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How to Take Better Photos of Your Kids in Halloween Costumes | A Simple Photo Recipe

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How to Take Better Photos of Your Kids in Halloween Costumes | A Simple Photo Recipe

It’s that time of year again, where everything is covered in spiderwebs (real and fake), black and orange are found everywhere, and you can buy pumpkin flavored everything. Halloween is coming, which means it’s also time to start thinking about costumes and trick-or-treating.

How can you not want to take photos of your kids all dressed up in their costumes? They are so cute and it is always fun to see them take on the persona of their outfit. I want to help you take better photos of your kids in Halloween costumes with this easy to follow “photo recipe.”

To start, make sure you’ve read through my 5 Tips for Magical Halloween Photos, as they will help you as you go to take your photos this year.

I say this in my 5 Tips post and I will say it again here, because I think it might be the most important tip:

Take photos of your kids in costume BEFORE Halloween.

Halloween is too busy and everyone is too excited to get out and start filling their bags (or pillow cases) with candy. By doing your photos before (or shortly after) Halloween, everyone can be more relaxed.

Canon Mark IV, Lens - 135mm f/2L. Settings: ISO 100, Aperture f/2, Shutter Speed: 1/2,500

Canon Mark IV, Lens - 135mm f/2L. Settings: ISO 100, Aperture f/2, Shutter Speed: 1/2,500

Before you pick up your camera set plan ahead. Look at your weather app, find a day with good weather (or at least without rain), and a day when you do not have a ton of other activities planned. Once you’ve figured out a date, start talking it up with your kids. Tell them you want to do a fun adventure in costumes before Halloween. I will even tell my kids they get to practice trick-or-treating with me, so they know a treat may be involved.

Pick Your Location: Now that you have a date and the kids excited, you’ll want to find the perfect location. This could be as simple as your front porch for tradition, or you can step it up by finding an area with beautiful fall color, or that goes along with your kids’ costumes. (Have an Eeyore or Winnie the Pooh? What if you found a spot in a wooded forest? Or went to the beach to give the photos of your Luke Skywalker a more Tatooine feel.) How much you want to go with the theme of your family’s costumes is up to you. I often just love to find a big pile of leaves and use that to show off the season that way.

Now that you’re ready, let’s set up your camera!

Canon Mark IV, Lens - 135mm f/2L. Settings: ISO 100, Aperture f/2, Shutter Speed: 1/2,500

Canon Mark IV, Lens - 135mm f/2L. Settings: ISO 100, Aperture f/2, Shutter Speed: 1/2,500

HOW TO TAKE BETTER HALLOWEEN PHOTOS PHOTO RECIPE:

DSLR Camera Settings: Set your camera to Aperture Priority Mode (turn the dial to “A” or “Av”). This allows you to select a wide open aperture which puts your child as center focus, blurring out that background beautifully. Select an aperture of 3.2 or lower (or as low as your lens will allow you to go). Your camera will select your other settings for you in Aperture Priority mode.

Make sure your flash is turned off. I also suggest turning on continuous shooting mode on your camera to allow you to take several bursts of photos at once to capture those quick movements of your little characters.

Phone Camera Settings: If you’re using your smartphone, put it in Portrait Mode, again to help your subject be the main focus of your image.

Compose Your Photo: The orientation of the photo is completely up to you. For group photos, I prefer to shoot horizontally to allow enough room to show off everyone. Framing the shot horizontal can also help show off your environment (which you spent time pre-picking out!).

Canon Mark IV, Lens - 135mm f/2L. Settings: ISO 100, Aperture f/2, Shutter Speed: 1/2,500

Canon Mark IV, Lens - 135mm f/2L. Settings: ISO 100, Aperture f/2, Shutter Speed: 1/2,500

Capture Your Character: With everything set, now you get to press that shutter! I would take a few photos from far enough away to see the entire costumes, along with a little closer up show their expressions too. As you move closer and further away use prompts to keep the kids interested. Have them shout “trick-or-treat!”

I also like to get them into character. For my family of cops and robbers, I had the big kids act like police officers, blowing their whistles and the robbers trying to run away. This is the perfect time to let them be silly, and just play. I’m sure you’ll find these more playful shots as your favorites.

Canon Mark IV, Lens - 135mm f/2L. Settings: ISO 100, Aperture f/2.5, Shutter Speed: 1/1,600

Canon Mark IV, Lens - 135mm f/2L. Settings: ISO 100, Aperture f/2.5, Shutter Speed: 1/1,600

Bonus - Get in the Frame: Does your entire family dress up? Enlist a grandparent or your husband and jump in the shot with the kids while you’re dressed up. Since you have already set up the camera for them, it is easy for anyone to snap a photo for you. Trust me, you’ll appreciate proof that you were there (and dressed up) too!

SHARE YOUR PHOTOS!: If you try out this photo recipe, I want to see! As you show off your kids in their Halloween costumes, tag #nlptipsshot so I can see and share what you’ve captured!

Canon Mark IV, Lens - 135mm f/2L. Settings: ISO 100, Aperture f/2.8, Shutter Speed: 1/1,600

Canon Mark IV, Lens - 135mm f/2L. Settings: ISO 100, Aperture f/2.8, Shutter Speed: 1/1,600

Safety Note: Please note, while these photos were taken in the road, it was a quiet country road with adult assistance watching for traffic. My kids’ safety was of utmost importance.

