Three Photos You Need To Take On Christmas Morning (includes FREE BONUS download for you)


It’s 5 am on Christmas Day, the kids are awake and screaming that “Santa has come!”. Time to make some strong coffee and grab your phone or camera.

So how do you separate the beauty and charm of Christmas from the chaos of the festivities? Here are a few tips for Three Photos You Need To Take On Christmas Morning.

Also - don’t miss your FREE printable: Dear Santa Letter (great for all kids to leave out for Santa) at the end of this post (no emails or details needed.)

Christmas Day Photo #1: Gift Opening

The opening of gifts is like no other in that it is filled with an array of emotions, facial expressions and excitement. My first tip is FILL THE FRAME (i.e: Zoom in). Many people forget to look at the what they are actually photographing and only notice afterwards that there was an ugly torn box or paper beside their child.

Instead, Zoom in so that you're cropping out all the distractions to the right, left and directly in front.. Are they sitting in front of a beautiful Christmas tree? Great - then zoom out and take a wide photo of the whole scene. Oh and don’t forget to shoot the reactions of those who GIVE the gift as well, they can be just a great.


TIP: Pay attention to the lighting

Early morning gift opening frenzies are going to be challenging to capture because the light just isn't that good. If you can calm your kids down (on Christmas morning, easier said than done.)

  1. Try to position them next to a well-lit Christmas tree or near a window if the sun is up.

  2. Turn on a few extra lights in the house if you have to (although overhead lights can put an ugly yellow cast over everything and create unflattering shadows.)

  3. You can even use strands of loose holiday lights to help illuminate your subject.

  4. Just remember that it's far better to rely on ambient light than your flash, which will wash out faces, kill holiday lights and create black shadows behind everything in its path.

  5. Check your white balance. Christmas lights, especially the non-LED variety, are often tungsten-balanced, so when indoors, set your camera's white balance accordingly and you will avoid final photos that look too orange. Just make sure you remember to switch back when shooting outdoors.


Christmas Day Photo #2: Set The Scene

Remember you want to take photos that tell a story, so that when you look back on them later you will relive that memory.

Take photos of your surroundings like Christmas breakfast or the way the table has been set for lunch. Take some fun photos of the kids…them jumping on the bed in their pyjamas. Or take a photo of Nanna relaxing with a glass of wine.

Do you have a certain family tradition that you would love to capture? Take photos of that to share with your kids in later years. Christmas day goes by so fast, so take some photos of the moments that mean something to YOU. Don’t worry if all your photos are not perfectly in focus, instead concentrate on the feeling and mood instead and just shoot away!


Christmas Day Photo #3: Don’t forget to get into the photos yourself.

If you can’t arrange a large family photo maybe try to get a selfie instead Here is one of me with my husband and son last Christmas. So many phone allow you to take a photo by just saying “smile” or “cheese” or by using the timer. Give it a go and get into the photos!


Thanks for reading about Three Photos You Need To Take On Christmas Morning. I’m excited for you to try these ideas, because every button push will be a lifelong treasure in the making. While this is on your mind, you might consider whether it’d also be a treasure to be IN the photo with your family.  There’s something special I offer that I want you to know about:

Perfect Christmas gifts for friends or family or even yourself!
$200 Gift Cert. – includes a 60 minute photo session plus an 8x12” Matted Photo (valued at $135) – perfect for someone who would love a family session, but who might not have space for a large piece right now or you aren’t sure what they’d want – they’ll receive a complimentary photo to enjoy anytime. Then they can choose to purchase more afterwards if they want.

Get in touch with me via my contact page or email me at I am happy to give you any advice you need about taking photos over Christmas or if you want to purchase a gift certificate for someone.

Are you ready for your FREE PRINTABLE? This Dear Santa letter can be written by your child and left out for Santa to read on Christmas Eve. Happy Christmas from me to you :-)


Tara WardComment