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Dear Father-in-Law: At one point during all of our vacations and at every big family event, you ask me the same question, “How come my photos look awful, and yours look so good?”
While there’s never been an easy way to explain it to you at those moments (and I do love seeing you put your eye up to the LCD monitor to compose) I have always felt that your frustrations don’t lie with your camera, nor in any inherent ability of mine; but with just a few simple mechanical, physical, and emotional recalculations, your photos will improve from bad to pretty good in no time at all.
Below is a very understated list of ideas that will help you do what you want to do—take a photo of your gathered family that you will be proud to show to your friends and colleagues.
That’s it. You probably have a good photo now, but if you don’t think you got it the first time, try again quickly. But no more than three times! We start to get fidgety by then.
Oh, and one more thing, and this can apply to all of the photographers out there. Let’s call it:
The real #1): Photograph what you care about!
But you know what? You’ve already got that covered. Your camera only comes out when your daughters, grandkids, family, and friends are gathered; the location doesn’t matter. And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. Actually, it’s always been my favorite thing about you—how pleased, proud and, simply contented you are when we are all together. The camera is not just an extension of your eye, but an extension of your heart. Just infuse that love you feel into the squeeze of the shutter.