Category Archives: Photography Tips

Join Lifecake in celebrating Easter this weekend with our five day scavenger hunt!

We’ll be posting clues every morning from today and we want you to help us enjoy our long weekend by posting your responses to these clues on your Instagram or Twitter. The best ten entries to the scavenger hunt will win VIP Lifecake accounts. Don’t forget to tag them so we can find them!

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How To Take Great Pictures Of Your Children

As a mother I can’t tell you how many pictures I have of my kids on my phone. It runs into the thousands; I’m keen to capture each and every milestone, every cute moment, every funny face they pull. And there are lots of funny faces!

But my children, though they’re my number one subject they are not the easiest people to photograph. They move quickly, don’t like posing for the camera and get bored easily. Bad news for me and my snap-happy camera phone.  Continue reading

How To Shoot And Share Brilliant Video

Last week we talked about how to improve your photos as an iPhone photographer and today we’re taking it one step further: let’s talk about film! At Lifecake we are huge fans of video, photographs tell a wonderful story but you can capture some really magical moments on film. And for relatives who perhaps aren’t able to see your children on a regular basis this can be a wonderful way for them to keep up-to-date with what’s going on in your lives.

But shooting video can prove pretty difficult: it’s easy enough to record some simple footage but how do you polish it up ready for it to be seen by your family and friends? Continue reading

How To Be A Brilliant iPhone Photographer

Once upon a time it was pretty difficult to capture memories of our families. Camera equipment was expensive and bulky and taking photographs on film meant we had the inevitable wait and expense of developing our images.

So thank goodness for the iPhone! That magic bit of kit that means any of us can be a photographer; we can whip out our phone at any moment to take pictures of whatever takes our fancy. And once relegated to a low-resolution ‘snapshot’ camera, the iPhone now has a lens and resolution powerful enough to take pretty brilliant photographs in the right hands. Continue reading

How to back up photos of your baby

By now you’ve taken an obscene amount of photos of your baby. Don’t worry we all do. Where are they all and are they safe?

It’s time to get 1) responsible and 2) organised for 2014 so you can have some peace of mind and enjoy these wonderful memories whenever you want. (If you are like me that’s every night before I go to bed, I flick through about 20, even though I saw her an hour or 2 before!)

Here are the facts about storage and back up

1. Your photos are not safe on a CD or DVD. The organised housewife tells us the shelf life on even the best brands is 10-15 years. This is not a good long term solution. 

2. The hard drive on your computer is no insurance policy. Your computer can easily crash and those photos of your child’s first smiles will be gone and it will all end in tears. 

3. External hard drives can also crash or can be stolen. Ditto for thumb drives. If this is your preferred option think about having a back up hard drive at a different location and doing a regular sync.

4. Social sites, like Facebook, Google + etc are designed for sharing and are not necessarily where you want to dump a lot of private media. Plus Facebook compresses the photos you upload so they are stored at a much lower resolution than the original – which spells disaster if you ever want to print them. 

5. Cloud back up, where photos are stored on a third party storage system is a good option. Services like Dropbox and iCloud are expensive but good. However, they can have limited functionality if you plan to actually do something with some of the better shots like share or print. 

6. Photobooks are a pretty surefire back up and are more fun to share in real time with friends than firing up your computer. There are tons of services out there now. The only issue is sorting your photos for placement in the book can be very time intensive. Consider getting organised and sorting the best shots into a separate file throughout the year so you can easily flow these into a book when the time comes. 

6. Consider a service which allows you to back up automatically and allows you share and print photobooks. Lifecake is a fine example (yes, we are biased). Each time you add a new photo via the app it is shared with the people you love, AND organised into a neat timeline AND safely stored in the cloud AND you can print a high quality photobook at any time. But my personal favourite feature is that I have continuous access to photos from throughout my one year old’s life right at my fingertips whenever I want to revisit them (yes, mainly before bed, but also on the bus, at work, on holiday, haha OK I’m obsessed!)

Here’s how you can start

Lifecake for iPhone or iPad

Lifecake for Android

Lifecake for desktop

5 wonderful things to do with your holiday photos

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If you are like many of us, your camera or hard drive is a little weightier than it was this time a week ago. Fear not. There are many great ways to get that camera roll into great shape in the New Year. No more languishing in random folders. It’s time for action.

1) Make some editsVSCO. it’s true that photo of the turkey might not look much now but see what happens when you experiment with VSCO’s  exposure slider. Don’t go over board with a bazillion presets. Choose a few that work for you and keep your look and feel consistent. You are bound to uncover some real treasures – which you should absolutely not bury!  (You can thank the new diplomats wife for this little nugget.)

2) Make a beautiful collage PicMonkey. The festive season is almost over but a collage is a great way to give yourself a little reminder of the highlights. I made the one above in a flash. Pin it up in the kitchen and it might just help get you through the January blues. We love these collages that we first spotted here at NewMumblings.com

3) Make personalised thank you cards – touchnote. Always worthwile, a thank you note goes a long way, but how better then to say it with a personalised note card. Touchnote makes it easy to create and send personalised post cards for each recipient. We love their idea to use a photo of the moment the gift was opened – especially if it was a gift for a child. 

4) Make something fun to shareFlipfilmer. You can turn any video on your phone into a flip book using Flipfilmer – such a fun way to share a funny holiday moment. Or you can turn a series of photos (like those awkward ones in front of the tree that no one enjoys) into an animated stop motion movie using iFlipBook. This is a great way to share a little snapshot of your holidays in a more interesting way with your friends and family on social networks.

5) Make a shared online journal the whole family can enjoy – Lifecake – you guessed it! Lifecake lets you place photos of your child into a beautiful timeline which is shared instantly with family whether they were there over the holidays or far away. Once you’ve invited family to join, they too can add their own photos of your little one to the timeline so you don’t have to worry about gathering photos over email and filing them as they arrive. Lifecake also lets everyone leave comments on the photos they love, which means you can reminisce on your favorite moments for weeks to come.  

2014 is the year to free your photos! Don’t just sit on them – get creative. If you have any other good ideas on how to make the most of your holiday shots please let us know in the comments. 

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P.S. As you can see this santa outfit was a total hit for us. Thanks to Lifecake Team mate Ed for the loan! 

Kids and cameras

Thinking of buying – or recently bought – a camera for your child? Has the hunted become the hunter? Here are a few interesting tips sent in by one of our customers, Tasha in San Francisco:

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Batteries: Many of the child-friendly camera are battery operated, so he sure to have rechargeable ones and an extra set for trips, so you don’t stress yourself or your child out. 

Backpack: You may want to consider getting a dedicated backpack or bag for children to keep their camera in so that they always know where it is and can grab it easily when heading out the door. 

Outings: Remind your child to take the camera bag with them on outings – even to seemingly mundane places like the grocery store. For most children nothing is mundane, particularly if they have a way to make art. It’s also fascinating to see what children observe even in places that we have all seen a thousand times.

Viewing: Routinely remove photos from the camera and put them somewhere – like lifecake! – where children can view them and see what they have done. It gives them pride and makes the art that much more real to them.

Feedback: Resist the urge to judge what they’ve chosen to photograph or how many times they choose to photograph the same things. For children it’s about the process, not the final product. As it should be!

Damage: Be prepared for the camera to be broken or lost and for the probability of having to replace it at least once. It is an investment in the child’s happiness and ability to self-express. Don’t make the child nervous about breaking the camera!

Books: As kids love books and stories, consider turning a series of photos into a photobook the child can make into a story with captions.

Say cheese!