25 Home Photoshoot Ideas
These days, the biggest challenge faced by any photographer who enjoys a photoshoot is a lockdown. Inability to get creative, head out and take photos results in us falling into a funk where creativity and photoshoot ideas fade.
Being stuck at home doesn’t mean you might as well pack your camera away until this is all over, though! I’ve prepared a super handy guide for those in lockdown for any duration looking for photography ideas.
If anything, now is the perfect time to get your gear out and make the most of the available time.
What’s more, each of the creative and fun home photoshoot ideas and tips teaches you new photography techniques.
Our guide to creative photoshoot ideas at home covers many different genres – from portrait photography to interior design.
Regardless of the duration of lockdown, or it just being a rainy day, these home photoshoot ideas are sure to provide inspiration and guidance while building your photography skills.
Let’s get stuck in.
25 Creative & Fun Home Photoshoot Ideas
1. Talk Self Portraits
Portrait photography of any kind can be done at home or even in the backyard.
Self-portraits require you to plan the location, backdrop and lighting carefully to ensure you get the desired mood in your photos.
Set your camera on a tripod or tabletop and set your composition. Check out this guide which is full of great self-portrait ideas.
Be aware of your backdrops and start with a bare wall, drapes or even hang a bedsheet as a backdrop. Once you get the hang of it, experiment with different backdrops.
Set a narrow aperture so that everything is in focus and use the camera’s self-timer to take the shot. Work with a wider aperture to obtain a shallow depth of field, so your face is in focus, and the background is out of focus – this is the most desired look in any portrait.
Shoot your portraits in black and white with deep contrast to highlight facial features. Also, consider adding some creative props to represent your personality.
2. Photograph Your Partner
If you’re stuck at home and itching to get your camera out and take some photos, consider doing some portraits of your partner – or housemate. Portrait photography is one of the best photoshoot ideas as you only need a camera and one other person.
Unlike self-portraits, you set your scene with an actual model and explain how they sit and look. Try various locations while being conscious of the backdrop and lighting.
Aim for a shallow depth of field to keep the face in focus and the background blurry.
Once you’ve mastered headshots, step back for upper body or full body photos with them lounging on furniture or across the bed.
If you’re feeling frisky, you could even take a crack at boudoir shoots ;-)
3. Capture Kids Portrait Images
If you’re in lockdown and have children, make the most of the opportunity to capture portraits. If you thought self-portraits were tricky, photographing children is a whole new ball game!
Take formal headshots of each of your kids one at a time – use the same techniques described in the other portrait shoots here.
Get creative with candid portrait photographs of your children at play indoors and out. Playtime makes kids expressive, creative and imaginative – capture these moments without the kids even knowing it.
Be sure to get down on their level and shoot from the ground up like a pro photographer – kids face downwards as they play on the floor.
4. Photograph Your Pets
If you have fur-babies at home, they make for very willing participants of a portrait shoot.
Dogs and cats differ significantly in how they behave and respond to a photo direction. Dogs sit still for a shot, provided there’s a treat involved.
I find the best time to photograph cats is when they’re lounging in the sun. Cats love to follow the sun throughout the day and will move from a sunlit patch to a sunny windowsill just for warmth.
If you have a cat that loves to sit on a sunny windowsill, photograph them from outside the window.
The benefit of photographing pets sitting in the sun is the golden light’s quality and how it illuminates the subject.
5. Take Your Camera on Your Daily Walk
If you’re stuck at home and have exhausted all home photoshoot ideas, taking photos on your daily walk is an easy fix.
Even during the lockdown, we’re allowed out for exercise – it’s a perfect time to grab a camera and head out. Be sure to change the route you walk daily to keep the scene fresh.
Capture street scenes, exciting architecture, neighbours, local parks, and reserves – all staples of city & urban photography.
Not only can you take a brisk walk, but also be creative – this is one of the best photoshoot ideas for lockdown. Plus, it’s a great way to get to know your neighbourhood.
It’s the best experience if you wish to become a street photographer taking New York photos one day.
6. Photograph Still Life with Found Objects
Still-life photography is another brilliant home photoshoot idea that’s both fun to set up and easy to shoot. Capture scenes of inanimate objects as a form of art – this genre has existed for centuries with painting and drawing.
Create scenes of flowers in vases, platters of fruit or everyday objects – be sure to consider lighting and background elements.
Set up near a window to make the most of the natural light instead of your ceiling lights that case a yellow glow. Or use on or off-camera flash units to make a scene pop.
You already have items around the house perfect for still life photography. Or collect found objects to appear such as shells, driftwood and dried sea-life while out on your daily walk.
7. Take up Toy Photography
If you have children or collect interesting toys, you have the perfect subjects for toy photography. It’s by far one of the most enjoyable home photoshoot ideas as you can also create exciting scenes to pose your subject.
Toys are desirable collector items that generate nostalgia and longing for youthful experiences.
