On Hari Raya Aidilfitri, everyone looks forward to documenting happy memories! You’ve got the family portraits, the gorgeous make-up selfies and even OOTDs ringing in the festive season.
To help you capture the best yet, we’ve rounded up these 10 tips and tricks. So get your cameras ready – you’ll want to try these out in advance! 😉
1. Shoot flattering family portraits in burst mode
The first on the list of mandatory Raya shots is often the family portrait! When your relatives are all gathered in the living room, we know it’s challenging to organise everyone for a perfectly clear shot. In such situations, you’ll want to use your camera’s burst mode. This way, you have plenty of options to choose from, among which there’s something worthy enough for the ‘Gram.
ILCE-7RM3, FE 24-70mm F4 ZA OSS, Continuous Shooting up to 10 FPS
It’s really easy with Sony’s full-frame mirrorless cameras! With its high-speed continuous shooting of up to 10 frames per second (and continuous Autofocus tracking!), you’re sure to be spoilt for choice!
2. Pair your mobile phone to your camera with an app so you’re in group pictures too!
Being the photographer for the day doesn’t mean you have to be behind the camera all the time! Be part of your family portraits by downloading a mobile app that connects your smartphone to your camera. Through these apps, your phone acts as a remote control, shutter and viewfinder all in one – enabling you to take a picture even when you’re away from the camera.
ILCE-6500, Sony E PZ 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 OSS, 1/160sec., F4.5, ISO320
If you have a Sony camera, download the PlayMemories mobile app to use these convenient functions. Gone are the days of running to join your family while the timer makes its countdown!
#HHWT Tip: The PlayMemories Mobile app is also useful if you’d like to make quick transfers of photos from your camera and into your phone. Your loved ones will be happy to know they’ll receive the pictures almost immediately after they’re taken!
3. Take breath-taking OOTDs by focusing on the eye
Moving on to a different kind of picture, we all want an OOTD shot for the one day we’re our best-looking selves! The perfect OOTD has to be crystal clear, especially if you’re looking into the camera and giving your million-dollar smile. So relay this tip to your personal photographer: they should focus on your eyes!
ILCE-7RM3, FE 28-70mm F3.5-5.6 OSS, 1/1000 sec., F4.5, ISO400
Feel free to strike your poses because the Sony’s Eye Auto-focus technology ensures that the Autofocus point is locked onto your eyes, so that the picture of you remains sharp regardless of how much movement you make. Who knows – the candid moments between each pose might even turn out to be THE shot of your choice!
4. Turn towards the light for a flawless selfie
Once you’ve got your outfit of the day down, next on the list is likely your selfies with your family members! When it comes to selfies, lighting is crucial and your best bet for that will always be the natural sunlight.
DSC-RX100M5, 1/100sec., F2, ISO640
When indoors, the ideal selfie is taken in front of a window, with your camera in between. This ensures the light shines directly on your face instead of from your back. It’s even simpler if your camera has a 180-degree tiltable LCD screen (yet compact enough for your purse!) like Sony’s RX100M5, enabling you to take a selfie as easily as you would on your smartphone – except with higher resolution, natural bokeh and much better low-light performance!
ILCE-7RM2, FE 55mm F1.8 ZA, 1/250 sec., F9, ISO160
If you’re outdoors, the prime time for a selfie is during the golden hour, which typically occurs between 6.30 to 7pm in Singapore! To be extra sure, find out the golden hours of the day here. There’s nothing like the good old sunset glow to let your facial highlights sparkle!
5. Bring your tripod along for unique night shots of sparklers!
As most families would know, the sunset doesn’t signal the end of visits. As day turns to night, kids (or those young at heart!) beam in anticipation because it’s time to whip out… the sparklers! Now here’s a photo opportunity you won’t want to miss.
ILCE-7M2, 1/500sec., F1.4, ISO1000, 50mm
Credit: Carlos Dominguez on Unsplash
You’re going to want to bring your tripod for this. In order to capture artsy shots of the sparklers, you’ll have to use a slow shutter speed ranging between 1 to 8 seconds. For that reason, a tripod is essential to avoid blurring and distorting your subjects!
ILCE-7M2, 2s, F2.0, ISO50, 50mm
Credit: Chinh Le Duc on Unsplash
#HHWT Tip: Remember to switch off your image stabiliser for optimal results!
If you want your subjects in focus while they wave the sparklers around, you’ll have to ask them to remain still, else risk being distorted. With all these conditions fulfilled, you can surely anticipate some picture-perfect memories of a fun-filled Raya visit with your loved ones!
6. Capture the beauty of the night as it is
Similarly, in other lowlight settings, try to make use of ambient lighting instead of flash. You can opt for a high ISO setting to combat the lack of light! Sony’s cameras have stellar ISO performance so you won’t have to worry about grainy pictures when using high ISO.
