I think most bloggers would agree that photography is one of the most important aspects of their blogging routine. After all, your photography is one of the first aspects of your blog that somebody is going to judge on. I know that when I visit a new blog the photography can make the difference between me staying and exploring, or leaving pretty early on. As shallow as it may seem, I’m a very visual person so I love to see pretty pictures.
As I’ve mentioned many times before, improving my blog photography has definitely been one of my main goals this year. While I am certainly no professional, I thought I should share some tips. These are all very simple basic tips that would be useful for any new bloggers, or anyone simply looking to up their game. In the future I am planning on giving more indepth advice.
Obviously the first tip is to get a camera. But don’t worry, I’m not suggesting you go out and spend £500 on a DSLR. Believe it or not, you can take wonderful pictures on an iPhone or other phone. Holly from The Kitty Luxe is the perfect example of this. She takes all her pictures on her iPhone 7 and they are total picture goals. In fact, Holly wrote a whole post on why she won’t be buying a proper camera anytime soon.
If you do want to get a proper camera, then do your research. I have both the canon 700d and the Olympus Pen E-Pl8 and I love them both. I’ll be honest though: unless you are looking to properly get into photography outside of blogging, I would go for the Olympus. Much more blogger friendly (and completely insta-worthy).
Aside from your camera, lighting is definitely the most important aspect of photography! If you have bad lighting then chances are you are going to have a bad photo. Or you’ll have to spend hours trying to edit your photo (and even then, there’s no guarantee you can save the photo). For me, I find the best time for taking photos is when it is sunny but cloudy outside. If it’s too sunny, your photos are going to be too over-exposed. If it’s too grey, they’ll end up too dark and under-exposed.
If you struggle to take photos during the day, then I recommend artificial lighting. I know some bloggers hate this, but it’s better than nothing. I’m actually planning on investing in soft box lights soon so I can take pictures during the winter.
Below I’m going to show you the difference between good and bad lighting. The first picture was taken back when I first started blogging. I took it at night and used my overhead light for lighting. The second, was taken recently with natural light. I’ve also left it unedited for the purposes of this post.
Props. The things that can make the difference between a boring and a fun photo. When I started out blogging I only ever included the product I was talking about in my photos. I was unsure how to include props in my photos without taking away from the focus of my pictures. Over time I got bored of my photos and realised I had to start including some props. Without them there’s no depth or interest. Props don’t have to be expensive. If you look around your room you will find loads of props. I actually have a whole post on props every blogger should have.
Now, you don’t have to edit your photos. But personally, I like to edit my photos to enhance them slightly. Personally I like to use photoshop for my photos. I’ve used photoshop ever since I was about 13 and I love it. But I know that not everybody can afford or even wants photoshop. Luckily for you, there are so many amazing apps you can use on your phone!
My favourite phone editing apps include VSCO, A Color Story and Snapseed. VSCO and Color Story are the two apps I use for actually editing the photos. Snapseed is the app I’ve been going to for adding text. This is especially helpful for when I create pinterest images. Check out the picture I have at the very end of this post to see what I mean (and feel free to share to pinterest if you want…).
Just remember when editing: don’t over edit! Especially when editing makeup photos. Nobody wants to see a dark red lipstick on your blog just to buy it and discover it’s actually a bright classic red.
Saving the images
Last year I remember I was really trying to produce better quality images, but no matter how good they looked on photoshop, by the time they made it onto my blog or instagram, they had lost the quality. After a lot of research, and asking people on twitter, I found out I was saving my images wrong. I used to always save them as JPEG when I should have been saving them as a PNG. I was also emailing myself the images, and it turned out my email was compressing the images even further.
So essentially: save your images as a PNG. And if you need to save them, send them through something like One Drive so you keep the quality.
What basic photography tips do you have?
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