Find a tip:
Use Photos to Share Memories and Tell Stories this Mother's Day.
Life is all about moments. Every special moment holds a lifetime of memories that
live on after the moment has passed. In our normal daily routine, we tend to miss
the details of any given moment, as our eyes do not focus on the subtleties of the
situation. But capturing that moment in a photograph reveals its emotions; a photograph
is a window to a memory, and has the ability to deeply connect you to the beauty
of life itself. Still photographs freeze time, immortalizing the memory in a photo.
While you will never be able to actually relive that moment, the photo serves as
a placeholder for the emotions and memories to take you back.
This Mother’s Day, use your photos to show your loved ones how much they mean to
you. Here are a few ideas for using photos to share memories and tell stories:
Sit down with your family and look at photos from the past. Relive happy moments
from your past with your family members. Weddings, vacations, birthday parties,
holidays, or other family events captured in a photograph will bring everyone back
to that day, especially when you are looking at the photos with other family members
who were there. Or, show the photos to a child and tell them the story about what
was happening in a particular sequence of photos. Nothing fascinates a child more
than a story about what his or her parents were like before he or she was born.
The bond between family members is unlike any other bond in this world, and nothing
would make your mom happier than to watch her family relive their moments together.
Plan a Mother’s Day outing, and document the event with photos. A fun Mother’s Day
idea is to plan a family outing with your mom and document the experience with photographs.
Every photo tells a story, and when sequentially laid out in an album, scrapbook,
or photo book, the story feels even more complete. Take more pictures than you normally
would, and keep in mind that you will edit the shots later. Utilize both your wide
angle and your zoom lenses to complete your photo essay. Let’s discuss a few of
these ideas in more detail:
Start by taking a wide photo of the surroundings. For your Mother’s Day outing,
you may have chosen somewhere outdoors for a picnic, or her favorite restaurant
for brunch. Wherever you decide to take her, begin by taking a few shots of the
location. If you are outdoors, a nice scenic photo of the grassy picnic area from
a distance would be a beautiful way to set your location.
Take an extensive mix of photos. Throughout the outing, take a lot of photos, and
use a variety of approaches and techniques. Use wide angles to show the people interacting
with each other, as well as tight close-ups to show the emotion on different people’s
faces, especially Mom’s interaction with her children or grandchildren. This is
also a wonderful time to pull your mom aside and take some portraits – after all,
it is her day.
Remember to mix in lots of candid shots with portraits. Both candid shots and portraits
can capture the beauty of a moment, so use both types of shots. Many times it is
much more interesting to remain a fly on the wall and practice your photojournalist
techniques. This will help you capture the real emotion of the day, showing the
outing as it really felt without letting the camera’s presence interfere. Also,
add in a posed photo or two where people look back at the camera. Here’s a great
tip: have your subjects pose for a photo, and once the posed shot is taken, keep
shooting your subjects as they start to interact normally again. The people are
already positioned nicely from the posed shot, and you can capture some real genuine
Remember that less is more. After the outing you may have lots of photos to edit.
Do not feel the need to include all or even most of your shots. Keep in mind that
15 or 20 great shots can speak louder than a photo book with 100 photos that all
start to look the same.
Let your photos tell the story. A great test to see if you have created a compelling
story is to take your final shots and see if they all make sense together without
actually explaining anything. Where was the outing? Who was there, and what was
happening? Your photos should reveal all of this information, and should allow someone
who did not attend to feel like they were there, both physically and emotionally.
Once you narrow down your photos, complete the job. When you have decided which
photos tell the story of the outing in the best sequence, it is time to put them
together for the ultimate Mother’s Day gift. Build a photo book, lay out a beautiful
photo album, or share the album online with your family. Mom will be touched that
you took the time to photograph her day, edit the photos, and gave her a memento
that comes directly from your heart. Flowers, cards, and jewelry are all wonderful
gifts, but photos give her moments and memories that will last forever.
To all the moms out there, Happy Mother’s Day!