How to Take Photos for Holiday Cards

Design your perfect photo holiday card this season with tips and tricks for snapping the best pictures for your special greeting.


This year, add a special touch to your holiday cards by including your perfect holiday photo. Your friends and family would love to see your families’ bright and shining faces appear on the festive holiday photo card. These holiday cards will bring people together and show that you thought about them during this busy holiday season. We curated the perfect list of tips and ideas to help you take the perfect photos for your holiday cards. From themes ranging from traditional and classic to fun and mischievous, you’ll find the perfect way to take photos for your holiday cards this season.

Sending Holiday And Christmas Cards

Sending holiday photo cards is a timeless tradition that puts everyone in the spirit of the holiday season. Put a smile on your friends’ and families faces’ when they open your customized holiday photo cards in the mail. Simple pleasures such as sending a photo holiday card during the busy season will make all your recipients happy to celebrate the Christmas and holiday season.

Joyful holiday wishes holiday card with woman and dog

Best Holiday Photo Tips

This year, be sure to include a family photo on your holiday and Christmas cards. Including photos of your family members will brighten up your card and will give your card recipients a huge smile on their face when they receive their card in the mail. These pictures can serve as a reminder to see the changes that happened from year to year. Reminisce on the growth of your children, the new additions you’ve welcomed into your family as well as the memories you’ve captured through pictures. Whether you choose to take your holiday card photos by a professional photographer or on your own, here are some tips and tricks to make your holiday card photo even better this year.

Smiling young family in Christmas atmosphere making photo with smartphone

Choosing A Holiday Photo Setting Theme

To achieve your perfect holiday photo, first, decide what kind of holiday photo setting theme you want. Deciding on a backdrop theme first will set the stage for the rest of your holiday photo planning. Holiday and Christmas cards pictures don’t necessarily have to be taken in the fall and winter months. If you have a photo from a previous vacation or a family party, those pictures would also be perfectly as well. You can even set up a holiday photo session to get fun snapshots of the whole family. Some beautiful examples of holiday photo ideas include:

  • In front of a beautifully decorated Christmas tree
  • Outdoors with orange autumn tree leaves during golden hour
  • At a Christmas tree farm
  • At a pumpkin patch holding pumpkins
  • In nature: on the beach, on a hiking trail, in the snow
  • In your home with your family in bed
A mother father and son are outdoors at a tree farm. The son is kissing his mother on the cheek while she holds an ornament

Coordinate Outfits

Once you find your perfect photo setting theme, coordinating your outfits will be much easier. Dress up the whole family in coordinating outfits to make your photo look more polished and professional. You can dress your family to show off the different personalities each family member has, whether it’s color coordinating or wearing like patterns, these individual touches will make your holiday card photo even more special.

If you decided to use your home as the setting of your holiday photo, wearing reindeer antlers, ugly Christmas sweaters, matching pajama sets, and Santa hats is a lighthearted way to show your family’s love for the holiday season. Also, if you wanted to have a more formal photo background, your family can also get dressed up for your photo shoot in like color palettes, such as black and gold, blues and maroons, and all-natural colors.

Mom and daughter on christmas night in matching outfits

Incorporate Holiday Props

Make your holiday photo more fun and personalized with festive holiday props. Capture moments of you and your family decorating your Christmas tree with customized ornament or adding personalized Christmas stockings to your fireplace. Include pictures with Santa hats and beards, antlers, and red noses while doing funny poses will make your holiday card more festive. Be creative and don’t be afraid to get silly. Using a multi-photo holiday card will show all the happiness captured through these holiday-themed snapshots.

family in traditional Christmas flower costumes, red - green , Santa's helpers - elves, in the winter forest with a chest of gifts and a huge candy

Use Proper Leveling

When taking your pictures it’s a good idea to think about proper leveling. This is especially important when taking photos with smaller kids and pets. Getting down to eye level will achieve a more natural photo with a better scale. Leveling yourselves will make the holiday photos look more intimate and cozy, which is perfect for any Christmas card.

Christmas holiday family photo with parents kids and dog all at the same level

Holiday-Themed Photo Cards

Make your holiday-themed photo card one to remember with these fantastic holiday photo card ideas. These creative ideas are easy to recreate and are great to use in your personalized holiday card. Adding photos to your Christmas and holiday cards will be a good way for your loved ones to see a current picture of you and your family during the holiday.

Proud Boughs Holiday Card with family in christmas tree farm

Classic Family Photos

Get dressed up in your best clothes to cheer in the holiday season with a classic family portrait. This theme is timeless and is a good way to see your family dressed up for the Christmas holiday.

Modern classic christmas holiday card with couple and foil text

Simple & Modern

A great approach to an old tradition but with a modern twist — having a simple modern themed holiday photo will speak to the current times. Utilizing a simple backdrop with casual themed clothing will make the photo feel together with a modern feel.

Spruce confetti holiday card with forest picture

In Nature

Express your love for the outdoors by taking your holiday card photo in nature. Include pictures of your family while on the beach, forest, or having fun at the park. Holiday photos that are captured in nature will have the fantastic outdoor lighting that will make your holiday cards even more magical.

Bouncy Dots Holiday Card with family doing candid poses

Everyday Candid Moments

A great way to show off your family is capturing their everyday candid moments. This will be the most comfortable for them and captures their natural smile. Simple acts will make the biggest impact when capturing these candid moments.

Quiet sentiments holiday card with family in pajamas

Family Pajama Party

Have a family pajama party with matching pajama outfits for your holiday-themed photo cards. Capture your family moments in bed spending time with one another or have your kids jumping around having the time of their lives.

Treasured year new years card with kids

Kids Focused

Feature and highlight your kids in this kids focused holiday card. Gather your kids in their very own photo shoot, highlight their favorite activities, cuddling with one another, and things they can do together as siblings. Include their Christmas mischief side to perfectly incorporate their holiday spirit.

Transcribed joy holiday card with family on beach

Vacation Photos

Sometimes family vacations are the best way to get a picture of everyone in your family. These vacation photos will show you the wonderful times you spent together traveling and your card recipients would also see the fantastic views of your travels. 

A tail wagging time christmas card with cute happy brown dog

Pet Themes

Honor your furry four-legged family members with a holiday card that is all about them. Capture your pets at their most candid moments to show your friends and family how much you love your furry family member.

Wrapping Up

Taking photos with your family for your holiday card is a great bonding time and will capture memories for years to come. During your photo shoot, remember to have fun and not stress — this will be important for the outcome of your pictures. Get inspired by these tips and tricks for taking the perfect holiday photo for your custom greeting cards this holiday season. As the year comes to an end, its important to stay in touch with your family and friends with the perfect holiday photo card.

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