The Christmas Card Photo (2011)

Back in 2007, I began a blog-series which details our annual attempts to capture a picture of our children that is decent enough to serve as our Christmas card and/or accompany a Christmas letter. The posts begin with Christmas 1999.

Over the weekend, we made our first attempt for this year’s card. The camera may have changed, but the woman behind the camera has not. Apparently, I can take pictures of nature all day long; however, posing people–my people–is something I do not seem to be able to do very well. I offer proof…

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Hannah, as usual (except for the tongue pictures in 2000), is smiling and ready for the camera. My sons possess an inability to be serious when a camera is pointed in their direction. They are all goofy faces and cheesy grins. After several tries, I took this one:

I like it OK. But there’s too much space around my subjects. Plus, I’m not pleased with the focus. I think I need to research various poses with four kids in them. I want to get closer to them.

After taking several pictures with each child individually (which turned out great!), I attempted one more group shot. The daylight was fading so quickly, though, that I had to increase the ISO and decrease the shutter speed so much that there’s a noticeable blur.


We were all so frustrated with one another by this time that I said, “Just sit on that rock and we’ll see what I can get.” They are laughing because their father is doing something silly behind my back.

We will try again. Next time, I hope to coordinate the clothing a little better. Ben’s favorite color is red. I’m sure he’d prefer to wear it in our Christmas picture, but it sure does look bright in these pictures surrounded by siblings in blue.  Noah started out with a nice bluish buttoned shirt, but took it off because he was too hot (yes, hot…in November).

Anyone care to offer advice or tips?

10 Comments on “The Christmas Card Photo (2011)

  1. Love the pictures! Getting a good picture of all the kiddos at one time is always a challenge! I think sometimes the best ones I have of my kids are the goofy ones – real to life I guess! You have beautiful kids…you must be so proud! You have right to be!
    Happy Thanksgiving from Florida!


  2. That last picture is really beautiful! The blur is only slight, and I don’t think any of your Christmas card recipients would notice. I’ve been learning about sharpening to help little hand-shake blurs like that. You could try that if you haven’t already. Also, I’d just bring down the saturation of the red in Ben’s shirt to tone it down a bit for him. It’s a gorgeous picture of all of them; I’d try to save it. The pose and the leaves and the water are perfect.


    • I haven’t really worked on editing the pictures. I was initially weeding them out based on composition. Thanks for the suggestions and compliments. I’ll work on the last one. I like it, too, but it needs some work. 🙂


  3. I love the last one. I love your kids’ laughter faces. It’s priceless. Hannah is absolutely beautiful. I do think you would have liked the photos better if you had taken them landscape. But you could always crop them. Don’t forget that. And if you are designing your own card, you could even crop those as a square and I think it’ll look great.


    • I did one landscape and cut off Noah’s legs. Thanks for the reminder that I can always crop. I’ll give it a try. I am considering designing my own card. I’m not sure I have time, but I want to try to do it.


      • I did my card! It was fun. I got some really cute digital papers and such from I’m sure I could have gotten a prettier card that was already designed, but at least it said what I wanted it to say, and I gave myself room to write a personal message on each one.


  4. I like the last one too!
    Your kids are getting so big. I remember when you posted about this a couple years ago. 🙂


    • Thanks, Wendy! It’s hard to believe it, but you’ve been reading my blog from the very beginning! I’m thankful for my bloggy-friends.


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