Tutorial Tuesdays

HOW TO: Take Great Holiday Candids

A few weeks ago, as a pre-Thanksgiving gift of sorts, we laid out how to snap beautiful portraits of your friends and family during the holidays. Did you have any opportunities to practice your new photog skills, Tappers?

If not, zero worries! We’re back with another quick photo tutorial, and this time we’re all about the candids. A candid photo is, simply, a photo taken when the subjects in it aren’t looking or paying attention to the photographer. It’s a natural state of things – your brother and your mom laughing in a corner of the room, your grandmother carefully plating her legendary pasta dish, your uncle taking a quick nap, a stuffed animal serving as his pillow – lovely little moments that really give you a sense of the time, place, and character when you look back at them. So how do we take candids successfully? By keeping a few quick and easy tips in mind. Read on, Tappers!

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Keep An Eye Out

The most important rule of capturing a great candid? Constantly surveying the scene, folks. There are camera worthy moments happening all the time, whether you’re at a warm family gathering, or exploring the streets of some strange, bustling city. Sometimes it’s great to step back from back from everything and just take a look around – a great photo might very easily present itself to you.

Be Patient, Too

Then again, sometimes a photo might NOT very easily present itself to you – but that’s ok! Being patient is a vital part of candid photos. To get something truly special, you might have to spend a while just observing. This should be very easy (and enjoyable) for someone who loves people watching.

Try To Be A Fly On The Wall

A lot of the time, people freeze up when they see a camera around. Most of us are probably in the same boat! That’s why it’s important to be as nonchalant as possible as you’re moving around a party or gathering. Think of yourself as a stealthy spy in a Scorsese movie or something. (Er, has Scorsese had a spy movie? Probably, right?) What might help here – creepy as it sounds – is to take photos as you’re sort of hiding. Perhaps aim your camera through a doorway, or from behind a table. Or, even if you’re focusing your photo on a specific individual or group, position yourself in a crowded space so you and your camera don’t stick out as much.

 

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Take One Million Photos

We’re not kidding…TAKE ONE MILLION PHOTOS. Ok, we might be kidding a little. But in all seriousness, the more photos you take, the more likely you are to capture that one stunner of a shot. That’s the beauty of shooting digital photos – you can do it at whim, and then go back and delete all of the ones you don’t want later. If you’re shooting on your phone, feel free to experiment shooting in Burst Mode. After all, capturing candids just means capturing life, and life – particularly when people are having fun – moves fast. You want to be there for almost every warm exchange, bright smile, and hearty laugh.

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Do you like taking posed portraits or candids more, Tappers? Are there any tips we missed? Let us know in your comments!

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Carol C

great ideas

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Nancy Alvarez

Great tutorial. I will be applying them at my next party. Thank you very much.

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Briyele

I love candida it catches every one in the moment

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ellen

Having worked as a magazine editor, I know the benefits of having large numbers of photos. It’s the only way you’ll get that perfect shot.

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Tiffany

These are my favorite types of pictures and these are great tips!

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Megan Roth

I like taking candids, portraits looked so planned and faked. Candids tell a story.

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Angela

Better than posing like a fool

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Angela

Better than a fake smile

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Sandy Heine

Any day of the week!

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Mary

Hope information shared. I will definite try all of the ideas given.
Thanks!

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Melissa

Love the fly on the wall idea!

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Peter

Time is of the essence for a great candid photo before the moment is gone forever.

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Aimee

Great ideas with 2 small kids its hard to get a great picture

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Theresa F Vargas

Candids are the best

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tat

Nice job guys

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Sandy Heine

Candid photos. A way of stopping time

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Kay

Cool

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Stacy

Candids

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Sandy

I’ll take pics from now on

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Sarah

Good ideas. Thanks!

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