Done your Christmas shopping yet? Take advantage of Motif’s Cyber Monday sale to create a personalized photo book or calendar for your family

Motif has been helping users make customized photobooks on desktop for a while now, and their parent company was Apple’s official printing partner for years. So you can trust these guys to provide high-quality prints. What’s more, their new iOS app takes the hard work out of the creation process, too, by automatically scanning your photo library to pick out the best snaps before letting you tweak things to perfection. Everything can be previewed in-app – including dozens of professional layouts – and they ship worldwide. It’s a great excuse to get some of those neglected snaps out of your camera roll and into the real world.

The current sale is technically for Cyber Monday, but it comes at the perfect time to prepare some bespoke gifts for the holidays. Order before midnight on Dec 3 and you can get 25% off photo books with promo code CYBERGLOW25 or 15% off calendars with promo code CYBERGLOW15.

If you don’t have anything quite right for printing now, bear Motif in mind when the extended family visit for Christmas and you can make sure to get some print-worthy snaps for next year! In case you’re short of inspiration, we reached out to the professional photographers at Motif for their top tips on setting up the perfect Christmas photo. Stick your iPhone somewhere stable, turn on the self-timer, and then follow these tips for a sure-fire hit this season!

1. Clothing

Think about what your family should wear in the Christmas photo and try to have a single theme reflected the photo. But don’t go overboard and have everyone wear the same thing.

2. Varying heights

Try to keep everyone – including babies and pets – at the same height. Holding up a puppy close to your face will look cute and also stop your favorite pooch from running away!

3. Lighting

Make sure the light is in front of you. If the light is behind you, it creates unnecessary shadows – this is Christmas, not Halloween.

4. Props and decorations

Remember that your beautiful Christmas tree and decorations are only props, and the true stars of the photo are your family members. Don’t fight with the decorations…

5. Outdoor photos

If you’re thinking about taking a photo outside, timing is key. With the days getting shorter, there are less opportunities to find great lighting. Later mornings and early afternoons are ideal, and don’t be afraid to take photos on a cloudy day.

6. Poses

Avoid false smiles, a photo can really capture the spirit of Christmas. Singing songs or telling jokes are great ways to loosen everyone up and get them feeling festive.

7. Focus

Everyone should have one point of focus, whether that be the Christmas tree, the camera, or the delicious meal that you’re about to sit down to. This ensures that anyone looking at the photo will be able to share the same sentiment as you and your family.

Of course, these tips are handy no matter what you intend to do with the photos – but to turn them into quality physical gifts, you can’t go wrong with the Motif app for iOS.

Motif