It’s no secret that I think one of the best souvenirs to bring home from Walt Disney World are the photographs you take while on your vacation.
Not only are they unique to you and your family, but they help to preserve the memories and adventures your family has made while in Disney World.
Plus, unlike most things at Disney (or in life for that matter), the photos are (mostly) free! Yes, there are some initial setup costs involved. Purchasing a camera (or even a camera phone!) is no cheap investment. It’s an investment that is worth it though and tends to pay in dividends in the end, even if you are just using it to document your own family.
The question remains, how are you going to get shots of your family in their element at Disney that truly captures the essence of what it is like to be ‘living the dream’ at Disney World?
By getting amazing candid shots and by learning how to capture such shots by following the tips in this blog post!
Unlike posed photographs, candid shots shouldn’t take too much effort or energy to set up. That being said, a little ‘encouragement’ in the right direction, before you snap a photo never hurt anyone.
What do I mean by encouragement? It comes down to setting your family up in certain situations or being prepared for certain situations. This means, seeing the ‘shots’ before you snap them. Whether this is centered around food, rides or characters, the best thing you can do to get amazing candid shots is to be prepared.
Let’s dive into my favorite situations, and what I do in each situation, to set myself up for candid shot success.
1. Snack Time is a Great Photo Time
Nothing says ‘Disney’ quite like taking a bite into a Mickey Ice Cream bar.
You know the one I am talking about. The one with the hard chocolate on the outside and the creamy vanilla ice cream on the inside. It’s a classic.
So classic, that you need to capture photos of your family enjoying the treat!
The photos you would get if you just let your kids go to town as soon as you get the Mickey bars are sure to be cute. Yet, if you take a little extra time and set them up so the background is more scenic, you’re going to have shots that you cherish for years to come.
Specifically, purchase your ice cream bars and have your kids sit on a park bench near a ride or in front of Cinderella castle. Basically anything iconic in the parks would make a sweet background.
Once you have your kids in position, let them dive into the dessert and snap away.
If you’re in Florida in the summer months, your ice cream bar is most likely going to melt super, super quickly. Knowing this, purchase the bar close to the spot that you want to take pictures. This way you aren’t running all over the park and your ice cream bar turns into a puddle on the floor!
That being said, you don’t have to stick to Mickey bars for the best candid photos. You can feature other snacks as well.
2. Rides Snapshots Make for Classic Memories
One of the most iconic things about Walt Disney World is the rides. Name any of the rides featured inside the parks and it’s going to come with a lot of history. Photographs that involve the rides are sure to invoke candid expressions and feelings.
That being said, some are definitely harder than others to photograph. This is when you get ready to snap the photos right as your family members are walking off of the rides. You’ll get the best shots of them (possibly) soaking wet or with huge smiles covering their faces. For a list of details regarding which rides you shouldn’t be taking your camera on, be sure to check out this post.
3. Characters Photos at Disney Cannot Get Anymore Classic
Okay, I’ve used some form of the phrase, nothing is more ‘iconic’ or nothing is more ‘Disney’ multiple times. A lot of Disney is classic! Yet, seriously, NOTHING is more iconic than characters at Disney World.
You’re bound to meet at least one character when you head over to Disney World, so be prepared and have your camera out for the event. Yes, you’ll get a classic shot setup with your family (hopefully) smiling along Mickey or someone else from the gang, but the moments right before that shot or right after that shot are the ones you want to capture.
This is especially true if the moment is a first time experience. If you’ve brought real littles into the parks with you, then there might be huge smiles followed by a gigantic hug, or there might even be a few tears. (Happy tears of course ;)). Followed by a potential wave goodbye or a kiss being blown to Mickey. Whatever the reaction or expression might be, be sure to capture the moment. For tips on making helping character meet-and-greets run smoothly, check out this post!
4. First Moments Make for Lasting Memories
Speaking of first moments, if this is your little one’s or anyone in your family’s first time to the parks, magic is going to be around every turn.
No, I’m not saying be glued to your camera at all times (it’s your vacation too!) but some of the best expressions come about the first time a family member encounters a special part of the magic.
Whether that be a first parade, the first viewing of Cinderella Castle or a first train ride on the Walt Disney World railroad, each moment might bring about a candid expression that you just don’t want to miss.
5. Down Time Moments Make for Perfect Candid Shots
Throughout the day be sure to keep your camera out and ready. Some of the best candid photos at Disney World are often centered around the quiet moments between all of the excitement.
For example, let’s say you ‘pulled over’ onto a Main Street, USA side street. Your little ones are sitting on the curb or sitting in a cute chair. They might even be, gasp, smiling at each other, or playing calmly with each other! I know, it’s a wild thought. These little moments are the ones you need to stop and capture. Especially because your background is Disney when these moments happen.
If you have in the back of your mind they might happen you’ll be ready. Pull out the camera and capture those candid photos at Disney World!
Conclusion for 5 Candid Photos at Walt Disney World
There ya go!
5 ways you can capture candid photos at Disney World that don’t take much time effort or, really, additional money. Candid moments happen all the time! Knowing when they might happen and being ready to capture them are both keys!
How do you capture the candid moments with your families in the parks?
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