Essential Photo-Taking Tips for Scrapbookers

Essential Photo-Taking Tips for Scrapbookers

Click to play this podcast on your computer.

Download CK Podcast in iTunes


Welcome to the Creating Keepsakes magazine podcast! We bring you cool ideas & easy solutions for scrapbooking your memories.

I'm Lori Anderson, online managing editor for Creating Keepsakes scrapbook magazine. Today we're going to talk about essential photo-taking tips forscrapbooking.

But first, this podcast is sponsored by Tamron, maker of the award-winning 18-270mm VC All-In-One Zoom lens. It's the world's only digital-SLR lens with a 15X optical-zoom lens that features image-stabilization technology. You'll never have to change lenses again to get closer to your subject. See all of the Tamron lenses at

And now, Essential Photo-Taking Tips for Scrapbooking.

Getting the perfect shot is so rewarding-it's such a joy to look through your photos and see those fun or special memories captured on film, then scrapbook those moments to share with loved ones. But, so often, that perfect shot escapes us, and it's not always easy to understand why.  While we can't guarantee you'll get that picture-perfect finish every time, we can certainly help you increase the odds of taking photos you love with these 7 easy tips.

1. Carry a camera as often as possible. While SLRs are great cameras, they can be bulky and sometimes awkward to carry around. Point-and-shoots and camera phones are small and easy to pop in your purse or pocket. Having one of these options with you will increase your chances of capturing photos others will miss. As Photographer Chase Jarvis says, "The best camera is the one that's with you."

2. Take lots and lots of photos. Professional hockey player, Wayne Gretsky, said, "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take." While he may have been talking hockey, the same is certainly true for photography. Keep in mind that:

  • Digital photos are virtually free to take and today's large-capacity memory cards enable you to take and store hundreds of images. So go crazy and take 50 pictures of your daughter reading to the dog.
  • You can easily delete the not-so-perfect-shots later, and your chances of getting a couple of photos you love are greatly increased as your camera clicking increases.
  • Once you identify the photos you love, be sure to print out your favorites. Don't leave them as .jpgs to get lost in the memory card mix. Rescuing them is easy with the many online and local printing providers out there. So make hard copies of your favorite images to scrapbook and share with friends and family.

3. Try different angles. While you're taking lots and lots of photos, examine the subject of your picture from several different angles. Look down, look up, and walk around the star of your shot. You'll see it from different angles and possibly find a favorite photo in the making. Be very active in your photo taking. Again, the more photos you take, the better your chances of getting a couple of photos you love. These different angles add interest to your scrapbooking layouts and help you tell the complete story.

4. Be aware of distractions. While you're looking at your camera's LCD screen or through the viewfinder, pay attention to what's actually in the frame. Are there trees or lampposts right behind someone's head? Are your subject's arms or legs being cut out of the shot? Sometimes even the slightest camera movement will make the biggest difference. And remember, you can always zoom out to take the picture and crop-in later when you're editing your photos.

5. Learn the settings on your camera: Auto, sports, night, party, portrait, macro, etc. Practice taking photos with each setting and then look at the images you get with each one. And, even though it may not seem like the most entertaining material, read your camera manual. Then, go back and read it again after a few months of shooting. You'll learn more about your camera's capabilities and get helpful tips for using your specific model.

6. Pass the camera. If you're in a group setting or attending an event, pass the camera. Your number one goal here is to get pictures of yourself. Why? Well, you are a major part of the memories you make, so it doesn't make any sense for you to be excluded, even if you're not crazy about seeing yourself in photos. And, as a bonus, you'll get photos taken from someone else's perspective, which is fun and interesting. (Be sure to encourage them to take lots and lots of photos, too!)

7. Photo editing is your friend. Okay, so you've tried these things and you find you still didn't get the perfect shot. Don't worry; you may be able to transform a ho-hum image into a photo you love with a little photo-editing fix up. Adjust the lighting, zoom in on a portion of the photo, crop out unwanted elements, play with the color saturation, tweak the photo angle, or remove blemishes-any of these simple tricks can make all the difference. Check out software programs such as Photoshop Elements or ACDSee Photo Editor or online services such as Picasa to help you tweak photos.

You're in luck! We may have reached our seven essential tips, but we have an extra bonus tip. And this one is the most important of all: have fun with it! Photography is something to be enjoyed, and the photos that result will be treasured for years to come. Now, get out there and take some photos!

That's all for today. Visit us online at for more scrapbooking tips & solutions or to subscribe to our magazine. And be sure to visit our sponsor site,, for more photo-taking tips and award-winning camera lenses to make your scrapbooks shine.

If you have a question or a topic you'd like us to cover on the Creating Keepsakes podcast, email us at

And remember: when you scrapbook, you're not only sharing your story, you're creating keepsakes.


Subscribe to CK Podcasts in iTunes

Post a comment
To comment on this article you must be logged in. Not a member?


iTunes subscription
Just wanted to let you know that iTunes says your RSS feed is broken. The last two episodes are not available through iTunes.
© F+W All rights reserved.