More Christmas Card Photo Ideas

We’ve chosen some of our favorite new Christmas cards to illustrate how clothing choices and the use of photo filters in your Christmas card photos can dramatically change the way your cards look. (Of course, starting with one of our awesome Christmas card designs doesn’t hurt!)

If you already have your card picked out, be sure to show it to your photographer because, aside from letting him or her know the style of photo you like, it can inspire location, posing, propping or lighting ideas. Knowing whether you may want to try black and white or a photo filter is important, too. Here are some Christmas card photo ideas from our new collection we wanted to share.

Make your colors count
Merry Merry Picture Frame Christmas Cards
Twinkle Lights Photo Book -- Christmas Cards
The red sweater, green pants and scarf on the little boy in our Merry Merry Picture Frame Christmas Cards absolutely make the photo, especially with the white snow, dog, and relatively colorless background to make the colors really pop. Similarly, the bright colors of the shirts on the kids in our Twinkle Lights Photo Book Christmas Cards match the card’s bright color palette. If you want a bright card, wearing bright clothes is one way to achieve that!

Let your card wear the colors
Joy Full Christmas Cards Sparkly Wishes Christmas CardsTall Tale Photo Christmas Cards Vintage Treescape Circle Photo Christmas Cards
Another way to emphasize bright colors is use black and white photos, and frame them in a colorful card to let the holiday message stand out. To make sure your photo looks great in black and white, wear darker colors than your skin tone so faces are highlighted. And if you are starting with a color photo and adding a black and white filter, try adding the contrast & sharpen filters or the vibrance filter to intensify the lights and darks in the photo. Four examples shown, clockwise from top left: Joy Full, Sparkly Wishes, Vintage Treescape Circle and Tall Tale Christmas Cards.

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Photography Tips – Kids Valentine’s Day Photo Shoot

I love sending Valentine’s Day cards. And I love taking photos. So, we decided to have an office Valentine’s Day photo shoot with our own kids. Fun day in the office, right? Then, we decided it’d be fun to make a video to share the results with you—not just our cute Valentine’s Day photos, but also a few photography tips on achieving some of those big smiles we all love. For added fun, we threw in some behind-the-scenes video footage because, as a photographer, I always wonder what the real ‘set’ looks like! So check out the video and the tips below to make your Valentine’s Day cards sparkle. 🙂

Now here are some photography tips and ideas to help you achieve the actual photos you saw in the video.

Valentine's Day Photo IdeasFor our main background, we painted a 4×4 section of plywood with chalkboard paint. Chalkboard paint wasn’t entirely necessary since we didn’t write on it, we just liked the black background against our garland. And speaking of the garland, you can get it as a free printable! It’s easy to cut out and a fun activity to do with your kids.

Photography Tip: Try placing something on your head and asking the child to blow it off. Just about anything works. I used a paper heart. It should either be something the child will physically be able to blow off, or that with a slight tilt of your head, they’ll think they did! Also setting the child on a box or a crate typically keeps them in one spot, long enough at least for a few quick photos!

Valentine's Day Photo IdeasFor this background, we used two sets of gold metallic curtains, right on top of each other. Inexpensive, and they come in many colors!

Photography Tip: Giving kids a prop like sunglasses allows them to interact and play with something, which keeps them occupied long enough for photos. And even the motions of taking off the glasses can be really cute!

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Merry Christmas from Pear Tree Greetings!

Pear Tree Greetings wants to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas. Here’s how a few of the Pear Tree team members shared their merry wishes this year!
Merry Christmas from PearTreeGreetings.com
From all of us here at Pear Tree, we hope you enjoy your time with your family and friends over the holiday season. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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Christmas Card Shopping Myth #2: Perfect Family Required

If you’re like me, you’ve skipped sending Christmas cards more than once because you didn’t have a decent family photo to use. But these days, there are plenty of photo ideas for Christmas cards that work just as well, if not better than, the family portrait. Many cards now have room for several photos, which takes the pressure off finding one perfect photo and gives you an opportunity to get creative.

  • You can pick one great photo of each member of your family, close-up or candid. Some cards even have space to write about each photo, so you can say a little about what each person has been up to.Photo Christmas Cards -- Stocking Stuffers
  • You can show a series of photos from the a vacation to highlight some of your family adventures, or from a wedding or graduation where you all were gathered.
    Photo Christmas Cards -- Travels and Memories
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Featured Favorite

Real cards created by real people like you!

Blissful Bells Booklet - Christmas Cards

Here’s one way to inject a little fun into your family Christmas card ideas: get some great action shots of the kids next time you’re on vacation. This family’s photos and the playful design of the Blissful Bells Booklet Christmas card work together to make their Christmas cards a big hit.

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Using photo filters to enhance your photos

Using photo filters to enhance your photosThese days you don’t have to be a professional photographer to follow the latest photo trends. We all now have the ability to create special effects and filter colors and light with a simple click in our photo editing software—no messing with lenses, filters or film.

