Photography Tips for Bloggers

Photography Tips for Bloggers, a Free Workshop

This Summer my friend Kate and I hosted a free photography workshop for local bloggers to help them elevate their photography skills. We offered some light fare and asked that they bring their cameras along so that we could offer hands-on help, the kind people usually need most! Today I’m sharing with you some of the photography tips for bloggers from our workshop in hopes to help you elevate your blog photography.

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How I Edit Instagram Photos

How I Edit Instagram Photos

Above: Black Le Pen / Fashionistas I Met And Liked Notebook / Laut White Marble iPhone6 Case / Illesteva Leonard Mirrored Sunglasses

The most common question I am asked on Instagram is how I get the look of my photos to make my feed cohesive. I try to respond to every message I get, but I thought it would be more helpful (and less repetitive for me) to write a blog post about how I edit Instagram photos for my feed. Today I’m sharing a step-by-step guide to how I edit my Instagram photos. Let’s get started, shall we?

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How to Take Self Portraits (not selfies!)

Photo Tips Series - How to take self-portraits (not selfies!). Perfect for DIY holiday photos!

As a professional photographer, one of the biggest hurdles I face is being able to be in photos with my whole family. This problem runs so common in families where one person takes most of the photos. Today I’m hoping to offer some of my best tips for how to take self portraits so that you can be in photos with your family too!

With the holidays approaching, most people start to plan their holiday photos around early November, sometimes October. For my line of work, that is my busiest time of year, and photographers are notorious for putting off getting their own photos done. I’d imagine it like a handyman’s house is never complete, or an interior designer who constantly changes up their space.

Equipment

You don’t need a lot of equipment to take your own photos, and you can even get by without anything special, but the following can be super helpful:

Camera – One capable of using a self-timer or remote. If you need help, you can read my gear post here.

Tripod – A sturdy tripod to hold your camera (mine is similar to this), or flat and level table or safe place to set your camera.

Remote – A remote or self timer on your camera. A remote is preferred because it allows you to fine tune the focusing for the photo. I use this one by Canon.

Location

You will want to find a location that has indirect and natural light, or a space that is indirectly bright. This means that it is filled with bright light, but not direct sun or overhead lights. Good places indoors are near large windows when the sun isn’t shining directly into them, or a garage door or side of house that is not in direct sunlight. If you need to, you can wait until about an hour before sunset (golden hour) to take the photos. For basic lighting and other tips, read this post.

The most important detail about your location is that it has constant lighting. It is hard to worry about changing lighting conditions and posing yourself and anyone else in the photos.

Setup

Once you have your gear and location done, you’ll want to set up your camera. The most common position to set your camera up in is at eye level, but you can adjust it any way you’d like. If you are taking the photo with a group, have them stand in place before you join them in the photo. Be sure to keep in mind the amount of space you’ll take up and make adjustments accordingly.

If you’re in a group, it helps to set your focus on someone’s face who is already in the photo. If you are taking photos by yourself and in front of something, you can place a small piece of painters tape or washi tape on the wall to focus your camera on before you jump in the photo. Or if all else fails, you can set your camera on auto focus and hope that it chooses the right spot when you push the remote button.

If you are using the self-timer option, you will need to set your focus ahead of time. This may be hard if you are alone in the photo because the camera will usually focus when you push the button, not when it takes the actual photo.

Snap Away

Taking self-portraits is a talent unto itself, so please don’t be surprised or discouraged if it takes more than a few tries to get the photo that you want. Play around with angles and timing and adjust as you go.

Have you taken self-portraits before? Do you have any tips to share?

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5 Tips To Photograph Flowers

5 Tips to Photograph Flowers

One of my favorite things in life is beautiful plants and flowers, I usually share them over on instagram. I love to visit botanical parks, and I love to keep fresh cut flowers on my table at home. I’m not always gifted when it comes to arranging them, but I love to photograph them so today I’m sharing my 5 best tips to photograph flowers with you.

1. Choose your flowers wisely.

You will want to start with flowers that are already pretty, and well taken care of. These are easiest to photograph because they need less work to look beautiful. If you choose flowers that are wilted or beyond their prime you will need to work harder to get the perfect photo.

My favorite flowers to photograph are Peonies (all of them in this post), tulips, roses, alstroemeria, babies breath, and other delicate flowers that are available in lighter colors. I tend to stay away from flowers like daisies and sunflowers which feel less romantic.

2. Set the scene.

Find a space that provides lots of natural light, like a windowsill or a surface near a window. It should be uncluttered and clean in color and appearance. I prefer to photograph my flowers in lighter backgrounds and scenes, but darker areas can also provide for a more moody photo.

3. Lighting is everything.

I can’t emphasize this enough. Lighting is almost everything in a photograph. I prefer natural lighting 99.9% of the time that is even and bright. In the very rare instances when I don’t it, I like artificial lighting in more moody photos. Natural lighting is also more flattering most of the time.

4. Change the view or angle.

Flowers don’t always have to go in a vase. You can tie them together and stand them up, or one of my favorite things to do is lay them down for a photo and take the photo from above. It gives a slightly unconventional angle to the photo and more options as far as arranging the flowers.

5. Get in close.

Most of the flowers I choose to photograph are delicate and have very tiny details that you can only see if you get in close. I love to come in close and different angles to show those little details off. Experiment with different angles and distance from your flowers to find the most flattering photo.

I hope these tips are helpful for you, if you’d tag me in any floral photos you post I’d love to see what you’re doing! I also keep an inspirational florals board on Pinterest with all of my favorite floral photos.

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