Tips || Upping Your Blog Photography Game



Little disclaimer: my blog photography is far from perfect! However I do feel I've made some real improvements so I thought I'd share some tips if you (like me!) are a bit of a photography beginner. Whether we like it or not; photos are a part of our blog content so it's as important an area of development as your writing.

For reference I use the Panasonic Lumix FZ200 for my photos; it has a good range of settings, it's easy to use and features a pull-out screen which is perfect for taking selfies! It's so easy to get to grips with and at £339 it's perfect for those of us who don't want to splurge on a SLR, whether it's because you don't know where to start, wouldn't know what to do with one or simply can't afford to spend £800+. I thoroughly recommend it as a blog camera. I generally don't use a tripod however on the odd occasion I use artificial lighting it's an essential - mine was about £10 from eBay and does the job!

You can take good photos on your phone

As I said, I got a bridge camera for Christmas but I don't think that improving my photography was 100% down to that; I think having a proper camera made me take a little more care. Instead of looking at pictures and thinking 'I'm really proud of that one', I tried to make every photo that goes on here one that I'm proud of. Don't despair if you're using your phone for blogging! I think that all of these tips can make your photos look a lot better regardless of what you use to take them. I would just say you should take your time when using a phone camera and experiment with different angles. 

Unedited photo from last year (iPhone 5 camera)


If you can, wait for daylight

I think studio/artificial lighting can work in a lot of situations; generally quite close up shots of products. A lot of people mainly use those type of photos, in which case it's a good option for the evenings. I would also recommend using a tripod for evening photography. However I really rely on daylight as there's really no faking the open, spacious shots I favour. That's really a personal preference but I would say that if you're doing something like swatches you'll likely want daylight too to show the truest colouring possible. I think that if you're shooting on a phone you'll get a better shot with less effort using natural light. Find the place in your house that works best for you in terms of lighting and practicalities. I know most people naturally take photos in their bedrooms but I have a conservatory so that's the obvious choice for me as there's light pouring in from all around (even if it is freezing cold right now!) 

Close-range photo taken under artificial lighting with my Panasonic Lumix FZ200 Bridge Camera, using a tripod (unedited)



I don't think this is a terrible photo but it's just not what I'd have liked it to be and it would've been better if I'd been able to take it in my usual way. It's a big commitment to take my photos in daylight but I just set aside one Sunday morning every fortnight and do them in bulk.

Editing is quick but makes a huge difference

I don't have any fancy programs, I just use free, super-easy online tools such as Fotor and PicMonkey (more the former these days, though PM has some additional fonts I like). They're great for adding text to swatches if there's several so people know which shade is which without having to refer to number and count across. And of course these programs are great for tweaking your photos. I generally dial up the brightness, increase the temperature, reduce shadows and increase the saturation. Sometimes I'll apply a filter but on a low intensity.

Original Shot



After spending 5 minutes editing on Fotor


There was nothing wrong with the original shot but taking a few minutes to improve it makes it look a lot more inviting. Some photos you may look at and think they don't need it. In the main image the photo of my Zoeva brushes has no editing; it was just my camera setting was different than for the others.

Props and finding your style

As you take more photos you'll naturally find your preference. Some people like lots to look at, others prefer things bright white and clear of clutter; it's up to you. As long as it's clear what you're photographing, I think anything goes with readers. Personally I use fake flowers, dishes, potpourri, fairy lights, place mats, magazines and a few other things! All very inexpensive or things that you probably already have lying around in your house. Different shots will lend themselves more or less to props and backgrounds. For a haul post you'll probably want to keep it to a minimum but if you're reviewing a single eyeliner you'll probably want to liven the shot up a bit. Just make sure the focus of the post is in the centre of the shot. This is where you show your personality so have fun with it!




If I can, you can!


I'll just leave this photo from a July 2014 post of mine here...

I really hope some of these were helpful and you noticed I've previewed a few upcoming posts here ;)

What are your top blog photography tips?

