Today I felt like taking a trip down memory lane, so I took a peek back at some of my old blog posts. I had to look away after like five seconds, though, because I was wincing too hard at not only the content, but the quality of my blog photos. The images were blurry, poorly lit, and shot on the most unattractive backgrounds. They violated all of the photography standards that I set for myself today.
To prove my point, here are a few of the worst offenders…
Scrolling through these pictures, I honestly can’t believe that they aren’t even a year old. It’s amazing to think about how a few minor tweaks to my photo taking strategy has changed my blog pictures so drastically. I thought it would be helpful for any bloggers out there looking to improve their photography. My photos are by no means perfect, but they’ve gotten a lot better since my blog started back in August.
#1 Working the angles
Not every photo needs to be taken head-on. Sometimes an interesting angle can add uniqueness to an image and make it easier for readers to get a full view of whatever object you’re focusing on. When I first started doing beauty reviews, I would take head-on shots of whatever product I was talking about. Now I’ve learned that using angles can create a more interesting and eye-pleasing image. In particular, I like to take photos from high and low angles. I think it produces nice shots.
#2 Adding background props
One change that has really stuck out to me has been the addition of background blog props. Instead of taking a photo of just the product that I’m talking about, I like to add little props to the shot. Things such as doilies and loose pearls can give a composition style and creativity.
#3 Complementing colors
When I’m laying out a composition, one thing I focus on is finding items that pair well together. More specifically, I look for colors that I can carry through the entire composition. Since my background is typically a black and white marble, I think that a bright pop of color is the best way to bring life to the photo. In this one, for example, I paired the peach lipgloss with the peach blush from this palette.
#4 Paying attention to lighting
I’ve mentioned before that I use natural lighting in my photos. While I personally feel like it’s the best option, I realize that a good source of natural light isn’t attainable for everyone. For people who work during the daylight hours, it’s nearly impossible to have a photography session with optimal light. Plus, the weather can be pretty unpredictable. If you go through a week of dark and dreary skies, there’s no way that photos taken in natural light will come out.
In my opinion, the best thing to do is play around with difficult sources of light until you find the one where images turn out the best. When I first started blogging, I took my photos on my bathroom counter. This worked for most things, but if I ever was shooting something with reflective packaging, it turned out very poorly. Paying close attention to the lighting really helped me improve my photography.
This image above was shot on my bathroom counter. It results in a pretty clear image, but the bright light reflects off the packaging.
In this photo, I used light from my window. As you can see, the glare isn’t as harsh as in the one above.
#5 Having fun with it
I mentioned this before, but photography is something that I’ve really come to enjoy about blogging. Instead of looking at photography as a nuisance, I now see it as a hobby. I like taking the time to find new blog props and backdrops, as well as to set up compositions. Overall, I think the more I’ve looked at blog photography as another creative element of blogging, the better my photos have gotten.
How have you improved your blog photography?