Lana Lee Photography: Blog en-us LanaLeePhotography (Lana Lee Photography) Mon, 15 Jan 2024 23:37:00 GMT Mon, 15 Jan 2024 23:37:00 GMT Lana Lee Photography: Blog 120 113 Surviving a Family Photoshoot How to make your next family photo session a stress free one.

Family photos are truly timeless and such a great keepsake for future generations.  Getting the family together to take those perfect portraits can turn into chaos if not approached correctly. There is usually a lot more to consider when it comes to a family photoshoot since there are members of all ages, which means that there is some extra coordination involved.

Below are some family photoshoot ideas and tips to keep you and your loved ones calm and smiling the whole way through.

  1. Timing is everything. If you have younger children involved in the shoot, try and arrange the photoshoot at a time when they would be well rested. A rested child makes for happy photos. On that note, make sure that all family members have gotten enough sleep the night before as this helps with the fun and relaxation aspects of the session.
  2. Dos and don’ts of bribery. Get your family excited about the photoshoot instead of offering a reward in return for their cooperation. This tends to lead to forced smiles and an irritated bunch of people. If you do have small children coming along it’s not a bad idea to give the photographer some bribery options in the form of toys or small food items to make those difficult moments a little easier
  3. Relinquish control. As much as you’ll want to direct your children on where to stand and how to pose, it’s best to leave that to the photographer as they know what works best. Not having this pressure will also make you feel more relaxed.
  4. It’s not just about the posing. The best photos happen when you’re having fun so joke and play with your children, hold your partner’s hand and just let the moments happen.Plan ahead. Discuss all of your requirements with your photographer beforehand so that p those sugar levels up. If everyone is well fed, the photoshoot will also run a lot smoother. It’s also not a bad idea to take a few snacks and some water along for those who might need it

Enjoy capturing your memories. 





(Lana Lee Photography) Sat, 17 Jul 2021 19:05:50 GMT
Go from Awkward to Camera Comfortable: 5 Tips to Rock your Senior Session  

When it comes to taking senior portraits, it’s normal to feel a little awkward. Many seniors are self conscious of how they will appear because taking pictures solo can feel uncomfortable. Here are  the top five things you need to know in order to nail your senior portrait with grace and confidence. Put these tips to practice and you can rest assured that you will love your portrait for years to come.

Olivia - Senior 2021 - Mira Costa

1. Use your eyes

Avoid awkward photos by using your eyes to express emotion. When a natural smile occurs the whole face lights up and the eyes look bright and awake. You can practice smiling in the mirror and working different expressions. You want the muscles in your face to contract and change the shape of your eyes to ensure your smile looks natural. 


2. Relax

The best photos take place when the subject is relaxed and confident. Let the excitement of what this pictures means translate through the lens by taking a moment to relax, breathe, and have fun with it. You may feel silly but we are used to this and will help you feel comfortable.


3. Breathe

This may sounds like an obvious one, but breathing is a key aspect in capturing a natural look. You can practice taking a big breath while smiling in front of a mirror. Slowly release the air while holding the smile and notice how your face and eyes settle into a natural and relaxed expression. Allow your eyes to “smile” by focusing on the apples of your cheeks pressing upwards. When in doubt, just breathe.


4. Move

Staying stationary can often times produce a very staged and cheesy look. Just because you are still does not mean that you can’t change your angles to create a fresh and inspired look. Try leaning into the camera slightly to appear more engaged, shifting your weight from left to right, or simply moving your chin slightly up and down for different shots to get a variety of facial expressions to choose from.


5. Beautify

This goes for everyone. Ladies, spend the extra time getting your hair blown out, getting your makeup done and choosing that top that makes you look and feel your best. Fellas, take a shower and shave. If you look your best, you feel your best, and when you feel your best, you act more confidently. Go the extra mile to walk into your senior session feeling confident, attractive, prepared, and inspired.

(Lana Lee Photography) 5 Awkward Camera Comfortable: from Go Rock Senior Session Tips to your Tue, 20 Oct 2020 19:19:07 GMT
Summer Time and the Living is Easy Summertime and the Living is Easy


I don’t know why but at the start of every summer, the song “Summer Time and the Living is Easy,” starts playing in my head. Ella Fitzgerald sings my favorite version of this song. Oh and Sublime does a great remix.


Summer always makes me feel at ease and a little wild. Rules go out the door. Well, some of the rules. And the worries of homework, bedtimes, and school activities vanish into non-existent. I see the same feelings come over my son’s face when he charges into the home after the last day of school. In hopes of playing endless video games and drinking Shirley Temples every day. 


Our summer includes beach days, traveling and summer concerts on the beach. And these summer plans will include magical and wild moments of courage, quiet and discovery. Watching my son and his friends run into the choppy, unpredictable waves of the Pacific can be a little unsettling to my nerves. But I see their faces full of no fear and laughter and I just want to capture the moment. I want to keep that moment to remind myself of who I was at his age. No fear. And for my son to look at one day in his life to remind him that he had no fear. Watching my son float in the ocean in Kauai seems to bring such peace and quiet to his mind. Its though nothing else exists. I want to capture that moment and show him the peace and try to get him to go back to that moment when he is stressed. Watching my son bopping his head when he discovers a  new song and tries to recognize the notes makes my heart full of pride and amazement of his talents.  I want to capture those moments to keep so my heart won’t burst when he starts his journey into the world without me.


Whether you have a toddler, a tween or a graduating senior, capture those magical, wild summer moments. Get close to their faces and notice those long lashes and sun-kissed freckles. Give them some space and let them discovery some independence and solitude. Let them go to the front of the stage and watch as the summer wildness comes dancing out them.  

(Lana Lee Photography) summer photography blog summertime swim googles swim ocean Thu, 21 Jun 2018 07:42:56 GMT
Christmas Card Showdown Christmas Card Showdown

It’s Christmas time: The time for the magic of Santa. The giving of gifts. The acts of charity and love to all. And it’s the time of the Christmas Card Showdown!

The Christmas Card Showdown is the unspoken competition of who has the best Christmas Card. Who is the most creative? Who has the best composition? Who has the best family photo? Remember the Jones’s card last year with their 50s theme and the pipe smoking dad? Who has time to set up such an elaborate set? And what about the Patrick’s card with the pretty circle of lights in the background of their family photo? What is that? Well that is Bokeh.

What is bokeh?

The definition from Wikipedia states Bokeh, in photography, is the aesthetic quality of the blur produced in the out-of-focus parts of an image produced by a lens. The term comes from the Japanese word boke which means blur or haze.
My definition, those pretty light shapes coming off a light source in a blurred background. 

How do I get Bokeh?

Achieving Bokeh will depend on your lens and your aperture setting. You’ll also need a light source: example - Christmas Tree / Christmas Lights

Aperture Setting: To obtain those pretty light shapes in the background of your photo, you need to use your widest aperture (lowest number) possible and have your focal point on your subject. Adjust your aperture according to how much you want your subject in focus. But remember the wider the better. 

Lens: The lens and how many blades it has will most likely determine the shape of your Bokeh. A 50 mm lens will have 5 blades and may make your Bokeh look more octagon. A 85 mm will have 7 - 9 blades and may give you a more rounded, circle Bokeh.

Light Source: Your subject should be place in front of your light source (Christmas Tree / Christmas Lights). But get creative and play with the position of your light source. 

Now that you are armed with a little more arsenal than before, you can jump into the corral with your shooting lens. And have fun with the Christmas Card Showdown. 

Resource Credit:

(Lana Lee Photography) bokeh christmas card photography Tue, 12 Dec 2017 00:21:48 GMT