Five tips for beautiful blog photos...
There's no set rules when it comes to blog photography, or any photography for that matter. It's a creative skill that everyone has their own flare with and if we were all the same then how boring would that be? I do know, however that a few tips along the way can really help you build on your own photography skills and give you a bit of a boost to improve. My own photos used to be absolutely crap and even when I thought I'd gotten loads better, I look back now and realise that I've come even further. It just shows that there's never a point when you're 'there' - you can continuously improve on a skill forever and ever! I've written a few posts like this in the past, I may have even wrote an almost identical one to this - but, as I'm improving my own skill all of the time, I felt it was time for a fresh post with some of the tips that I personally swear by. You don't have to use them, or even agree with them, they are all just based on my own opinion of what a good photo needs and if you have similar tastes to me then you may find them useful too.
Don't just copy everyone else.
I'm definitely guilty of following trends in the blogging community, gold hardware, marble tops, anthropologie mugs... however there is a huge difference between following trends and copying other bloggers work. It's not copying if you're using similar props as the majority of us tend to shop at the same places and pick up the same beautiful homeware bits and things like that. But there are bloggers out there who really do cross the line when it comes to photography, it's so easy to create pinterest boards and take inspiration from various photos without just blatantly copying work that's already out there. As a creative I know how important inspiration is for your mind to keep coming up with new ideas constantly, but there's a fine line between inspiration and imitation. I feel like I've said that a million times as a blogger but it really is true. Having your own spin on your blog photography will make you far more attractive than just creating something that's already been done. If you really struggle to come up with your own ideas, get on pinterest, create some boards full of different styles of photography that you like and combine a few together to whip up something new!
Keep things fresh.
Fresh coffee, fresh flowers, fresh fruit... I could go on. Whenever I add something fresh into my photos, it instantly makes them look twenty times better. There's just something about steaming hot coffee and freshly cut fruit that livens up a photograph. They make it seem more life like if that makes sense? Less of the false and more of the real. That's why I much prefer using fresh flowers and rarely use faux ones these days. People seem to think fresh flowers are really expensive but you can buy a bunch of blooms in Lidl for as little as £2 (I get my pink roses in there all the time for about £2.09) and you can use them over a period of four or five days when they're at their best to take all your shots. Imagine the amount of photos you can take in that time!
There's more to life than flat lays.
I love a flat lay as much as the next blogger and the majority of my photos are flat lays but recently I've been trying to mix it up with a bit more lifestyle photography. I think sometimes you have to think outside the box rather than just throwing all of your beauty products on to a flat surface and shooting. What about some lifestyle photography of you actually using the products? Or lined up where you'd actually use them like on your bathroom sink? There's nothing better than a pretty flat lay but sometimes more 'real life' kinds of photos are much more relatable and do far better on the gram! I personally really enjoy it when I'm reading a beauty post and there's photos of the blogger actually wearing the products, I know not everyone feels comfortable getting in front of the camera but it really helps to see what the products actually look like on a face.
Use props from everyday life.
Props play a huge part in most blog photography and I'm 100% guilty of buying things purely because I think it will make a pretty blog prop. Over the past few months I've started using my blog props box less and less... I'm picking things that are lying around my house that relate to the content I'm writing rather than just chucking in random ribbons and sequins. I still use my blog prop box of course as I love adding a bit of 'pretty' to a photo but I personally think that just like lifestyle photography, flat lays look better with a bit more 'real life' injected into them. One of my favourite props to use is a fresh mug of tea or coffee in a pretty cup, I love that I can drink it during my shoot too! Other examples of this could mean using things like hangers when doing a fashion flat lay, or your passport when doing a travel one. You would honestly be surprised at how good very average looking things look in photos.
Editing is your best friend.
I feel like editing is a lot more important than what equipment you use these days. You don't necessarily need to buy expensive camera equipment but if you don't know how to use an editing program - learn. You can take the prettiest photo in the world and it will look very plain jane until you add a bit of editing into the mix. It's crazy how much editing makes a difference to your photos, so many of mine come out looking crap and then I whip them up into something half-decent in photoshop within minutes. Sometimes it's just a case of needing a bit more brightness and saturation but I don't think I've ever got a blog worthy photograph straight off the camera. I have recently started playing with presets (I use Photoshop though, not Lightroom) and I'm loving how easy it's become to edit all of my photos, plus I love that my Instagram now has more of a theme to it! Investing in a good editing program is 100% worth doing if you're serious about blogging and don't yet own one.
What photography tips do you swear by when it comes to your blog photos?