Life Theory Collective

the art of living and storytelling.

10 Tips for Print-worthy Photos

Make, PhotographyAshleigh RaddatzComment

Photography is really important to us at Life Theory Collective. It is a huge part of our daily lives and we spend a lot of time chatting about it because... well if we didn't talk about photography we would only talk about motherhood or eating. Not really but, you get the point! 

Photographs tell stories and makes memories tangible so we can look back at those images years from now and remember how those moments felt. Once in a while we will share some photography tips and tricks on the blog that will hopefully help you with your own photography. This, our dears, is one of those times! (Lucky you!!!)

Whether you are shooting with your cell phone, a point and shoot or a fancy DSLR, there are little things you can do to improve your photos! Things that can take your images from snap shots to beautiful photographs. 

So here are 10 things to take your pics from snappies that you just keep on your phone or computer, to printies that you frame and display in your home. (Snappies? Printies? Yeah, I just made those words up right now... Awesome, right?)


1. Don't just CLICK CLICK CLICK! (Otherwise known as, the spray and pray). Slow down and enjoy the moment. Observe what is going on, be mindful and present. What is it about this moment that you want to remember? Now CLICK!                                                         This doesn't hold true for every situation but is often the case. By all means, if your little 2 year old child prodigy is suddenly busting out acrobatic moves à la cirque du soleil or is giving baby brother kisses for the first time, then you had better shoot off 1001 shots in rapid succession. But most of the time, when kids are playing and do something silly, if they see that it made mom and dad laugh, they will do it again. And you can catch it then on that second round.  


2. Get in close! Capture those details. The hands, the soft baby skin, the eye lashes... All of those little details can really tell a great story. And those little details are so important to remember.

Get Close

3. But don't chop those limbs!  One thing that made a huge difference in my images is simply being mindful of what I had "in frame". It can be difficult with moving kiddos to keep all fingers and toes in the pic but, really slowing down and making sure that I didn't amputate a leg or fingertip really took my pics from snappies to printies.


4. Take a step back! Get the whole scene in there. Sometimes it is important to see the whole picture to really get an idea of what was going on. 

Back Up

5. Remove distractions! There are times when toys strewn about or laundry piled up can add to the story of the image. But, then there are other times when those things take away from the subject and can be really quite distracting. If you can, kick it to the side, shove it in the closet, get in front of it so it isn't in sight. 


6. Light can change the entire mood of a photo! Search out the light, notice where the light is streaming in, where the shadows are (where there are shadows, there's bound to be light), and how the light changes throughout the day. Look for the light reflecting in your subjects eyes, haloing behind them or where you see pockets of light among the shadows. Use the light to your advantage.

Interesting Light

7.Try varying perspective! Get above your subject, below your subject, at eye level, to the side, in front of... You get the point! Just changing up your perspective a bit and can make a picture extraordinary. 


8. Think a bit about composition! The rule-of-thirds, leading lines, diagonals. Photo composition can transform your images! 


9. Keep things real! Don't have your subject stop what they are doing to say "Cheeeeesssse"! Instead, wait for the genuine laugh, tell a joke, capture their true emotion.


10. Capture what it feels like, not what it looks like! For the most emotive images, focus on taking pictures of what the moment feels like. This takes some practice but, if you focus on this as you are taking pictures, your images will become true works of art.   


Do you have any special tips that have helped you improve your photos? Let's hear 'em!

X, Ash