These three very different looking photo Christmas cards were created using Pear Tree Greetings’ easy-to-use Personalization tool. After choosing a card and uploading our color photo, we clicked on the photo filter tab and tried two different filters on it, saving each card to see which one we liked best. The first is the original photo; the second was made using the black & white, plus contrast filters; and the third using our vibrance filter.

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Top 10 Family Photo Tips

Family PhotoGetting ready to take the annual family photo for your Christmas cards, New Year’s cards or Thanksgiving cards? We see a lot of family photos, and wonder how our customers manage to take such great ones. To make your photo session easier, we’ve compiled our top 10 family photo tips, especially for those who have lots of family members to organize or little kids to corral.

10. Choose your time carefully
Make sure the kids are fed and rested. We all know what happens when we skip nap time, and even adults get cranky when they’re hungry.

9. Bring toys or treats
Don’t be caught empty handed. You’ll need to take quick action if you have to turn that frown upside down or want to reward good behavior.

8. Set a rain date
If you’re shooting outside, or are hiring a professional photographer, be sure to set a rain date in case someone gets sick or the weather isn’t perfect.

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Family Christmas Photo Ideas – What to Wear for the Family Photo

It’s time to start collecting family Christmas photo ideas if you haven’t already taken that perfect photo. For us, one of the most important (and difficult!) decisions when planning your family photo is deciding what to wear. But it’s worth the effort. Coming up with some sort of theme, even a simple color palette, can turn an ordinary family photo into a portrait worth hanging on your wall—not to mention a beautiful Christmas card!

If you’re having your photos taken by a professional photographer, be sure to ask them for clothing ideas that will work best in the location you’ve chosen. He or she is certain to have a few ideas. To give you some examples, we’ve gathered a few family Christmas photo ideas that we love, focusing on the clothing choices and how they affect the photo.

Light colors
When the whole family is wearing light colors, it focuses attention on the darker colors in the photo, such as facial features, hair color, or the beautiful scenery in the background. We like a mix of light colors, which looks more natural than everyone wearing the same color.
Light Colors
Light colors
Top photo by: Christy Bode Photography
Left photo by: Ashlee Raubach; Right photo by: Ashlee Raubach

Dark colors
The dark colors this family is wearing make them stand out against the lighter sky and field. The dark blue color solidly grounds them and gives them the appearance of a tight unit, which is a nice subliminal message for a family photo.
Dark colors
Photo by: NikkiJamesPhotography.com

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Featured Favorite

Real cards created by real people like you!

Bubbling with JoyThe Lont Family is way ahead of the game. Their Christmas cards are already printed and ready to address, and it’s only October 1st! Says Amber, chief card picker-outer, “I really love all the Pear Tree Greetings’ Christmas card ideas – there are SO many wonderful options to choose from!”

Amber says she chose the Bubbling with Joy Christmas cards “because of the fun layout and graphics and the ability to change the artwork colors to coordinate with the photos. We recently had a fun family photo shoot in downtown Seattle and we knew right away we wanted to display a lot of those photos in our Christmas card.” We love the photos, too, Amber. Very colorful! Continue reading

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Modern Christmas cards with vintage-look photos

Holiday photo card ideasLately we’ve seen a lot of unique photo Christmas cards that make use of an age-old technique: the use of antique props or weathered backgrounds to bring a nostalgic, vintage feel to a modern photo.

-A rusty metal sign in the background that makes the subject of the photo (you) look stunningly beautiful in comparison

-An antique picture frame that appears to corral an active modern-day family for a portrait frozen in time

-A vintage, grocery-store scale that proudly displays the birth weight of the new baby sleeping peacefully on top

It’s the juxtaposition of the old and the new, or the ugly and the beautiful that makes the photo interesting and draws your attention to the faces within. So how can you use these vintage photo ideas to make your holiday cards stand out?

If you’re hiring a professional photographer, tell him or her about any vintage photo ideas you have in mind. They most likely have a selection of props and backdrops in their studio that can lend a vintage feel to your portrait. If you’re shooting on location, most photographers have plenty of pre-scouted locations they’ve used, and by letting them know you’re interested in a vintage feel, you’ll be helping them narrow down the options.

If you’re taking the photo yourself, start by looking around your own house. Do you have an antique piece of furniture, picture frame, mirror, or old toy that would make a nice prop? Is there a wall or corner in your house with interesting woodwork? Outside, is there a weathered fence, or exterior wall with peeling paint or wood siding, perhaps? Remember, you don’t need to show all of it, just enough to give a vintage flavor.

If you can’t find anything at home, expand your options. Explore industrial areas, looking for old signage, corrugated metal, stone and brick walls. Explore rural areas for bridges, barns, fences, warehouses, and train or gas stations. Perhaps grandma and grandpa have an old toy or bike of yours, stored in their attic? If your prop has sentimental value, all the better.

Good luck on your hunt. We can’t wait to see the beautiful holiday photo cards our creative customers come up with this holiday season! And if you’re still undecided, read more family photo ideas on our blog.

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