Christmas window Macy's

6 Holiday Photo Ideas

Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful. – Norman Vincent Peale

Winter holidays are almost here and probably taking pictures is not the first thing that comes to mind. It’s a wonderful time of the year but it can also be very tiring. If you have any time left for yourself after all the shopping, cooking and cleaning, why not grab the camera and snap a few shots. Here are some holiday photo ideas to get you started.

1. Store windows

Stores are so creative this time of the year. Not only with their promotions and pricing strategies, but also with decorating their windows. Macy’s stores are well known for their holiday windows. I took the cover photo of this post in New York City at their flagship store. Very challenging since you can only imagine the crowds competing to get a few shots, but well worth the wait. Even if you don’t have a Macy’s around you, when you go shopping keep an eye out for attractive window decorations and take a few photos.

2. Facades

Stores decorated for Christmas

As you walk the streets, how can you not notice the beautifully decorated buildings, lights and ornaments. I know you may not have a camera with you since all your hands are carrying bags with presents. Use your camera phone or you can even come back later. Just give yourself a project: grab the camera and go shooting, not shopping. Make sure to also capture people. You definitely want to feel the holiday atmosphere and spirit.

3. Ornaments

Christmas Light and Ornament

Of course you may take pictures of your Christmas tree if you have one. But why not zoom in and take close-ups of ornaments like in the photo above.

4. Bokeh of lights

Poinsettia in Front of Christmas Tree

When you think Christmas, you think lights. They are fun to capture, especially if they are colored. You can include an object in the foreground, like I did with the poinsettia in the photo above, to make things more interesting. I love the bokeh of my Canon EF 50mm as you can read in a previous blog and I definitely took advantage of it.

Who said that lights have to be in focus? Take a look at the photo below. Totally out of focus but abstract and interesting. I used manual focus of course, and I experimented with soft focus until I ended up with cool shots.

Light circles bokeh

5. Gingerbread houses

Gingerbread house

I am not totally sure about the origin of gingerbread houses but I know they are part of the Christmas tradition. They can be creative and definitely worth capturing.

6. Miniature Christmas villages

Christmas Village Mini

As a child I was fascinated by miniature winter scenes. Some of them can be inspired and creative. Get very close to create a life-like perspective and take a few photos. No fancy camera needed. In fact, I took this photo with my iPhone.

I hope these ideas will motivate you to take some festive shots this holiday season. Don’t keep them to yourself. Share them with Photobalcony.

For more photography tips and ideas, check out my latest photography book, Picture (Im)perfect Photographynow available at Amazon.


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