 


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45 comments

  1. Some great tips there. I like you wait for good daylight and take my photo's near a window. I have not long gotten a Canon EOS m but that doesn't mean that my photos have gotten better just because of the camera, I am still learning how to use it :)

    Pams Stuff and Things
    LORAC PRO Palette Giveaway

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    1. Yeah I agree - it takes a while to work out what your camera can do :) xx

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  2. Great tips!!
    I also like natural light!
    xx
    belle-fin.blogspot.be

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  3. Great tips Jasmine! For me, natural daylight is definitely a must! I love photos that use props appropriately, which is why I always try and jazz mine up with old magazines, flowers etc! xo

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    1. Yeah I think props give things a bit of personality xx

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  4. These are really excellent tips! Natural light is a must for me, I can't function with a camera without it! hehe! :) xo

    Lauren // The Beauty Ideal

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  5. These tips are very helpful, especially for those who just started blogging. I can definitely see a difference in your blog photos and I'm really impressed by it! I'm constantly trying to improve mine too! :)

    Olivia x
    Beauty from the Fjord

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  6. This has really inspired me to buy a new camera!!!
    Jennaloves3.blogspot.com

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  7. Great tips! The little bit of editing on the MAC lipstick photo really pays off! x x

    www.beyondthevelvet.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Thank you! Small tweaks definitely make a huge difference xx

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  8. Great post and thank you for sharing! I needed this post as I'm always looking for ways to improve my pictures. Picmonkey is such a great editing website. xx

    Beyond The Velvet | Beauty, Fashion & Lifestyle Blog

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    1. Yeah, you really don't need a complicated, expensive program to do a bit of editing :) xx

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  9. I have to say your photography skills have definitely improved and it shows in your new pictures!! Well done and thanks for the tips...xx

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  10. So glad you've said about the phone photography. Not many agree with me on this!

    Annabel ♥
    Mascara & Maltesers

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    1. I think they'd be surprised at how many photos they'd like were taken on phones! xx

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  11. Lovely tips! I've been really working on my blog photography lately as it's not something that I'm a natural at so love reading these tips. I'm constantly picking up little bits and bobs when I'm out thinking oh this would look lovely in a blog photo. Great to see how far your photos have come, they're so gorgeous these days :) xx

    Love and Marmalade

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    1. Thank you :) I definitely don't feel like a natural either - it's something I work at. And it's great to find different objects as props to keep things fresh and different xx

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  12. Great tips hun, your pictures are always great! xx

    Julie
    www.rainingcake.com

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  13. This post is actuallya really good one for those of us who has just started out blogging! Thank you so much! I always feel like my pictures are so dark and bad... I'll be trying these out!
    www.makeuptraveler.blogspot.com

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    1. You're welcome - I wish someone had told me when I first started out! xx

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  14. Fab post with some great tips! The vain of my life is waiting for natural light to take my photos, I'm so glad I discovered photo editor websites it makes all the difference!

    Roxie ♥
    http://thebeautifulbluebird.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. Haha mine too! So glad it starting to get lighter now xx

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  15. great post :)
    i'd like you to checkout my last posts tanya burr book and urban outfitters on my blog :) x
    http://ladyshazbeauty.blogspot.com/

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  16. this is so helpful, thank you so much! Love your style of photography... I have a lot to learn!! x
    http://lobloggs.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. Thank you :D we all have room for improvement! xx

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  17. great post, thanx for sharing with us
    http://www.simplyzakia.com/

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  18. Great tips :) It is amazing what you can do with some natural light and 5 minutes of editing! I think i have developed a lot in my photography since starting my blog 7 months ago and it is funny to look back at my old photos and compare them to the ones I take now! :) x

    Brenda BusyBee

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    1. Exactly! And me too - cringe-inducing but it makes you stop being so hard on yourself as actually you've come a long way xx

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  19. I don't even want to look at some of my old blog photos, they were definitely not very appealing! But I definitely agree that daylight is a blogger's best friend, my photos come out so much better with it!

    Yet Another Makeup Blog.

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    1. Haha I know what you mean! And so true - it's just an easy way of taking far better images with a lot less effort! xx

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  20. Photography is something I am really working on at the moment. I do have a DSLR, but I am always amazed at the amazing photos you can take on an iPhone.

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    1. Yeah iPhone cameras really don't deserve their bad rep, I agree :) xx

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  21. Great pictures! I like to use VSCOcam on my iPhone or my DSLR! But I have to remember to pack the latter when I go to events, which I don't always do... Lol!

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    1. Yeah that's a really good app for filters and editing :) xx

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  22. This was so helpful! I need to start taking photographs in bulk as atm I'm only taking a few for the week ahead and tend to rush through them. If I spend an hour like you say taking a load I can really plan shots well with pretty props, etc.
    Also going to start using the Fotor site for edits :) thanks for all the recommendations!

    Kat | www.kathorrocks.com

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    1. Thank you :) I think a couple of hours every fortnight or so is way more efficient than trying to do everything as and when you have a moment xx

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  23. This is such a great post! You've shared some great tips, which I will definitely take into account when taking pictures for my posts. Mine are pretty crappy right now (I'm pretty new to blogging!).

    www.daintydweeb.blogspot.com

    ox

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    1. I'm sure yours aren't crappy but we all have ways we can improve :) xx

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