I love the Holiday season and this is a wonderful opportunity to share some of my photography with family and friends. Making your own cards couldn’t be easier with blank InkJet or Laser printer cards, available everywhere.
Creating perfect holiday photo cards should be an enjoyable experience and not an agonizing chore. Choosing a great photo can be easier said than done. if you have an individual in mind. Trying to appeal to the masses can be a little more difficult. I really enjoy receiving “family shots” myself, but when sending cards I prefer to make it a little more personal. I will categorize my friends into eight or more groups and tailor the cards toward those individuals or groups. We have all known people who become anxious in the selection of the “perfect image” and tend to make simple, yet fatal mistakes. For example, your girlfriend will not enjoy your favorite glamour model as much as the guys from work.
What should you do first? Choose the Card or the Photo? The answer to that is to start with whatever works best for you. Capitalize on your own creativity and let your juices flow. Perhaps you already have that perfect photograph in mind and now you want to look for a card that suits it. Perhaps you have already found the perfect Christmas card and you want to take a picture that mimics that style and design.
What ever works best for you, it’s always a good idea to check out the greeting cards readily available to spark ideas. You may also what to consider the size of your card. Some cards are large enough that they offer the choice to include more than one photo.
Ideas to Make Your Photo Cards Stand Out:
Many people traditionally sending out holiday photo cards to their families and friends only want pictures of their children or pets. Others prefer a family portrait. Landscape photographers may wish to use photographs of snow covered scenes. Fine arts photographers sometimes like to use a beautiful black and white as a greeting card.
- Last years Christmas photos are always a good place to start. Scenes of the family around the tree from previous years will definitely convey your message while fitting the theme.
- Carry along Santa hats on vacation and family outings. You might feel self conscious at the time, but a priceless photo in a Santa hat from an exotic location just may work as a Christmas card. You can quickly slip on the Santa hats to take a picture or two.
- It may sound silly, but reindeer “antlers” on children and/or pets work remarkably well.
- Small children or pets, peaking out from large gift boxes are always a cute idea.
- You might catch young children peeking at their gifts or shaking a present, trying to guess what’s inside.
- Red roses and poinsettias are an excellent combination. I do beauty shots every year with artificial flowers available from Michael’s. Its easy, cheap and so very Beautiful!
- The scantly dressed GlamModel will always make a memorable card for your guy friends.
- In California we sometime let our kids build snowmen with sand at the beach. They don’t quite take the same shape, but the thought comes across.
I wish I could find the card right now to scan for this article. Some friends of mine dressed their children in simple costumes., marched them down to there churches nativity scene and photographed them just after sunset. It was one of the most beautiful cards I have ever received. While I would never advocate taking your newborn infant out into subzero weather, a friend skilled in photoshop may be able to place your babe in the manger!
When your stuck on ideas you can always fall back on Norman Rockwell for inspiration. A photo of the family trimming the tree may be cliché, but it is effective. A holiday feast pleasantly arranged on the table is always a worth while shot for any special occasion or holiday.
Photo greeting cards work best when your design is simple and clean. Cluttered or busy photographs tend to confuse your viewer. Make your message short and sweet, especially when using text over your photograph. The inside of the card usually has more then enough room for longer messages and well wishes. Don’t try to over complicate your outside design with to much text that can detract from your photograph.
Regardless of the photograph you select to use for your holiday cards, remember this supposed to be enjoyable. Plan early and have fun. It’s also worth noting personalized greeting cards can always put a smile on that special someones face throughout the year!!
About the Author
I'm a Northern California Professional Photographer, based just outside San Francisco. I specialize in commercial product advertizing and architectural. I have been working with Bay Area modeling agencies for more then 10 years, shooting portfolio development for models and high-end makeup artists. I am highly creative and always unique. I shoot cutting edge projects, both in the studio and on location.
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