Photo Tips

Photograph Christmas Lights: Simple Photo Tutorials

Me Ra Koh

These simple photo tutorials to photograph Christmas lights will give you the chance to step away from the holiday stress and feed your creative spirit.  But that’s not even the best part.  The best part is you’re capturing a precious moment of childhood that you will treasure forever. In years to come, you’ll look back on these photos and wonder where the years have gone.  I do all the time.  I’m SO glad I have my camera to help me freeze time.  A child in front of the Christmas tree lights is one of the most magical photos to take.  I’m excited to help you capture it this year with a handful of my favorite Christmas tree light photos.

Start with Your Camera in Manual Mode.

Above every photo are the camera settings used for that image.  Below each photo are fun notes and photo tips.  Try adjusting your camera settings to the ones I’ve given you, and see what you get.

ISO 1600, Aperture: f/2.5, Shutter Speed: 1/50th of a sec

Found these Simple Tutorials on how to photograph Christmas Lights, on

Couple notes: Lisa Walker, an avid blog reader from California, submitted this photo for my latest book Your Family in Pictures.  Isn’t it marvelous!  I love how this photo speaks of the magic and wonder of the Christmas season. She turned off all the lights in the room so the Christmas tree lights were her only light source.  The shutter speed is also slow (1/50th of a sec).  When shooting something below 1/60th of a sec. you want to encourage your subjects to hold still.  Otherwise, you may get motion blur.  If your little ones are to young to hold still, raise your ISO higher so you can also have a faster shutter speed like 1/125th sec.  A faster shutter speed will help you freeze the moment without getting motion blur.

For the full photo recipe on how Lisa was able to photograph Christmas lights here, plus a bunch of other fun annual holiday photo recipes, check out my third book in the best selling series, Your Family in Pictures.   (Always a favorite Lisa!  So honored to have you in my book forever!)