What kind of background could I use for a first communion picture?

Written by dana mial mcmahon
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What kind of background could I use for a first communion picture?
Receiving the First Holy Communion is a memorable event for a Catholic child. (Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Among the many Holy events, or Sacraments, celebrated in the Catholic Church, the most memorable for young children is being able to receive their First Holy Communion. There's such mystery surrounding Holy Communion for kids. Many who attend Mass weekly with their parents from a young age have watched as the parishioners form lines and accept a symbolic wafer into their mouths. When the event finally arrives, they have reached a memorable milestone of inclusion. Typically by the second grade, Catholic children who have completed the prior year's religious education program in their parish may receive their First Holy Communion in the weeks just following Easter.

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Colour and Contrast

Girls will typically wear white gowns for their First Holy Communion. These are best photographed with a dark background. Having a dark background provides a nice contrast to the white and will allow the child to really stand out in the photograph. The same is true if a boy is wearing a light-coloured suit. This doesn't mean that light backgrounds should be discounted entirely. There are several photographs of children posing against light backgrounds that look fine. Dark, however, is better when the child is wearing a light garment.

Religious Statues

Have the child pose in front of a statue of Jesus, Mary, Joseph or the Saint after whom their particular parish is named. Receiving First Holy Communion is acknowledging that Jesus is present in the host that is placed in the child's mouth. As part of the Mass, the priest stands on the altar holding the host, receiving the Holy Spirit, saying as Jesus did to his Disciples, "This is my body which will be given up for you and for all so that sins may be forgiven." As the host is placed into the child's mouth, the priest says, "Body of Christ". It is because of the communion of the child with the "body of Christ" that posing in front of a statue of Jesus is ideal. If posing in front of a statue of Jesus is not logistically possible, see if there is a statue of the Blessed Mother.

Garden Backdrops

The beauty of a child's innocence and purity are well captured among the natural beauty of a well-maintained garden. Since most parishes celebrate First Holy Communion in the month of May, which is at the height of spring blooming season, you might be lucky enough to find a nice backdrop for your photograph right on the grounds of your church. If not, perhaps you can find something within a short walk or drive.

Indoor Backgrounds

Many people want to capture the day and moment of their child receiving their First Holy Communion. Check with the parish office to see if there is a policy that would prohibit you from taking your own photos. The office may have hired a professional from whom you can purchase photographs. Consider taking photos on the days prior to the event. Check with the parish office to see when the church is available. Have the child pose in front of the altar or in front of a colourful stained-glass window or painting of the Last Supper. Try to find something that depicts the final days of the Lord. If you prefer, find something that's pretty and elegant, such as flowers or anything that's aesthetically appealing.

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