Sunday, September 20, 2015

How to Take Great Pictures at Disney...

Sharing a great guest post today… great for three reasons…

1. It is about Disney and y'all know I love Disney.
2. Gives some photography tips… an area I always need some help with...
3.  Last but not least, my friend Leah wrote it.  She is a fabulous photographer that specializes in weddings and senior photos.  Plus she is awesome :)

So, without further ado...

I am not a children's photographer at all. I know this because I worked for one for five years. It takes a special person to do that job and it just isn't me. But I went to Disney World with my husband's family, that includes our niece and nephews. Since Disney is just more fun when experienced through the eyes of the kid I put aside my typical avoidance of kid pix and documented with my phone. 
You don't need fancy equipment to end up with fun and memorable shots at a place that awesome. 
I received good feedback from the few photos I posted to Instagram so I decided to write some thoughts on how to get pictures you will love on your trip.

Things to Keep in Mind. 

*Your number one job doesn't have to be to get the shot of your kid in front of the castle. Use the photographers they have stationed around the park to get these moments. Save your phone battery for the in between moments.

*A major part of a professional photographer's job is to know how their photos will be used and shoot with that in mind. The tiny picture of Instagram is not going to show how awesome the Epcot Ball is. Besides everyone already knows it's there, no need to remind them. When in doubt when it comes to Instagram think "Little picture, Little Moment."

So on to how to get better pictures of your kids while at the parks. 

*This is a tad repetitive but show what your kids did, not where they were. Again let the pros take the picture in front of the attractions. I don't know what the six year olds in your life are like but my nephew has never stood still in front of something by his own volition in his life. 
Instead of getting that squinty forced picture, watch them in between rides and characters and see what they do on their own. 
This particular one is my nephew being a kid and letting a fountain shoot him the face. It's more fun that making him pose in front of a sign. 

*Bonus tip: Kids are typically shot from above because that's how we see them. But getting on their level often makes a more interesting angle and a truer representation of them. Take a knee before you snap a photo next time and see what you think. 

*Good light is usually what will make or break a photo. Try taking the most pictures when you have it. Avoid the middle of the day when everyone has to squint and has dark shadows around their eyes. Most of the indoor rides and characters have terrible lighting so take those moments to enjoy where you are and let the Disney Photog take the pictures.
I have found the places with the best lighting were the restaurants. Look around when you sit if everything is bright and illuminated from the windows you will have better pictures.

*Bonus tips: Backlighting makes photos more interesting and dramatic.

*Know that taking a lot pictures doesn't mean you documented the trip well. I have many of pictures of this trip (probably hundreds and many not taking the advice I just gave) but I know most of these will continue to get pushed farther back into the cloud and forgotten.

*Be intentional about the moments you capture then print them as soon as you get home. Put them in phonebooks and 5x7 around the house. If you're really proud of one print it even bigger and hang it on the wall. Photos on walls don't get shoved away in bins in the attic.
*Finally be okay with breaking the rules. Because having terrible selfies in dark ride is just fun :)

Thank you Leah for sharing… I think we will need to go to Disney soon try these tips out ;)


  1. Saving this post for when we head to Disney! Great tips! Just pinned! :-)


    1. Thanks Elizabeth! Can't wait to see the pictures from your trip! :)

  2. These are fantastic tips! Thank you so much for sharing these ideas... I love your idea of getting down on a child's level to get the shot. It's so true and so easy to forget! - Jerusha,

    1. I forget that too. And sometimes even when I think I am doing it, I am not (maybe it is because I am tall;)). I am working on that tip!

  3. Great tips. I love the idea of catching the interactions of the kids with the characters in addition to the posed shots.
    I am co-hosting the #HomeMattersParty linky party this month and would love to have you stop by for a visit. The door is open through Monday night.