You want to know some secrets to snapping some beautiful family photos? Don’t do what Donny Don’t doesn’t do, but do what Donny Don’t does. In other words, the real secrets to success in family photos may be doing exactly what conventional wisdom compels you not to do.
Gazes and Stares
For instance, the mainstream approach to family photos suggests that nothing beautiful can come from all members gazing or staring off into different directions. Don’t you believe it! Nothing is more boring–which is the real antonym of beautiful, not ugly–than a family photo where everybody stares right at the camera in zombie-like conformity. Get every member to gaze into a different direction and you add kinetic energy even to a seated studio portrait.
The Second Shot
Arrange your family for a beautiful photo and snap the shot. The, in the second immediately following the opening and closing of the shutter, just before everyone makes to move out of focus, but after they think the moment is over, snap a second shot. That second shot will be the keeper more than 90% of the time. A combination of a posed portrait and a candid shot is what you’ll get. And it will be beautiful.
Profiles of Courage
The Donny Don’t guide to taking beautiful family photos not only allows for profiles but encourages profiles. That’s because the mainstream view on profiles occupied by the conformists will tell you that snapping a photo of family members in profile will only serve to heighten unflattering physical attributes like large noses, weak chins and prominent foreheads. Heck yes, they will! But keep in mind that large noses, weak chins and prominent foreheads are a genetic. Family photos shot in profile are like a catalog of your family’s hereditary features. What could possibly be more beautiful than that?
Direct sunlight is said to be too harsh to create beautiful family photos. But how you can possibly avoid direct sunlight when so many of the opportunities for a family photo crop up as a result of going on vacation? If you immediately eschew the possibility of a beautiful family photo under vacation conditions involving direct sunlight, you may just find that you are putting the kibosh on your very limited number of possibilities for a family photo of any kind. The real problem here is shadows, which are are allegedly ugly. There’s that word again. Ugly is in the eye of the beholder; boring is the enemy of beautiful and if shadows were boring, there would be no such thing as film noir. Use shadows created by harsh sunlight to your advantage and your family photos will never be boring, which means they can only be beautiful.
One of the worst offenses to beauty in most family photos is the stultifying lack of personality. Why sit or stand there like mannequins? If you really want to find some beauty in your family through photos, then remember that the key to all great drama is is conflict. Stage your family photos as action scenes. Create conflict and drama (or humor!) by posing members to create a single frozen moment in time that allows anyone looking at the photo to create a story that takes place before and after that moment.