Meagan Musing: Improving Your Indoor Photos

Meagan Musing


Improving Your Indoor Photos

I really love taking pictures of my kids. In fact, the only reason I became interested in photography was because I wanted to have nice photos of Andrew to document these busy, wonderful years.

With a new baby I'm taking most of my photos indoors these days which can be a little tricky, but there are some ways to make it a bit easier.

The most important thing I've learned about photography is to find the light. It doesn't matter if you're using the best dSLR camera on the market, an iPhone or a little point and shoot, finding the right light will make all the difference in your photos.

Photography is all about light, and if your camera is shining a bright, blaring light on your subject your photo is going to look flat and stark. So I would first say - turn off your flash.

Say you're inside your house and you want to take pictures of your adorable kids, but you don't want to use your camera's flash. What should you do? Find a window.


{Window is camera left, with the light falling directly on her face.}

Natural light is very flattering and can give you soft, pretty photos, IF, there is enough of it. That's the hard part.

Look around your house and find your biggest window. Open your blinds. Pull your drapes as far off the window as you can and face your kiddos toward it. This will allow for the most light on their faces and in their eyes.

BUT, you need it to be even, dispersed light. You want to avoid "hot spots" - where the light falls in uneven patches and shapes.


{Window is camera right. The left side of his face is brighter than his right.}


{She's at a 90 degree angle to the window which is camera right. See how the right side of her face is shadowed a bit?}

Watch how the light falls in multiple rooms in your house. It will be different throughout the day. My south facing window in the den is great for late-afternoon or mid-morning shots, but the light is too bright and uneven right at noon.

If the light is soft enough, having them face the window directly leads to pretty, well-lit eyes.


{Window directly behind the camera, late afternoon on an overcast day.}


{Window behind and below the camera (because of the camera angle), mid-day on an overcast day.}

(This is my new favorite Caroline picture. She's so adorable though I have a new favorite almost daily. Ha!)

and then, she {snapped}

If you still can't get enough light in your house try lamps. You can take the shade off a lamp and it'll provide quite a bit of ambient light. It won't be as dimensional as natural light, but it's better than your on-board flash. This is a good tip for nighttime photos, too.

(Though as a general rule you're going to have a hard time getting great pictures at night without a tripod. If you want cute nighttime pictures of your kids in their pajamas you're going to have to use your flash - or accept dark-ish photos, which can be nice and moody.)

(And if you're using a dSLR you can add an external flash which can be bounced and redirected so it's not shining directly on your subject. But that's a whole different ballgame.)

So, practice practice!

And come back and let me know if this helped, or if it just left you more confused with more questions.

Darcy at Life with My 3 Boybarians is in the middle of 31 Days of Photo Tips and recently posted some great pointers for indoor photos. Be sure to checks these out, too!



Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home