Pose Star Wars figurines inside the backyard sandpit. Control depth of field and angle to photograph a lone Storm Trooper walking the Tatooine deserts. Check out my in-depth guide to toy photography here.
8. Make Use of the Rain
Rainy days usually end our most ambitious photography plans. Several home photoshoot ideas turn the wettest of days into a creative success.
Street photographers will tell you that shooting after the rain brings the street alive. Water creates glossy reflections everywhere and adds depth to your photoshoots’ scenes.
The same applies to home photography as your garden, walkways, and streets cast reflections. Large puddles are a great way to capture mirror shots of the clouds above.
Make sure to get in close to plants and foliage as water beads on the surface – the same applies to a photo of morning dew forming on leaves and spiderwebs.
Capture your reflection in the puddles found in your backyard.
9. Photograph Water Drops
One of the best home photoshoot ideas involves photos of a water drop frozen as it falls – plus, it only needs a few ingredients from your kitchen to make the shots work.
Use a camera with an adjustable shutter speed to freeze the droplet as it forms a perfect tear-shape.
Add drops of food coloring and use a contrasting color in the background – use milk for the perfect white droplets.
Place a full bowl of water on the table and set up your camera in a fixed position close to the bowl – a tripod is best for this.
Make sure to point the camera downwards to frame the shot with no edges of the bowl in view. Focus your camera manually to ensure a sharp photo at the centre of the frame.
With an eye-dropper, release a single drop, so it falls in the centre of the in-focus area. Alternatively, place the bowl in a sink and turn the tap on a slow drip.
Trial and error ensure the best timing between releasing the droplet and pressing the shutter button. Take photos of droplets before they hit the water, as they enter the water and bouncing up from the surface to form a crown.
10. Clean up Your Interior Design
If you’ve used lockdown to spring-clean your home and rearrange furniture, be sure to document the finished product as a simple home photoshoot idea.
Even if you focus on a single room, you can experiment with angles and lighting at different times of the day. Set up your lounge or bedroom with clean spaces, cushions and throw rugs to replicate the kind of photo found in designer magazines.
Use the widest angle lens available to make the room feel bigger and add a dynamic look to your lifestyle photography. It’s how professional real-estate photographers achieve pictures that sell houses.
11. Call upon Your Neighbours
If you have a good relationship with your neighbours, a great idea is to include them in a portrait project.
With everyone in lockdown, they’ll be looking for something to break the monotony too.
Shoot portrait photography with your neighbours standing at their front door or gate with their homes as the backdrop. Make this a challenge on your daily walk to engage your neighbours to participate.
Not got any neighbours? Organise a best friend photoshoot instead.
12. Shoot the Same Scene Every Day
A popular home photos idea is to photograph the same scene every day.
A compelling example is taking a daily photo to document a young child’s growth. The images are fascinating, but the results are powerful when stitched together as a short video.
Alternatively, photograph your backyard, the view from your window or front door at the same time every day. It’s a tremendous form of documentary photography if you live on a busy street.
The garden shoot works well if you’re in the transition time between seasons.
13. Conduct a Fashion Shoot
Fashion photography may seem like one of those photoshoots out of your league. But, if you live with someone that loves fashion, encourage them to put together a range of stunning outfits for your photoshoot.
Make sure to direct and pose the model to showcase their fashion style in a range of full-body portraits. Make the most of working around the home, garden or local park for stunning lifestyle fashion photography.
Such photoshoots are a great way to build upon your model-direction skills for future projects.
14. Photograph Someone Cooking
Photographing someone cooking is a fun way to mix up the home photoshoot ideas.
Get in close as someone pulls ingredients from the fridge and keep shooting as they wash vegetables, weigh and cut up ingredients.
Capture images of the final stages of the cooking process and plate-up. Candid photos such as this are something that people look for in visual storytelling.
The next step in this process is by far one of the most popular photoshoot ideas – plus, you get to eat.
15. Food Photography
Food photography has gained popularity thanks to social media – people love sharing their meals no matter where they’re eating.
Being at home is no different as the opportunity still exists to share your #lockdownlunch with the world.
Top-down shots get the best views of plated food but don’t be afraid to try different angles. Plating up a meal on your best plate is not enough – you need props.
Creatively arranged food makes food photography look best. Placing the plate on a timber chopping board sitting on the table add more depth and interest.
Placing scatterings of the raw ingredients and even cooking utensils adds more to the overall composition. Food photography is not just about the food but about representing the finished product.
16. Create a Personal Documentary
Something we take for granted and makes for a simple activity while stuck at home is to document your daily routine from your point of view.
From the moment you wake up, take a photo of your alarm clock showing the time. Then take snaps of your morning routine, from putting toothpaste on your brush to brewing your first coffee of the day.
Photograph your day while you work or relax, wash the dog, check the letterbox or even butter your bread – take photos of a few things or everything.
The final photo brings the series full-circle with a shot of your bedside clock just before you go to sleep. Publish this series in your blog post with regular updates.
17. Photograph Someone Working
Take your home photoshoot ideas up a notch by photographing someone at work.
