Tips on Taking the Perfect Holiday Photo

CLIVE, Iowa – The U.S. Postal Service estimates 16 billion holiday pieces of mail will be sent this year, including holiday cards.

University Photo Owner Sheri Bever said people who plan on taking a family photo for their holiday card on their own need to know some tips.

“Especially when you are outdoors, keeping the sunlight to your back. Try and keep away from taking photos in direct sunlight, because that is going to make people squint,” Bever said.

Bever said direct sunlight will also give harsher shadows, so be aware of lighting.

If people want to shoot their family photo inside, Bever said to have either your cell phone or personal camera on a tripod. The tripod will keep the camera steady and level.

Bever recommends keeping a flash on for indoor pictures.

“You can utilize light coming in from the window, but you still have to be aware of what you are doing,” Bever said.

Bever said if someone has the option between a personal camera or cell phone, they should use the personal camera.

“Your DSLR is going to give you a better image than what most cell phones do. There are some exceptions out there, and just like with anything it’s the eye of the operator. There are some cell phones out there that have amazing capacity and capabilities you just have to know how to operate them,” Bever said.

Many families like to have matching outfits. Bever suggests to keep the clothing simple. “You want the faces to be the first thing that you see in the image instead of the clothing. You can have different colored clothing as long as it all blends together.”

University Photo will print holiday cards for you. You can go to their website, upload the photo you’d like to use and send it off to be printed. It takes two to three days to complete an order.

The U.S Postal Service said it estimates 386 million holiday pieces of mail will be sent to Iowa after Thanksgiving through the New Year. Of that, 184 million will go directly to the Des Moines area.