How to Photograph Your Holiday Meal | Free Photo Idea List

My husband and I are blessed to be surrounded by a large family and to have a home designed for entertaining large parties.  When the holidays come, my house is always full of people! Since I’m often busy in the kitchen, I make a few notes of the types of photos I want to capture.


What recipes did you choose?  What does the dining table look like?   How messy is the kitchen the day or morning before the festivities?

Think about how you prepare for your holiday meal.  Include shopping, baking, cleaning or anything related to serving your guests.  In 2012, I photographed the pizza boxes from our Christmas Eve meal.  I was too tired to cook anything else!



Don’t forget to take a few photos while others are filling their plates!  While documenting the new foods, remember to photograph the timeless family favorites.  Don’t worry to much about presentation—if you celebrate with a bucket of fried chicken, take a picture of that bucket!



Celebrating the holiday season with friends and family is central to the holiday meal.  If your guests gather around one table, use your widest angle lens to get everyone in the picture.  Do you spread out around the family room on TV trays instead?  Get that memory documented, too.



Each year I try to showcase a different family holiday treasure. Some years it is quite elegant, such as my mother-in-laws china.   Other years it is simple, such as the homemade turkey napkin rings a friend gave me.  Last year, I chose to highlight the turkey platter my husband’s grandmother painted in 1987.

November 21, 2012


Step outside the kitchen to see how guests are spending their time.  Are they watching football?  Are they playing board games?  Are they snoozing after a yummy meal?


 No matter your scenario,  keep your camera close and take photos of things that are meaningful to you!  To make your holiday photos a little easier I’ve created a quick list for you. Grab it right here.

CY365 Holiday Meal Photo Ideas

To learn specific techniques for painlessly, quickly, and beautifully photographing your holidays,  enroll in CaptureYour365’s 7 lesson course, Your Holidays, Captured Through the Lens with Katrina Kennedy. Class starts December 2nd. Register before November 22nd to save $6.00 on registration.


Kelly Buss -CaptureYour365


Kelly Buss is the Creative Manager at CaptureYour365, a community for inspiration, ideas, and classes for your everyday photography. She’s mom to 5 boys and avid photographer of her family’s daily life. Get free daily photo tips delivered to your inbox.


November 15, 2013
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