If your partner or housemate work from home, document their day. If someone you live with works with their hands, photograph them working on their car or building something in their workshop.
Get in close to the action as they cut timber with a circular saw or grind metal into sparks. Turn the mundane into an exciting story-board of great photos.
18. Get Dirty in the Garden
If you love gardening regularly, make it the theme of a documentary-style photoshoot.
Capture photos of boots standing in muddy soil, gloved hands pruning roses or even the dirt and sweat on a brow. Take photos of the details that form a story of a sunny afternoon in the garden.
Combine these images with shots of vegetables, flowers, garden tools and neatly planted seedlings.
19. Get Close with a Macro Shoot
A popular home photoshoot idea is experimenting with macro photography. Macro is not just about getting up close and personal with the world’s creepiest crawlies.
Photograph anything up close with a macro lens to see the details of insects and arachnids in their garden homes.
Consider using a macro lens to photograph jewellery, coins, and everyday objects.
20. Use Mirrors for Creative Impact
Everyone has mirrors around the house, so make the most of them for exciting mirror photos. Mirror photography ideas have been around since the first camera and are a great way to seek a different perspective.
Take the tips learned earlier to shoot a portrait subject by reflecting a mirror. Or use one to take a photo of yourself.
By including the mirror in the composition, you’re adding to the story.
Use mirrors to take candid photos of family within the home as they go about their day. Mirrors allow for stealth and add a lot to your photos’ narrative.
21. Clean Your Window and Shoot Reflections
Taking shots at a window from an angle allows you to capture subtle photos of what is outside and inside the house.
With a subject standing inside the home looking out the window and you outside looking in, you have the perfect scene for a portrait.
Window reflection portraits show the person’s facial features sitting inside the room. The room’s details disappear into the darkness, providing a nice contrast between the subject and their surroundings.
The window shows a ghost reflection of the scene facing the subject and adds new elements to your story.
22. Take a Bath
Have you ever seen images of a person floating in the water surrounded by floating objects? Create this photoshoot with the help of a friend and a few props.
Fill a tub and have your subject lay face up. Surround the face with floating leaves, rubber ducks, flowers or even slices of fruit. Or, run a super bubbly bath and blow bubbles into the room for added effect.
Take your photos top-down to frame the shot so their face is centred and the props float around them.
Not only will you have a lot of fun setting up the photoshoot, but someone will come out clean in the end – unless you fill the tub with milk or blue dye. (Milk bath photography is actually a thing!)
23. Rely on Natural Lighting
If you don’t have access to softbox lighting kits, make the most of the available natural light.
Stroll around the house and observe the angle and quality of light coming in through the windows at different times.
Plan for a portrait or still life shoot optimised with that natural light.
If you have a perfect room in mind, but the light is too harsh, hang a white bedsheet across the window or doorway to diffuse the light. Bedsheets of all colors make for great backdrop ideas too.
For a dappled effect, hang lace across the light source to cast a patchwork of shadows.
Be aware of the play of shadows and how they fall on a scene or subject. Shadows create an excellent contrast between the seen and the unseen.
24. Master Artificial Light
Artificial light takes two forms – camera flash gear intended for photography and regular household lighting.
With an on or off-camera flash, you control the amount and quality of light in your photography. Light stands, softboxes and beauty dishes form part of a lighting kit perfect for portrait and indoor work.
If you don’t have access to that kind of kit, there are plenty of other solutions available in your home for a photoshoot.
Search for fairy lights or Christmas lights to use in a portrait session. With a shallow depth of field, the lights become soft blurry bokeh balls in the background.
Or, for a fun look, have your subject hold a handful of balled-up fairy lights and photograph them in a dark room.
Even a single exposed light bulb in a dark room adds a lot of drama to the overall scene – the old kind with a visible element.
My tip is to make sure to work with suitable shutter speeds and apertures to get the right depth of field and control the amount of light hitting the camera sensor.
25. Create Double Exposures
Double exposures allow you to take photos of two separate scenes and blend them to form one photo.
One way is to take a photo of your model and another of a garden scene. The camera combines the images to blend the two photography concepts.
Get it right, and it looks like the silhouette of your model is the canvas for a landscape scene.
If you don’t have this function, plenty of editing apps are available for use on a computer or smartphone that achieve the same look.
Don’t let lockdown or isolation be the end of your creative photo ideas. If anything, it’s the perfect time to get your camera and try a whole range of home photoshoot ideas.
Our guide is much more than just a collection of photography tips and related articles. It’s a support for every photographer affected by a world that has suddenly changed.
Your home and immediate neighbourhood are packed with potential subjects just waiting for you to take photos. Your partner, housemate, kids and pets make the best subjects in a photoshoot. Household items make for perfect props, and bedsheets become ideal backdrops.
And the best bit, you’ll significantly enhance your photography skill-set through experience and practice.
If you have any other home photoshoot ideas, tips, photography inspiration, questions, or have something to say on the subject; please leave a comment below.