Sunday, October 28, 2012

How to Take Spooky Pumpkin Photos

It just wouldn't be Halloween without a few pumpkin photos now would it!? The big day is almost upon us and I thought it was high time we chat about taking the perfect pumpkin photo! Keep reading for some tips on photographing your lit pumpkins and a few more creative pumpkin ideas.

5 Quick tips for taking spooky Halloween Pumpkin Photos:

1. Turn out the lights and turn off your flash. That spooky glow from your lit pumpkin just won't look the same in the daylight or when washed out by your camera's flash. So turn it off and proceed to tip 2.

2. Use your camera's self timer or a remote. In the dark and without a flash you're going to need a little bit of help getting a photo that isn't blurry. Set your camera on a stable surface or use a tripod to eliminate camera shake that even the slightest movement can cause in low light situations.

3. Pay attention to where you're taking your pumpkin's portrait. Eliminate distracting elements. Try photographing your pumpkin on a glossy surface. This will reflect the pumpkin's glow, adding an air of spookiness.

4. Using an artificial light source inside the pumpkin makes for more even lighting. Candlelight can be a little too harsh. Add a flashlight, use battery operated candles and use more than one light source to make that pumpkin glow even brighter.

5. Have fun with those pumpkin photos. My kids loved taking photos with their lit pumpkins this year! It involved playing a little game we like to call "freeze". They had to "freeze" and remain perfectly still throughout the photo in order for it not to turn out blurry. There could be no blinking, no itching noses, no giggling....they enjoyed the challenge and I loved the resulting photos!

Taking photos of pumpkin's that aren't lit can be super fun too! 

Playing with pumpkins isn't just for kids!

A unique angle makes for some super cool pumpkin-ography!

Before and after shots are the best!

Have fun taking those pumpkin photos everyone! I'd love to see what fun pumpkin shots you capture this Halloween! Leave me a link in the comments so I can check 'em out and feel free to pin/tweet and share this post on FB if you found it helpful!

For more photo tips + tricks check out my eBooks from Ella Publishing:

Real.Life.Photography eBook - how to take amazing photos in real-life situations
40 Top Tips for Better Photos: Simple suggestions for stunning photographs (by Rebecca Cooper)Don't Say Cheese! How to get great, natural photos of your kids (by Rebecca Cooper)

For more Halloween pumpkin fun check out these posts:

Rebecca Cooper

Rebecca is a mom of four. She enjoys crafting with her kiddos, taking photos, and afternoon naps. Rebecca is a professional photographer and author. Connect with Rebecca on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and Google+. Sign up via email for the latest updates from Simple As That.


  1. Can you tell me what your camera settings were? What did you meter on?

  2. Beautiful photos! I admire your talent. especially for photographing kids. Its so tricky mine just don't stay still a second haha

  3. Great tips! These photos are absolutely wonderful, and so very FALL!

  4. I was referred to your blog by a friend because they saw the CUTE pumpkin banner - I am in love!! Beautiful blog! I cannot wait to go back and read old posts and am def posting a link to this post from facebook. Too many people use flash when they shouldn't! We gotta spread the word : )

  5. These are great tips, thank you! I love how you got the reflection in there!

  6. Thank you so much for these great tips!

  7. Beautiful photos. Love the glowing candle light.

  8. Can you tell me what your camera settings were? I was just looking for info like this!!

  9. @Bernice, I metered off the pumpkin but experiment with your shot and adjust your exposure compensation as needed. My ISO was 500 {I could have cranked it up much more!} shutter speed was 1.2 sec, f-stop 2.8. :)

  10. Such great tips! Thank you, Rebecca!

  11. I can't wait until my kids are older to do more and more of these great ideas!!

  12. if there is one thing I need help with its taking photos, ( I need help with many more things but this is one) , I will enjoy following your blog, I just found you today through a friend we have in common!
    Such beautiful Halloween shots,

  13. Love the one of you holding the pumpkin. Very "headless horseman"

  14. This is so fun. I'm glad I found it! Pinning right now. :)

  15. These are fantastic! What wonderful tips. I love that shot of your daughter in the pumpkin patch holding the pumpkin and looking away. So natural and lovely.


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