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Tip Tuesday

Sometimes on Tuesdays, I'll post a tip to Threads and my Instagram stories (@jenniferhymanphotography). I know not everyone uses social media though and I like the idea of gathering all of my tips into one central location. So, here they are! I'll update this page from time to time. If you want my latest suggestions, check out my Instagram highlight called "Tips"!


Photo by Jess Bailey on Unsplash


Phone Pic Tips


  • Pay attention to environmental elements that look like they're sticking out of your subject's head. I'm talking tree trunks, branches, streetlights, telephone poles, etc.. It's an easy fix - just move your phone over a smidge!


  • If you're taking a photo in a public space, take a quick moment to notice if a faraway, random stranger is peeking out from behind your subject. Oftentimes, you can reframe your photo, so they hide completely behind your subject and is therefore no longer a distraction. 🙂


  • If you notice a removable distraction in your photo, take the second to move it out of the frame. You might regret it if you don't! 👉


  • If you want to avoid distracting clutter in the frame (e.g. toys on the floor), angle your phone up, so you can't see it in the picture. 🙂


  • Pay attention to vertical lines in the scene and adjust your phone’s angle/tilt until they are straight (e.g. trees, walls, windows, light posts). This helps your photos look a little more polished. 👌🏻


  • The more people there are in the photo, the more likely someone will blink or look off. Therefore, take at least 3 or more photos of each setup/scene, so that you can choose the best one to keep. 🙂


  • When possible, try not to digitally zoom in with your fingers on the screen. Zoom in with your FEET by walking closer to your subject. This keeps your image file resolution and quality as high as possible! 🙂


  • To avoid blurry selfies, use your phone's 3-second timer. 🙂


  • If you want your picture taken a certain way, show your friend/family exactly what you're envisioning by taking the photo first of them in the desired spot/composition. 🙂


  • Play with negative space. Fit your subject in the bottom 1/3rd or 1/2 of the screen, and let the rest of the picture be "empty" with just sky, tall trees, wall, etc.. It'll give variety and a sense of scale to your photos. 🙂


  • Light is extra important for indoor photography! Have your subject face the window (either fully or at an angle) to get that pretty, natural light on them! Compare that to when they face away.


  • When photographing your children playing, interacting or doing a fun activity, be patient and wait for the natural smiles and laughs to happen. 🙂


  • When taking videos for keeps (and not just for IG), go horizontal. That way, it’ll look better on your computer or TV years later when you want to reminisce.


Memory Saving Tips


  • Next time you're at the library, stack the books that your child is about to check out with the spines facing out. The stack can be in their hands (small stacks), or on top of a bookshelf or table (big stacks). Take a picture! 🙂


  • If yo're a reader, sign up for a free Goodreads account to keep track of the books you've read. The truth is, no one else is going to keep track of it for you, but it's nice to have it for reference. 🙂


  • Take annual photos of your kid's bedroom to keep track of how it changes throughout the years. 💗


  • Write down the cute way they mispronounce a word or name. One day, they'll say it perfectly and you'll want the memory of how they said it before. (You can also record it in a video!)


  • When you're going to a child's performance, Broadway show, or even a wedding, include the program, playbill, or invitation in one of your selfies for context!


  • A fun thing to document is the repetitive things you and each member of your family says. It’s remarkable because everyone in your family will recognize it when they hear it! Also, with kids, it can help define their current age or stage of development. :)


  • Try taking some audio-only recordings of your baby or kid. There’s just something pure, simple and special about listening back and focusing on one part of a memory when there are no other distractions. Example ideas: your baby saying “mama”, their laughing, your partner and your child interacting for a couple of minutes.


  • If there’s something that you want to remember forever, document it. Write it down. Take a picture or video if you can. Don’t just depend on your memory. You might remember it clearly now, but the details or the exact wording of what they said will slip away. Don’t procrastinate. Don’t leave the memory of it to chance. 💖


  • Take the time to create hand and footprint impressions of your newborn or baby. Years later, the size and shape of the 3D imprints will be so precious to you. 💖


  • Add a little note to favorite pictures and videos in your photo app. It'll make searching it up later SO much easier. You can do this after just taking the photo or when you search up an old memory.


Photoshoot Planning Tips


  • Make sure everyone in your family tries on any new outfit pieces well ahead of time to make sure they fit well. That way, you'll still have time to exchange for a different size or find a whole new piece altogether. 💁🏻‍♀️


  • If you're stuck on choosing colors (or additional colors), remember that neutrals (e.g. brown, grey, cream, sand, ivory) always photograph well!


  • When choosing colors and patterns for your family's outfits, consider how it will look next to each other in the various photo combinations. For example, if Mom's dress is blue and white in a flower pattern, how will it look in photos of her next to her daughter/other daughter/son/partner/her mom?


  • Avoid headbands on little ones that don't know how to adjust or push them back up properly. Try a small bow or different hairstyle instead. :)


  • Bring snacks for your child, so they don't get hangry. 😝 We can always take little breaks for them to refuel, and even take Mommy or couple photos while they snack!


  • As it gets colder, remember that cold kids are not happy kids. 😕 Please bring cardigans or cute jackets for them, just in case! Layers also work!


  • Halloween gets busy fast and sunset is early (~5:46 pm). Purposely build time into the evening's schedule to take photos of your excited kiddos in their costumes!


  • If it's an in home photoshoot, feel free to play some music that will help you feel more relaxed and comfortable! 🎶

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