Blog photography is definitely a challenge. Unless you’re a professional photographer, it takes a lot of trial and error to figure out what looks best and how to achieve it. My blog is over a year old, but I still feel like each photo session teaches me something new about photography. It’s one of those things that you can always learn more from, no matter how much you do it.
Anyways, one thing that’s really changed for me is the way I approach blog photography. More specifically, the things I think about before I actually begin taking my photos. This may surprise people who haven’t done much yet, but blog photography requires a lot of meticulous planning and arranging. For people like me, who worry about even the slightest angles in the composition, it takes a while to produce a picture that looks exactly how I want it. This can be annoying, but it definitely leaves me a lot happier with the final product.
Today I started thinking a bit about my photography process and the thoughts that go through my head as I’m getting ready to take pictures. By no means am I a professional, but these are some things that have really helped me better my photography and make the most out of my sessions.
Will the light hold?
If you use natural lighting, it’s best to avoid scheduling your photo sessions at times when the weather could suddenly change, such as sundown. There’s nothing more irritating than getting a flatlay all set up only to realize that the lighting is terrible. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been so preoccupied with the actual composition that I forgot to think how how the sunset or cloud coverage would impact the look of the picture. It’s important to consider whether or not your planned photography time will be best suited to your photos.
In general, I try to avoid taking photos any time after six in the evening. I find that once the sun begins to go down, it’s almost impossible to shoot a good picture. I try to take my blog photos midday. Obviously I can’t always do this on weekdays, so I tend to take a week’s worth of photos on the weekends. I’d rather have longer, less frequent sessions with good lighting than shorter, more frequent ones with bad lighting.
Does this shot have a clear focus?
In my early photography, I sometimes struggled to identify a clear focal point in my compositions. While this would occasionally result in a fun and effortless-looking photo, most of the time it would end up appearing very cluttered and disorganized. Try to think about how the composition will look in the eyes of your viewers. Will people have a hard time figuring out what the purpose of the photo is? Will they think it’s unorganized? I keep these questions in mind as I piece together my flatlays and they really help me focus on capturing the goal of the picture.
Am I feeling creative and motivated?
I have to admit that I have days when taking blog photos is the last thing that I want to be doing. As I said, I’m not a professional photographer and it takes a while for me to get an image that I like. When I’m in this type of mood, I try to avoid taking photos unless it’s absolutely necessary. I can definitely see a difference in the finished product on days I’m feeling inspired to take pictures versus days when I’m not. If you’re not constrained to a single day a week for photography, I strongly recommend not taking photos when you don’t have the inspiration to. There are other things you can do for your blog, such as writing posts, working on social media, or testing out products, that are just as productive as taking photos.
It’s important to remember that you’re not always going to feel inspired to take photography. Focus on making the most of the days that you are motivated rather than forcing yourself to photograph on the days that you aren’t. It’s a great way to give yourself a break and you’ll ultimately be happier with the results.
Do I have enough time?
This may sound similar to my first reason, but I promise it’s different. Sometimes we have the right weather for blog photos, but not the right amount of time for a full session. Trying to cram an entire post’s worth of flatlays into a five to ten minute span is pretty much next to impossible. By the time you have your entire composition lined up the way you want it, you’ll only get the chance to take one or two shots. And if these one or two shots turn out blurry, you’ll have wasted your time.
Before you start a photography session, think about how much time you have available to you. Unless you’re doing one simple photo, try not to undercut your photography time. If you rush yourself, chances are your photos will be sloppy. I know this from the dozens of quick photo sessions I’ve had. In my experience, I take significantly better photos when I’ve allotted myself plenty of time to take them. Besides, once I start photographing, I like to keep going. There’s nothing more frustrating than having to stop a good photography session because you don’t have enough time to finish.
That concludes this post. Thank you so much for reading! Let me know if you’d like to see more blog photography content. These posts are some of my favorite to read because I love hearing about how other bloggers approach blog photography. It can definitely be a tricky thing, but once you figure out what works best for you, it’s a fun, personal, and creative way to spruce up your blog. Looking back on my old blog posts, I realize how much more personable my blog is now that I’ve improved my photography.
What’s your photography strategy like?