Away we go to the land of formal photos, where everyone’s happy! Except for the photographer of course who’s being pressured into taking a great shot with no time to do it in…

If that’s you, you’ve probably got a family all mucking around, impatient for you to take their photo. You’re fumbling around in your camera bag, taking a few test shots and wondering why everyone looks blown out, completely white or just not very human. Don’t worry, take a deep breath, grit your teeth and take control of those mutinous troops by running them through these 5 drills.

1. Close ranks
Get the troops situated and squash them all together. Arrange them into rows and put the tall ones at the back and the short ones at the front.

2. You at the back!
Make sure everyone’s face can seen by staggering each person so their head is between the shoulders of the the people in front of them. Remember to mark a space for yourself!

3. Munitions check
Put your camera on a tripod and select aperture f5.6. Set the shutter speed and ISO so the background is nicely exposed – don’t worry about exposing for the troops, but make sure your shutter speed isn’t going below 1/80th.

4. Radio for backup
Set a wireless flash up to hit a wall or a ceiling behind or beside you. Take some test shots and change the power as needed. When you’ve got it, set your timer and press the shutter.

5. At ease!
Double time it to the firing line. Smile and make the shot!

Got a massive group to shoot?

Check out my video on How to take photos of large groups

Tips from the front line

What hard fought tips do you have for controlling your rebellious troops?

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