Author Topic: Do you DIY family photos?  (Read 2907 times)

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Do you DIY family photos?
« on: November 23, 2015, 10:53:22 PM »
We haven't had family portraits done in 3 years (when LB was a baby) and would like to get it done this year (waaaay behind the 8-ball, obviously, if we want to use them for Christmas...)

Anyway, have people had success DIY'ing? Mr. FP and I would ideally like to be in the picture, too! Neither of us particularly good at photography--is it worth getting a tripod or should we just get them done professionally?

okits

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Re: Do you DIY family photos?
« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2015, 11:10:54 PM »
Well, how good do they have to be?

I have a few friends who are competent with a camera, so whenever our family is at an event with them I ask them to take a family shot (which ends up on the annual Christmas card, quite often.) My camera is nothing special but good lighting and the right moment (everyone looking at camera and smiling) produces some nice photos.  And we end up with a variety of backgrounds over the course of the year.

Valetta

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Re: Do you DIY family photos?
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2015, 06:11:06 AM »
We diy them but my husband is a hobby photographer. So it's not going to be a comparable situation.

What I would recommend is doing what other people do with him - favor trade. He'll do photos for someone's event or wedding or whatever, and they will repay him with some comparable favor down the road. It seems to work pretty well. You could probably post something like this on craigslist and find someone that way if you don't know anyone.

The alternative is asking someone you know to do photos in place of a gift. Sometimes he will do photos as a wedding gift to the couple (at their request). Do you have a sibling that can take photos well? Do that instead of them getting you a holiday present, birthday present, etc.

So find a friend that takes photos well and do one of the above.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: Do you DIY family photos?
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2015, 06:24:01 AM »
We pay a friend who's a hobby photographer and bad with money $50 for as much as our daughter has patience for. Much cheaper than a pro, much better than the ones we take, and he gets compensated. Also, he gives us the JPGs and NEFFs.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: Do you DIY family photos?
« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2015, 07:36:06 AM »
I don't know any hobby photographers, more's the pity. And I'm not really comfortable offering barter to a stranger (plus, we're not particularly handy, so all I can offer is, like, baked goods).

We went to a mall studio last time and weren't that impressed with the results. I want either free OR better--guess I just have to decide which one!

Ceridwen

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Re: Do you DIY family photos?
« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2015, 07:59:30 AM »
We took our own pictures of the kids for our Christmas card, and it turned out great.  A little filter goes a long way! We would not have been able to do the whole family though.  I think nice family pictures is worth splurging on every few years.

Yankuba

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Re: Do you DIY family photos?
« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2015, 08:07:35 AM »
You can check out Craig's List for young photographers looking to build their portfolios. They will frequently shoot for the right to use your photos or gas money.

I only put my kids on the holiday cards so we DIY

ketchup

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Re: Do you DIY family photos?
« Reply #7 on: November 24, 2015, 09:21:38 AM »
If you have an interest in photography, buy a decent camera, learn all about it, read about composition, lighting, etc, don't go nuts buying gear, and you've got yourself some decent photos and a new hobby.

Or as has been said, find a "young and hungry" photographer.  The market is flooded with hopefuls and wannabees, so prices are *very* low for beginner photographers.  And some of those beginners are great. 

My girlfriend was one of those photographers before she got experienced, found her niche, and got serious about her business (and quit her day job).  I remember the days of the two of us driving 40 miles each way for her to shoot for an hour (with me playing assistant), her coming home and editing for two hours, all for her to get paid $60-100 a week later (before PayPal fees).  And she was good.  Really good.  I'm sure there are some horrible photographers out there, but plenty of the cheap beginners or students on Craigslist are great.

Pigeon

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Re: Do you DIY family photos?
« Reply #8 on: November 24, 2015, 10:56:16 AM »
We have had really good luck with JCP Portrait Studio.  We've had them done a couple times, and I've got a friend who has done the same.  There is often a Groupon or some other type of promotion that will let you get 3 digital images and one sheet for around $25, sometimes a few dollars either way.  You can then get the images printed anywhere.

Scandium

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Re: Do you DIY family photos?
« Reply #9 on: November 24, 2015, 11:13:00 AM »
Yes, DIY. But I'm also somewhat serious about hobby photography.

Bought used DSLR, decent flash, homemade diffuser sheet thing, and a remote trigger or timer. Also buy lenses used.

Still way more expensive than the amateurs at the mall though, but it's more fun and will look better:) Sidenote: our daycare had a "pro photographer" and we paid $15 for one photo. It was so bad I would have been embarrassed to hand that to someone for free! Maybe I should offer to do it next time for $14..

Tjat

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Re: Do you DIY family photos?
« Reply #10 on: November 24, 2015, 02:59:38 PM »
Yes. I asked my wife what we were planning. Once we have the tree up, the two of us and the baby will set the camera up on some chairs with the 30 sec timer and have at it. Shutterfly or some other site will have the cards to us in a few days. I was pleasantly surprised that was our strategy.

IMO, spending say $100 to get a professional glamour shot and then slapping on some cardstock to send to my family and friends seems unnecessary. It will be in everyone's trash by mid-January.