Tonje Lilleås

How to document your family adventures

Through the Corona Chronicles my focus has been to document our family adventures. And a lot of you probably want to know how you can document your family adventures better. You may find that you can’t separate travels or hikes from another, as images are basically the same. Or you don’t think the images or video you come home with don’t do your experience justice. Here’s a few tips on how to document your family adventures.

Get an establishing shot

One of the things we often do is to try and get everything in one frame. The result is often a wide shot that doesn’t really have a proper focus. Instead of trying to get everything in one frame, start off with one shot to establish the scene. Use a wider angle and focus on giving a portrait of the location.

For instance let’s say you’re in a forest with really tall trees and going for a walk on the trail. In your establishing shot you’d seek to capture how tall the trees are by getting down low, making sure to get the trees, the trail and maybe a person on the trail for scale.

Or let’s say you’re on the beach having a bonfire. As your establishing shot you’d like to get a wide shot that shows the beach, the water and the campsite. Adding too many elements will make it too loud and messy, so try and compose your image around a few elements that tells the story of where you’re at.

Show the activity

Family adventures usually includes some sort of activity. It might be fishing or climbing or picking flowers. No matter what activity you’re doing, showing the actual action is important. That’s when you get the candid images that sets the mood.

Instead of taking an image of your kids holding the fish after you’ve finished fishing, try and capture your kids while they are battling to get the monster out of the water. Rather than shooting a posed image of your husband in his climbing gear, try to get a shot while he is struggling to get up the wall. Get a shot of your daughter putting on her helmet, rather than posing with it on a few minutes later. You get my point, right?

Dare to get close

You don’t have to get all the surroundings to show that your hike is beautiful. Show off details on the ground or pick out details in the landscape that you love.

Also make sure to get closer to the people you are shooting to really capture some great candid portraits. If you’re not getting the portraits you’d like, most of the time you’re too far away.

Focus on what makes this adventure special

Family adventures can look very much the same when you flip through your images on your phone. Most of the time we document only the adventures in perfect conditions. Capturing the windy days on the beach or jumping puddles in the local forest often will give you much more memorable documentation of your experiences as a family.

Even if you only ever do document your family adventures in perfect conditions, a key to getting images or footage you are happy with is to focus on what makes that adventure special. Maybe it was baby girls first time in the carrier. Or maybe you never have visited that exact campsite before. Get the images that will tell the story about what makes this adventure special instead of the ones you could get every time you get outside.

Put away your camera

Let’s face it; we don’t need two hundred images from a hike to remember it. Documenting your family adventure isn’t about capturing as much as possible, but about getting some images or footage that tell the story of that exact adventure. Know when to put your camera down and just be present. After all; what’s the point of documenting the adventure if you didn’t actually take time to experience and take part in it?

Make a photobook or video edit

Documenting your family adventure is pointless if you never look back at your images or videos. Make sure to let your shots live on in a phonebook or a video edit instead of just be forgotten in your phone or hard drive.

Having albums, photobooks, blogposts and videos to look back at is a great way for the whole family to find inspiration for new family adventures.


I hope you enjoyed this post. If you did, please consider subscribing through leaving your e-mail address below. Also it would make me really happy if you would follow me on Instagram and YouTube. I don’t create for the numbers, but the numbers help me reach out to more people who might enjoy the content I create, right? And no matter what you do I hope you remember that there’s always more to explore locally.



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