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Pro Tips for Great Group Photos - The Trick to Keeping People from Blinking

People blink all the time, in photography we often find that they always blink at the wrong time, that’s why we end up with perfectly fine portraits except for the fact that the subject’s eyes are closed.

portrait photography trick to keep people from blinking their eyes
Photo by: Tord Sollie

The problem is compounded when we are trying to shoot group photos. With groups consisting of 5 or more people, it is guaranteed that someone will have their eyes shut; the larger the group size the greater the chance of this occurring.

However there is one simple trick to keep people from blinking their eyes when you press the shutter. When you have set up your camera and is ready to shoot, tell everyone to close their eyes and only open them on the count of three.  Here’s what I say to people whom I photograph:

“Now that we are all set let us focus for a moment, please close your eyes, open your eyes and give me your best smile on the count of three, ready…….. 1…2…3…. OPEN”.

After saying OPEN wait one more count to actually press the shutter, this gives the subjects eyes time to adjust.  Believe me this simple trick could greatly improve your group photos.

There is one more trick that I use as my fail-safe… and that is to put the camera in continuous shooting mode and take three shots in one burst. This makes sure all of them have their eyes open in at least one of the pictures. And since the lighting, composition and framing are all the same I could easily clone out any issues if needed.

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