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Lately, I’ve been using some really awesome stock photos for my blog. They have been a mix of my own photography and from other bloggers that give stock photos for Free. However, I think my skills have increased enough to write a bit on the topic and share 7 insanely easy tips on how YOU can upgrade your blog photos!
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*This post may contain affiliate links, these links are labeled blue for your convenience. Read my full disclosure here.
First up! If you liked any of my recent blog photos I’ve used for my ‘featured’ blog title pic, here are the blogs that I got the stock blog photos from. Click on the pictures to be taken to the blogs.
7 insanely easy tips for better blog photos
1. Pick your items/choose your theme for your blog photos
- Find similar or related products/items
- Try and keep them around the same color or complementing of each other.
- Office supplies for a back to school post, makeup and magazines for a beauty post, clothing accessories like jewelry or shoes (clean shoes, of course) for a fashion post, etc. These are just suggestions so play around with what you have and take pictures of your favorite themes and layouts for future references!
Keep in mind how many different blogs there are out there! Having specific items for blog photos is not required! It just really helps give the reader a taste of what the blog post is about.
As you can see in this picture, my main focus was the green lipstick. Nothing matches it or complements it. In fact, the background just distracts the eye from the main focus.
This picture is much better. It’s fewer items but it looks so much more put together. I used a pink sweater for the background to give some texture to my photo.
2. Use natural light or flash (use flash only if you have to!)
- Please save yourself the stress and take your blog photos during the daytime. This could be anytime during the daytime, but try and make it during the perfect shade of natural light for your blog photos. Too much sun can be harsh and create major shadows. If you want that type of look, you can absolutely work with it though. I’ve taken a few pictures like that.
- If you don’t have a well-lit area (I don’t) get a light reflector/light diffuser. I have this one from Amazon and it takes away harsh shadows, creating a soft look for my objects, especially when I use my white cardboard as the background.
These pictures were taken on the same day. I use a white cardboard from Walmart (about $8 ) to help bounce light. You can tell it works but only near the back (left side) of the picture.
3. Camera or Mobile Phone?
If you’re using a phone, here are some great apps to edit your blog photos. I use lightroom mobile to edit my pictures. I used to use VSCO until Instagram got the new filters (which I also use when I want some extra umph to my photos).
- It is best to use a camera that gives you manual features but not everybody has access to a DSLR or manual mode camera. So you can absolutely use your phone camera.
- If you are using a phone, check out this nifty little blessing that is a macro/fish eye lens for your phone!
- Using manual mode allows you to have even more creativity over your photos. It makes editing a lot easier too.
The thing about manual mode is that it scares everybody. Well, it scared me. I’m still not an expert with the manual settings, but I do know how to work my aperture and other settings to get the right picture…most of the time. Here is a great tutorial on manual settings!
A few blog photos I took with my Canon rebel t3 in manual mode.
This photo is unedited with the above settings of ISO 200. Not the brightest picture, actually really dark. However, I took this picture is RAW format and I was able to brighten it up.
This picture was taken at ISO 400. You can tell it makes it much brighter without being over-saturated and grainy.
Here are some pictures I took with my iPhone 6s. I didn’t use any apps or manual settings, I just snapped the pic.
The pictures turned out really well and I didn’t have much editing to do. Of course, they weren’t taken in RAW format but they still turned out great!
4. Take your time
- Pace yourself. Honestly. Take your time taking the blog photos. If you rush it, your work will look rushed.
- Questions to ask yourself:
- Would I use this myself?
- Does it catch my eye?
- Would my audience pay for it?
- Is it worthy to be on my blog/website?
- Have a focus object or empty white space. This depends on if you want to use your blog photos to put text on the picture. If you do, it’s more appealing to have some clean space to put the text in. If you’re going to use the photo without text, make sure you have a focus object or that all of your objects are in clear view (this also needs some manual settings to work).
5. Composition is key!
This goes along with the whole theme part of insanely easy ways to upgrade your blog photos. Composition simply means where everything in your photo is going to go.
First step, follow the rule of thirds on any picture you take. Trust me on this.
Second, even if you want that ‘messy’ look for your blog photos, you still have to place them the way you want them before taking the actual photo. Just play around with the objects until you get something you’re content with.
Third, sometimes you can just throw your objects around and it turns out to be the perfect composition…but that’s super rare so don’t depend on this.
6. Add texture and depth to your photos
Even though most of my pictures are taken on my white cardboard, I do take quick mobile pictures usually with my marble table from IKEA, or very rarely, I take my photos with blankets and clothes.
7. Last but not least, make sure your canvas/background is clean
This includes all your products and any props going in the photo. It’s just distracting to have any mess in your blog photos. Sometimes this isn’t the easiest thing, I share my office with my parents and all three of our clothes are in boxes, in the room that I use for my office. It’s hard to clean up the clothes or hide them so I try to not even take pictures where I know the messy background is going to be included. If you can clean and tidy up your space. Do so.
This was such a long post but super informative right?! Now you know 7 insanely easy ways to upgrade your blog photos! If you’ve stuck to the end, congrats and thank you!
Try using these 7 insanely easy steps to upgrade your blog photos and see how much of a difference it makes.