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Christmas Dinner Photos – Must Have Shots & How to Get Them

written by: Larry M. Lynch•edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 11/19/2009

The opportunity for Christmas dinner photos comes but once per year. Be ready this Christmas using these ideas and techniques to get better, more dramatic, salalble digital images.

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    Christmas Dinner Photos

    Christmas comes but once a year so it’s a one-time only opportunity to capture those key images and special moments for posterity. During this time of the year especially, there are those "must have" shots you simply can’t miss, so here are some photo shooting tips to help get you through the Christmas holiday season with a portfolio full of Christmas dinner photos you’ll be proud to show off and share. Whether the Christmas dinner photo spread is based on turkey, ham, a succulent roast or another meat or poultry center piece, these are images you’ll value and use for a long time to come. The Christmas dinner full table spread, both with and without the family, are a must on your Christmas pictures for the holiday shooting list. Then get closer for individual images of each of the Christmas dinner offerings.

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    Christmas Holiday Party Drinks

    There are a number of special Christmas holiday party drinks that turn up regularly at this particular time of the year. From rum punches, hot toddies and apple ciders to egg nogs there’s plenty to toast and photograph. Consider taking a series of sequence photos of exactly how Christmas holiday party drinks are prepared. How about serving up drinks in a decorative glass, goblet, decanter or pitcher and then shooting an enticing photo of the beverages.

    Photo Shooting Tips: Select a decorative glass, goblet or other container. Pour the beverage in until about three-quarters full. Arrange leaves, flowers, or other decorative elements around the base of the container. If the background is "busy" use your widest aperture setting (f2.8, f3.5, etc.) and focus on the front of the container. A fast shutter speed (1/250th, 1/500th, 1/100th second) will ensure proper exposure with or without flash. Alternatively, use a cloth or cardboard behind the container to simplify the backdrop when shooting.

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    Christmas Holiday Fruitcake and Desserts

    What’s the Christmas holiday season without a fruitcake surrounded or accompanied by a slew of scrumptious goodies? Have you prepared yourself and your digital photography equipment to snag some distinctive Christmas holiday images? Make an arrangement of assorted goodies on a Christmas holiday decorated platter, then get in close for macro and close up photography. You want to make your viewers mouths water for a taste of these special treats. Shoot dessert images low and close using a wide lens aperture for minimal depth-of-field to keep your viewers’ attention of the subject. You want your digital image viewers to practically feel the icing oozing from beneath layers of soft, mouth-watering, fluffy goodness. Can’t you just smell the aroma of warm cinnamon rising in steaming waves from hot, spicy breads? A decorative knife slowly slices its way through thick, rich mounds of succulent fruitcake as candied fruits, plump raisins and crunchy nuts tumble onto the platter. Be sure to use "triangles" in your image compositions and don’t forget the "rule of thirds" either.

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    Christmas Pictures for the Holiday

    Christmas dinner photos are a must for your holiday digital photography repertoire. Your Christmas pictures for the holidays should cover a broad range of scenarios, events and people including photos of Christmas dinner. From overhead views of the Christmas dinner table shot while standing on a study table, chair or step ladder to extreme close ups of ingredients and foods or drinks which are a part of the complete Christmas dinner, you should strive to exercise your photographic vision, imagination and creativity. Remember to drop into the kitchen where preparations occur, stop by the market as ingredients and raw foods are purchased, organized and assembled. Creatively document the steps in all the phases of Christmas dinner before, after and during the meal. While you’re at it, save me a drumstick – or at least a really good, juicy shot of one.