We've all been brought up on the dreaded family photo:
Line up. Strike the pose. Nana move in a bit. No wait, duck down Dad you're head will be chopped off. Wait, move the dirty plates. Ok, ready everyone? Scootch together. Right everyone. Cheese!! Snap. And another one. Wait. Dad duck DOWN! Wait. OK. Ready? Cheese!! Snap...
Its tough, no one enjoys it and sure you end up with a memory of an event, but invariably someone has their eyes closed and someone else looks rubbish.
This is the type of photo I rarely take. The word "cheese" makes me cringe. Of course, we need to take group shots, they are great and can be heaps of fun. Its just that sometimes people miss the best opportunities for taking the best shots. Here are some tips:
1. First rule, don't say cheese. That word just makes everyone self conscious. And it doesn't even produce the best smiles. Choose something else. Anything else. And then shoot around people actually saying the word you've chosen.
2. Set your camera to continuous shooting. Most cameras will have this feature, this is when your camera shoots several frames with one press of the button. Then you just hold it down and you get several shots. This way you get the best chance of missing someone blinking and someone else looking "rubbish". If your camera doesn't have this feature just make sure you take a series of quick photos (then choose the best and delete the rest!).
3. Shoot the preparation of the pose. What I mean is that when people are getting ready for a photo it will often be the best photo. Most people are self conscious of having their photo taken but if they think you aren't actually taking it yet you will end up with lovely natural images. Mums straightening their kids hair. Or couples looking at each other lovingly. Try it - you might be surprised by how lovely your group shots can actually be.
At every event we definitely want a record of the whole group. But hopefully you can make it a less cringe-worthy experience and also capture some lovely memories.