Give your Best Shot – to Charity!

by Leila S Posted on December 06, 2011

« Back to Holiday, Photo Tips

Donating to your favorite cause is easier than ever in the age of the Internet. Just click and done. It doesn’t have to be your dime that you give though. Charities are always in need of visuals to promote their cause, so consider clicking your camera instead of your mouse. Giving of your time and talents is a bit like going to the gym. Once you do, you find it is easier than you thought it would be and you feel great afterward. Even better – someone deserving is also getting a huge benefit from your efforts. If you have children, teaching them to give back is a great lesson too, especially this time of year.

Ways to donate your photography

-Do a holiday portrait session for a child or family in need and frame an 8×10 print that they can hang on their wall. Share the whole session with them online too.

-Offer to photograph a charitable event or the charity in action and allow them to use the photos on their website and Facebook pages.

-Make a photo book telling the story of a time you gave (like at a charity walk or soup kitchen). Keep one for your family and make an extra book to send to the charity.

-Print and frame a photo of the people that the organization has helped, which they may proudly display in their office.

How did I give back? We all have a cause that speaks to us. For me, that has to be the Make-A-Wish Foundation, who do the most amazing things for little ones with life threatening medical conditions. A few months ago, the Make-A-Wish Foundation of the Hudson Valley asked me about photographing three of their Wish Kids. Of course I said yes and quickly gathered a team of generous colleagues to help out with things like wardrobe styling and hair & makeup. Breanna, Bryce and Mia had a blast and of course it was a treat for their families too.

Charity choosing tip: Some charities are more ‘giving’ than others, with different portions of your donation going directly to the cause versus things like administration and fundraising, etc. Find out more about how your favorite cause stacks up here:

Now go get your give on and share your story with us below.

Leila is a NYC kids lifestyle photographer who writes a monthly blog called Foto Shui – make your photos flow.

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  1. AnnAbbott Says:

    Love the idea of snapping for others. I have done work for my children’s school.

  2. Leila Sutton Says:

    That’s a great way to contribute, AnnAbbott! Happy Holidays!
    Best, Leila

  3. mypetia Says:

    Wonderful idea! I too have done work with my children’s school, but I certainly can expand on that! Great suggestions.

more about Leila S

My name is Leila (l-eye-la) and I'm a NYC kids lifestyle photographer. I shoot kids and families for advertising and editorial clients, and everyday moms & dads from all over the world. I'm always aiming for that perfect balance of expression, action and environment to come together and tell a story. In my case, that story is most often honest and joyful. When I'm not out shooting with clients, you'll find me toting around my gear whenever I have the opportunity to travel or in my own neck of the woods at family parties. I just can't get enough. Parents, friends and family (even my own mom!) often ask me how I get them and their kids to look so amazing. Some of it is technical and some of it is just learning to notice the right details. I'm thrilled to be able share with my fellow Shutterfly enthusiasts my professional advice on how to "make your photos flow". And yes, I use Shutterfly too for my personal snapshots! I've made beautiful photo greeting cards and love their share sites for giving my friends & family insider access to the gazillion shots they're always seeing me take. Visit my website at, follow me on, or peruse my blog - make your photos flow.

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