Christmas Interval Timer

How to Capture Your Christmas Morning Using an Interval Timer

christmas morning, christmas photography, interval timer, stop motion, family photography, self portrait,

What you need:

Camera with an interval timer, a tripod or surface to set your camera on to keep steady and level.

How to:

  1. Find a place to set your tripod or a level surface to place your camera on.
  2. Set your f/stop to be a be shallow enough to let in light, but high enough to allow for people to move back and forth without going out of focus. (At least 4.0 or 5.6)
  3. Make sure your ISO is high enough that your shutter speed won’t be too slow causing blur (unless that’s the look you want). We recommend nothing below 1/100-1/125, especially if you have little ones.
  4. Focus on someone in front of the tree or where the presents will be. Make sure your camera is in manual focus so that you can set the focus so it doesn’t change.
  5. Set your camera to take one image every 30 seconds for about an hour and a half. (Or however long it will take your family to open presents, plus a little buffer time so you don’t have to worry about resetting it.)
  6. Have the camera begin taking pictures right before the everyone enters and finish it after the everyone has opened presents and started playing with their new gifts.
  7. Find a comfortable spot and enjoy Christmas morning!

It’s as easy as that!! If your camera doesn’t have an interval timer, you can buy a cheap remote and set up the camera on your tripod/surface. Then keep the remote in hand and push the button to take a photo every 30 seconds or so. A little more work, but still very hands off.

If you need help setting up the interval timer, here are a couple articles that can walk you through it:

Setting up with Canon

Setting up with Nikon 

Make sure you practice setting everything up beforehand so you won’t have to stress about figuring it out and making the kids wait to open presents 😉 The results are fun and the photos will capture every play by play of your family enjoying Christmas morning without you worrying about having to pick up a camera! Here’s a fun video that demonstrates the results you can get.

How To Photograph Your Christmas Morning from April Nienhuis on Vimeo.


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