you’re taking pictures, be sure to keep an eye on what kind of light you’re working with. Open shade is ideal because it evenly lights your subject and prevents squinting. When you’re inside, be aware of where the light is coming from and try to capture your subject from a direction where catchlights (the bright reflection of light in each eye) are present. Also, get to know your house and keep in mind which areas are best for photographs throughout the day!
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