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Month 2 - February 365 Photographs

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Month 2 - February 365 Photographs

I am two months in and I have a set of February 365 Photographs. There are ten months left in the year (please don't go so quickly 2016), but I am loving those moments captured this past month. I even had an extra day to capture one of my favorite photos of the month. This month I photographed several sibling shots that I feel captures the essence of their friendships right now. What is even more special, is that they love when I show them that they are in the photo for the day.

February 365 Photographs, Lifestyle Photography, Photograph Everyday Moments, Sweet Sibling PhotosI made sure that I got in the frame once this month two. Hudson's nursing days are coming to an end so I wanted to photograph this special time before it was over. Our puppy decided he needed to come visit too. February 365 Photographs, Lifestyle Photography, Photograph Everyday Moments, Mother with baby and puppyI photographed first steps. ...February 365 Photographs, Lifestyle Photography, Photograph Everyday Moments, First Steps Picturepink sunrises, played with shadows, and bright sun. There were, of course, days were inspiration lacked and I was happy just to get a photo done. But I still captured this month with my kids.February 365 Photographs, Lifestyle Photography, Photograph Everyday Moments, Sweet Sibling PhotosHere is a snapshot of my February 365 photographs. I am proud to say, I already have a few of these hanging on my walls for the kids to see.February 365 Photographs, Lifestyle Photography, Photograph Everyday Moments, Sweet Sibling Photos

Stay tuned, I have so much blogging to catch up on...some sweet families, special sessions, and more. And in case you missed it, January 365 Photographs is here. Follow along daily on Instagram.

*Neyssa*

 

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Month 1 - January 365 Photographs

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Month 1 - January 365 Photographs

I am through Month 1, with a complete set of January 365 Photographs. A few weeks ago, I had shared why I started a 365 project. The beginning of this year I would have never guessed the amount of growth and even more, joy, I would gain from doing a 365 project. There are still 11 more months, so I have a ways to go before completing it. I have no way of knowing what the rest of this year will bring, but I do know that I have taken some photos of my children I will forever cherish that I might not have had I not been participating in this project. Sure I've taken a few that aren't great and were just to get a photo in for the day.  But I've captured current favorite photos of my kids.Like this one of Sawyer. The sun had come out while taking the dog outside and I happen to bring my camera. I took this photo of Sawyer in our driveway. January 365 Photographs, Personal Photography Project, Or when I took my camera to Mighty O Donuts when we made a stop on the way home from picking up the newest member of our clan, Anakin.January 365 Photographs, Personal Photography Project, Who knew I the sun would pop out while the kids enjoyed playing in the sandbox in January! January 365 Photographs, Personal Photography Project, Another favorite from this month. She loves to jump on the mini trampoline. January 365 Photographs, Personal Photography Project, This is an image I would have never thought to take had I not been doing this project. Because this project makes me think about what I want to capture each day, I was reminded at bed time one night how Milo stays up reading his Lego "Constructions" each night by flashlight. This image is not only a favorite of mine, but Milo loves it too. January 365 Photographs, Personal Photography Project, Or what about when I took my camera to Mod Pizza. I must have looked crazy with three kids and a "big camera" but this is the story of a trip to our favorite dinner trip. January 365 Photographs, Personal Photography Project, I could continue with more favorites from this month, but instead here's a snapshot of the January 365 Photographs. Thank you to Tricia Ebarvia for sharing your templates for easily sharing 365 by month!January 365 Photographs, Personal Photography Project,

 

I'm sharing each day on Instagram. Follow along here!

*Neyssa*

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365 Project | Personal Photography Project for Growth

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365 Project | Personal Photography Project for Growth

In the photography world, the 365 Project is a "popular" personal project many photographers take on for both the challenge and growth that can come from such a big project. The idea of a 365 Project has always seemed a little overwhelming to me. In fact, I never thought it was something that I would take on. I had many excuses like, I'm too busy, I have small kids, but the real reason was that I feared failing. How is that for honesty?! The perfectionist in me feared missing a day, or having an image that is less then perfect due to lack of creativity that day. Last year, however, I watched a friend and fellow photographer give glimpses of her 365 project. Her images of her children were real and beautiful, and I was inspired. I decided that it didn't matter if I missed a day here and there, or if an image wasn't perfect. It wasn't about what I would miss but what I would gain - images of my children regularly and the growth in my photography that only shooting daily could give me. And so, January 1st, 2016 I began my own 365 Project! If you'd like to follow along regularly, I will be sharing daily on Instagram. Otherwise, my hope is to share once a month here on the blog! Here are just a few from this month so far.

365 Project, Beautiful Photo of children playing, 365 Project, Border Collie Photo 365 Project, take photos every day

*Neyssa*

P.S. Valentine's Day Minis are SOLD OUT! Thank you to everyone for your support in helping me raise money to support baby Oliver. January family sessions are fully booked, however I still have availability for a few sessions in February and March. This year I will only be taking 6 sessions per month. Click here to chat with me about your family session.

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