ILCE-6500, E 16-70mm F4 ZA OSS, 1/10sec., F4, ISO400
Credit: @cookiesnqream on Instagram
When photographing your loved ones at night, your f-stop (aperture) shouldn’t be too low to keep them in focus! If your camera has a full-frame sensor, remember to set your shutter speed to a fraction of your focal length to avoid motion blur. For example, if the focal length is 30mm, your shutter speed should be 1/30 of a second. Once you’ve got all these settings down, feel free to snap away!
7. Capture traditions in the most heartfelt situations with silent shutter
As with all festivities, there are traditions to follow. In situations like these, it’s best to remain subtle and sensitive with the way you photograph these moments.
ILCE-7RM3, FE 24-70 F2.8 GM (SEL2470GM), 1/60sec, F2.8, ISO1600
This is where the silent shutter on Sony’s full frame mirrorless cameras play an important role! Be it to document the process of spirituality or to capture fleeting moments of bliss, this function helps prevent your subjects from noticing and breaking out of their natural selves. At the end of the day, you’ll be able to look back at all these candid moments and reminisce on the long, fulfilling day of reconnecting with all your loved ones!
ILCE-7RM3, FE 28-70mm F3.5-5.6 OSS, 1/125 sec., F7.1, ISO250
It’s also useful if you’d like to take pictures of your adorable sleeping baby relatives without waking them up!
8. Eat the traditional way (on the floor) for the best flatlays of your Raya spread!
Now on to a different type of shot! Our loved ones aren’t the only possible subjects for some fun Raya photos! With all the colourful dishes and tasty kuih served, a flatlay of your Raya feast will make a great addition to your social media feed and one for the memories.
The easiest method to take a flatlay is to have your food on the floor, preferably where the background’s more neutral so that it doesn’t clash with all the colours of your typical spices.
ILCE-7RM2, FE 55mm F1.8 ZA, 1/160sec., F5.6, ISO400
However, if you’re shooting the flatlay on the table, make use of your camera’s tiltable LCD screen so you won’t have to strain your neck too much to get the perfect angle. The Sony’s full-frame mirrorless cameras’ LCD screen tilts upward approximately 107 degrees and downward approximately 41 degrees to accommodate wide-ranging shooting angles.
ILCE-6500, E PZ 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 OSS, 1/80sec., F4.5, ISO100
Composition also plays a huge part in making your food look good in pictures. Did you know that the human eye reads images from the left to right? For this reason, the ‘heavier’ objects such as your bigger dishes should be arranged on the right! Of course, there are exceptions to this rule – you can simply let your creativity flow and capture what you deem most aesthetically pleasing.
9. The rule of thirds always comes in handy with single subjects in frame!
When picturing a single subject in frame, you can never go wrong with the rule of thirds! For the uninitiated, the rule of thirds entails dividing your frame into 3 parts horizontally and vertically. The points of intersection are prime spots to place your main subject as the human eye typically directs its gaze towards these spots.
ILCE-7SM2, FE 55mm F1.8 ZA, 1/50sec., F5, ISO500
An easy way of marking out the intersections is to switch on the gridlines on your display screen! Once done, align your subject to any of the lines for cinematic composition, which will come out splendidly on Sony’s cameras. Keep this in mind for model-like OOTD shots, candid pictures and more!
10. Spend some time video-recording memorable moments and you might just find something worth capturing as a photo
Fancy a creative audio-visual way of documenting your Raya memories? What some families usually do on their annual gathering is to record a mass ‘Selamat Hari Raya!’ greeting, and every year they’ll add on a new one to the compilation! It’s undoubtedly nostalgic to look back on and your relatives won’t want to miss out on this unique activity.
Otherwise, recording videos during Raya is a great way to capture precious moments you might have missed! Why not give it a try this coming Aidifiltri? Depending on your shooting style, Sony offers a range of cameras which record 4K movies with cinematic qualities, a potential worth tapping into when you’re documenting your Raya atmosphere. With the 4K high resolution, you can create sharp and focused stills from your video by simply using the Photo Capture function!
BONUS: Opt for an action cam to bring along when you ‘balik kampung’
If you’re visiting family members abroad and would like to rough it out during the trip, we highly suggest bringing an action camera, such as Sony’s FDR-X3000R! Its new image stabilisation technology ensures your recording remains smooth.
Best part is, it’s wide-angled so you can fit in even extended members of the family without worrying about any distortion. You can also mount the camera on yourself to record memorable experiences from your point-of-view!
With an in-built highlight movie maker, the camera automatically picks out key scenes you’ve recorded to create a short clip, which you can share with your friends and family in an instant! After all, since you’re overseas, it’s the perfect opportunity to vlog and show your friends what it’s like to ‘balik kampung’ for Raya.
With these 10 tips, you’re sure to impress your family and friends with photos of all the quality time you’ve had during Raya! Not only will you up your Instagram game, you’ll immortalise fleeting moments into picture-perfect pieces worth keeping.
Here’s wishing you the best of what’s remaining of Ramadan, and do show us your pictures if you’ll be using these tips!
This article was brought to you by Sony.