• thatkellychic

How to take better family photos on holidays

Updated: Aug 21, 2019

Learn how to take better photos of your family while on holidays by reading my 10 top tips below.

Creating better family photos on holiday
Use a tripod and a timer setting to get in the photo yourself

When travelling with your family, you want to create lasting memories that you can record in a photo album, or print on a canvas and put on your wall. In this post, I will show you how to take better photos of your family while you're on holidays.


When taking photos of your family on holiday, you want the best images for your walls. Here's how to get them:

1. Make eye contact

If your subject is looking at you, make sure you focus on their eyes. This helps to connect the viewer with the subject and makes for a pleasing image.

2. Background

Make sure the background of your image is free of clutter. If your background is messy, it can take the focus away from the subject. Include some of the surrounding landscape, but try to avoid getting tourists in the background. Also watch for rubbish bins or anything that can detract from the image.

3. Lighting

Use natural lighting if possible. Ensure the subject's face is well lit, making sure there are no shadows covering part of people's faces. If you need to, use some in-fill flash to brighen up the foreground.

4. Action

Try to get a photo of people doing an activity like blowing bubbles, playing a game or splashing around in the ocean. You will be able to capture the laughter and smiles all round.

5. Eating

It's generally not a good idea to get photos of people eating, as it can cause some very unflattering facial expressions. Unless, of course, you want to capture a baby with food all over it's face to bring out at their 21st birthday party. The exception to this rule, is if you're little one is doing something cute involving food like the image below.

6. Perspective

Change your perspective. If you're photographing kids (or pets), get down to their level, or shoot from above, to create some interesting compositions.

7. Use the timer

Use the timer on the camera or a remote control to enable yourself to be in the family holiday photos too. Set the camera on a tripod, set up the shot and set the camera's timer for 10 seconds, which is enough time to allow you to quickly get into place before the shutter goes off.

8. Series

Take a series of shots in burst mode to create a storyboard. Some ideas for this could be if your child is dancing, blowing bubbles or playing a game. You could also take a series over time for each birthday, or each month of a pregnancy.

9. Candid camera

If you like the look of lifestyle photography, over general portrait photography, take photos of your family when they're not looking at you or don't realize that you're there. You can get some great images of people interacting with each other this way.

10. Props

If you're taking photos of a baby, have someone hold a toy just above the camera to get them to look at you. If you have a toy that makes a noise, this will usually also make them laugh. You could also include a toy that your child is interacting with in the photo.

I hope this blog post has helped you to create better family photos of your holiday.

Download the family photography checklist

Download the checklist and take it with you when you go on holiday, so that you can remember the points above. The checklist also has holiday ideas for family photos included on it, just in case you get stuck for locations to travel to with your family.

Download the family photography checklist

If you've tried some of my tips above and have uploaded the images onto Instagram, please feel free to #abackpackandaboy to be featured. If you have any more tips that you think could benefit others, please leave a comment below. Happy snapping!

Read my blog post on top tips for travelling with kids to get more enjoyment out of your family holiday. Please also feel free to sign up to my newsletters to receive more free travel and photography tips.

(Please note that this blog post contains some affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn commission from purchases.)

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