Every year since my son was born, I’ve decided our family needed matching Christmas Jammies, and naturally, this ”tradition” needed to be documented!
I wasn’t a professional photographer when I started this tradition (I was still active duty Army!), so my first few years of it were not amazing photos. But since then, I’ve picked up some helpful tips to make this a fun, and no stress experience!
Here are some of my best tips to make this happen!
First- prop your camera or phone on a tripod or steady surface in the space you want to use (we like to decorate a bedroom with a few Christmas items!)
If you’re using a camera, see if you have an interval/delay timer function. This allows you to take multiple shots over a set amount of time so that you can pose & reset. I like to do a delay of 4secs and at least 10+ shots. If using a phone, set a 10 sec timer, or if you're an Apple user and have a watch, use that as your remote! If your camera has an app or remote, you can do that too, I just personally don’t like having to “hide” that out of my shot, so I just know the first one I take I won’t be in!
To lock focus, have one family member where you’ll be shooting to lock it in, or if you’ve got auto eye focus like I do, that will be good enough to grab it! For phones or cameras without this, you likely will want to use an app or remote to make sure you’re good.
If you’ve got dogs involved, a treat or toy on top or near the camera works wonders to get the animals to look that way!
Put on some Christmas music, make sure there’s something to get kiddos to participate (like allowing jumping on the bed, or Christmas cookies after!), and start having fun!
It usually takes me about 3-5xs of 10 or so shots to get a few good ones! In between shots, I direct my fam bam of what to do (smile at camera, smile at each other, tickle, kisses, etc! I sometimes will count out loud so they know when the next shot will happen (ie, as I’m running over to be in the shot after pressing my shutter, I’m shouting 1..2..3, smile)! The wild cards are always my pups though! Sometimes we get them in the shot like I want and sometimes they aren’t in focus, but that’s ok)!
Be patient and so don’t attempt this if someone isn’t in a festive mood! It definitely is a fun tradition I love to do, especially because I can see how much our family has grown and changed over the years. I even made a reel on Instagram of some behind the scenes of the process that you can check out right HERE!
So—Do you do matching Jammies?
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I'm a wife to a handsome hunk of a Soldier, a momma (to a little boy and fluffy pup), a dreamer, a go-getter, and an Army veteran turned photographer. When I'm not behind the lens, I love eating good food (I'm so spoiled because my husband is an excellent chef!), drinking good wine (and coffee!), and spending time with family and friends. I also love to travel, and my husband and I have a competition to see who can visit the most continents (so far we're tied with four each), but our fave place to vacay as a family is Disney World-- yes, we're those crazy Disney people! I'm a huge talker (and incapable of short stories), and I just adore capturing storytelling images for mommas of their babies for the years to come!