*say that three times real fast*
Okay. I’m going to do something very brave here. I’m going to show you some really scary pictures that I took back in 2006. Please, don’t run. Please don’t scream in terror. You may want to cover your eyes. And perhaps your mouth. Here it goes:
I warned you, but noooo, you had to look. Well, at least the kids are cute.
The tradition of pumpkin patch pictures is definitely something most parents try to tackle this time of year (which reminds me, we need to do ours), but as evidenced by the images above, pumpkin patches aren’t the easiest location in the world in which to take photographs. Most of you photography buffs probably already know these things, but in case you don’t, I’d like to offer a few tips that I’ve discovered over the years to make your pumpkin patch pics pretty:
1. Look at that harsh sun in pic #2! If at all possible, try to go to a shaded pumpkin patch (and I mean shaded under a tent or roof of some kind…not tree shade…that can create yucky hot spots in your images). If the timing is right, you can rush out on a cloudy day for the same shaded effect. But, if you’re in Texas like me, we mostly have full sun, so I like to wait until a few minutes before sunrise or an hour or so before sunset to take advantage of that beautiful soft light. The added benefit is that at those times, you will probably have the place to yourself.
2. “Oompa Loompa.” Here’s the other challenge in dealing with pumpkin patches: everything tends to have a lovely orange glow. If your kids aren’t dressed as characters from the well-known book about a little boy and a chocolate factory, then it’s not really a good look (see the very first image above). You can help avoid the orange color cast by positioning your subjects so that 1) the light source is behind them and 2) their heads are slightly tilted up toward you and away from the pumpkins.
3. Vary your angles. Snap a few pics from way above, directly in front, and even below shooting up. Zoom in close to just give the hint of the patch or get a real wide angle to convey the scope of the patch if it’s a large one. Use a telephoto lens and turn those pumpkins into great bokeh (or boo-keh!). This is especially helpful in creating depth in an otherwise sparse pumpkin patch.
4. And finally, if you can’t find a good time to go to the pumpkin patch or if there isn’t a nice one near you, just bring the pumpkins to you. You can do a lot with just a few store bought pumpkins:
Or, my personal favorite:
Enjoy and happy snapping!!