Fun Photography Projects for the Holidays

The holidays mean getting together with family and friends and a lot of bored kids separated from their usual pastimes and video games and interacting with relatives they may not know well. You can help by suggesting some fun photography projects to not only make the visit more enjoyable for the kids, but perhaps capture some memories for a lifetime.

Light Painting

For this you’ll need a camera with a “B” or Blub setting that you can lock open the shutter, a tripod, a remote release, an external flash (it’s optional if you don’t already own one) and an assortment of glow sticks, flash lights and lanterns.

Since it gets dark early, this is a great winter holiday after dinner project. As soon as it gets dark, set up the camera on tripod and open up the shutter while the kids run around and paint in the air with different types of lights.

After a couple minutes fire the flash to include the artists in the picture. Let them see the results and figure out what to do to make the pictures better. Resist the urge to direct, just work the camera and flash for them. It’s the kid’s project, let them do what they think is cool. You’ll be amazed how creative they can be.

Bug’s Eye View

If you’re getting a new camera for Christmas, bring your old camera along and ask the kids to each take five pictures of how they think bugs see the world. The five picture limit keeps any one of them from monopolizing the camera.

That gives them a chance to run around in the woods and take pictures from odd angles.

If you don’t have a kid camera and don’t want to risk yours, you can buy disposable film cameras at the store for less than $10. While you may lose the instant gratification, you won’t lose any sleep if one of the cameras gets lost.

Family Tree

If you have a big family and a digital camera the kids can use, have them go around and take pictures of everyone and print them out. Then have the kids take the pictures and paste them on a piece of construction paper to make a family tree.

If you have photos of relative’s not in attendance, print them out so they can fill in the gaps in the tree. Have everyone able to make it sign their names under their pictures. You’ll be surprised at what a delight finding that in an attic box will be years in the future.