Creative Valentine's Day Photography Ideas

Take a Picture and Create a Custom Gift of Love

Valentine's Day is a day devoted to love and affection and photography is a great tool to celebrate and showcase that love. This is the time to pull out the red, pink, and white props, grab a few roses and maybe a bunch of balloons. Then you simply let your imagination fly free with your camera in hand, of course.

Whether you're looking to create a glamorous portrait, a quirky photo card, or a hand-crafted scrapbook, we have a few ideas  to share that are sure to spark your creative side....MORE Take one or two of these concepts and put your own spin on them. They're sure to make this one of the most memorable Valentine's days you've had yet.

  • 01 of 05
    Carried Away By Balloons Photo Illusion Example by Liz Masoner©. Photo ©Liz Masoner, All Rights Reserved

    This photo illusion is a fun way to show off your camera skills and there's no Photoshop involved! Instead, you're going to use old-fashioned photography skills to pull it off and make your little sweetheart look as if they're floating away with a bunch of red balloons.

    All you need to recreate 'Carried Away by Balloons' is your child, at least five balloons, a steep hill, and your camera. 

    The trick here is to get your model to jump in place while holding the balloons. To make...MORE it realistic, you want to catch them near the end of the vertical leap (not when they're falling) and ask them to keep their legs as straight as possible.

    Your job as the photographer is to use a fast shutter speed to stop and capture the action. It will probably take a few tries to get the perfect photo, but it's a fun project that will help you perfect your action photography skills.

    Once you get the shot, take it into your favorite editing program, add some adorable Valentine's Day text, and print out a card to send to family and friends.

  • 02 of 05
    Lollipop Holder Valentine's Day Photo Card Craft. ©Liz Masoner

    This is a super fun idea and it's sure to be a big hit at your child's school Valentine's Day party. It's also very inexpensive and a creative way to give a lollipop to anyone on your list.

    To create this photo craft, choose a nice, clean background that's free of distractions and in a place where you can photograph from a high angle. Looking down at your child, take the photo with them holding their fisted hand out toward the camera. Get a great smile and have fun!

    When you...MORE get the photo into your computer, add whatever cute graphics and effects you like. Hearts, sweet phrases, and any of the typical Valentine's day decorations are great additions. Be sure to not overcrowd the photo, you still want your child to be the focus.

    Print out your finished photo and cut two slits to insert the lollipop stick into. If you do it right, it will look as if they're personally handing the recipient a candy treat. It's a very cute idea and a fun project to work on as a family.

  • 03 of 05

    A fantastic way to incorporate photographs into a family craft project is to get out the scrapbooking supplies. Valentine's day just happens to be a perfect excuse to get a little crafty and create custom gifts, cards, and scrapbook pages.

    Let your creativity run wild with these ideas. Maybe you'd like to recap the year of family events in a love-themed page or you'd like to send grandma a homemade accordion card with the kids' pictures. You can even create a miniature scrapbook...MORE celebrating your family's love. 

    Also, think about converting your pictures into black and white photos before printing them out. You can create a very dramatic and memorable layout by pairing black and white photos with the pinks, reds, and whites we use for Valentine's day decorations.

  • 04 of 05

    Valentine's Day is all about love and the colors red and white. There are many different ways to express love in photos and you can include some of these iconic symbols as props and backgrounds.

    Red and pink backgrounds are a great way to add a splash of color to any photo. However, make sure that your clothing and other props don't clash with those colors. Keep the color scheme simple and consider using a clean white for clothing, candles, and other props.

    Flowers, particularly roses, are...MORE another fantastic choice that can be used to create dynamic, romantic, or fun Valentine's day photos. They don't even have to be real, so save your money and skip florist's roses. Instead, stop by the craft store and pick up a few fake roses.

    Other fun ideas include graffiti hearts (or hearts of any kind), bubbles, crayons, lace, and sandcastles on the beach. Have fun with props and your surroundings. Even a group of rocks placed in a heart shape on the sidewalk can make a great Valentine's day photo.

    Continue to 5 of 5 below.
  • 05 of 05
    © Liz Masoner licensed to About.com, Inc.

    One of the easiest and possibly most dramatic photos you can create for Valentine's day is a simple portrait with a soft focus. The subject can be your child in front of a beautiful tree, your family walking down a wooded lane, or even a romantic scene you set up in your home.

    Traditionally, photographers would put a soft focus filter on the camera lens, but the digital darkroom has made the effect even easier to obtain.

    Using your favorite photo software, look for the soft focus or blur...MORE filter and adjust it to your liking. Be sure to work on a separate layer that you've duplicated from the background photo. This ensures that you can fine-tune the effect, soften it, and adjust the opacity, brightness, and other blending options as you see fit.

    One popular technique for creating dreamy, fairytale-like photos is called the Orton Effect. While it was created using Photoshop, it is possible to recreate it in other programs as well. It's very easy and with the right photo, it can create the most glamorous images.