How To│Blog Photography

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How To│Blog Photography

Hello my lovelies!

A picture is a secret about a secret, the more it tells you the less you know.

-Diane Arbus

‘I love taking picture’ is my particular way of voicing every second person. That said, I am head over heels in love with taking pictures for my blog to such an extent that I try to make it as perfect as I humanly can. I also enjoy reading and value other blogs that seem to stress on photos as much as they do on what they write. A blog (especially beauty and fashion blogs) without pics is a nightmare to look at for me. I know not everyone is overly enthusiastic about pictures as they are about the content and they are right with their mindset, but for me photographs add extra points to the beauty of a blog.

I was doing a course in Mass Communication (that I later dropped) and it was then that I took photography class for five months. I had a fair idea of how to use a DSLR but I didn’t have one back when I started and so all the pictures were from my Cannon digital camera. When I started out my blog, my pictures were a disaster because frankly I did not know how to take pictures of the products I was going to review. I did not pay much attention to the background, the composition or filters even though I had learned about them in the photography classes. Now having months spent and experiments done, I know the value of a good picture and how it makes the blog stand out.

Initially, I did not care much about pictures when I was reading others’ reviews but now it is a major turn down when I see bland photos or none at all on someone’s blog. I am not saying that you invest in a DSLR, but if the composition is good, the product looks ten times better and more attractive. Here are some of the points that I wanted to share with you and thought it might be helpful for anyone who wants to know.

Picture Quality

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Picture quality of a Camera (both DSLR or a digital cam.) is hundred times better than a  mobile phone. Pictures look much better (and less pixilated) if they are taken from a camera. Now again, I am not saying that you don’t need a smashing DSLR and spent thousands on it for just for your blog pictures, a normal digi cam would work just fine.

If you are persistent and want to picture from your smart phone only, then make sure the pictures aren’t pixilated or blurry. It makes your product appear dull and unpleasant to look at. A blog’s beauty, in my opinion, is its pictures and so keep that in mind while snapping.

Focus

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You took a ton of pictures and finally connected the SD card only to find that your pictures were blurry *headbang* I know that feeling (though I feel I exaggerated too much on the blurry photo). This is one vital thing, leaving all the photography rules and guidelines aside, that your pictures have to be sharp and in focus for the object/product to make sense. When using the camera, switch to the macro mode that will be helpful when capturing an object that is placed in a closer range. Also, make sure you focus on the object and not on the background (something that happens when your camera setting is on automatic mode or when you are too drunk to notice, just saying).

Stock Photo

How To│Blog PhotographyHow To│Blog Photography

I feel cheated when I click on the blog to read a review and instead find a stock photo that is copied from the website. Stock photos are usually the easy way out and I don’t trust people actually own the product and they just use a copied picture because anyone can write pretty lines about a lipstick or whatever product that it is. I really love to see the actual product that someone actually owns and has used so I can believe their words.

Stock photos are anyhow only meant for the website so one can get a fair idea of how the product looks and are generally very small files. They tend to be pixilated and look fuzzy when you put them on your blog and not to forget, leave a dull impression. I know they are the easy way out but your blog would be more presentable if they are the actual picture taken by you.

Lighting

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If you are going to photograph instead of using the stock picture (which I hopefully have motivated you enough to) then we can step further and look at the lighting. This is another factor to bear in mind while you are taking a picture. Sometimes the light won’t be right or it’s not too sunny to take a picture by the window or whatever the reason is, in that case you can use artificial lights. Now, some people use studio lighting but I don’t think that is required if you are just going to take a picture for your blog (unless you want to because perfection and you are best of friends). What I do when the light is insufficient, is that I use a table lamp with a healthy day light bulb and make it face the product. This way, there would be ample of light and I wouldn’t have to use the flash which makes the product loose it’s actual color and quality. I would also like to add that if you are swatching a product, then using artificial light is a better option than using a flash as it reflects back from the subject and becomes too harsh. I have seen a lot of bloggers do it and I really can’t tell what the color of that eyeshadow or lipstick is anymore because of the flash.

If you experiment enough (considering you have a lot of free time on hand) you’ll get a hang of things and you’ll know for yourself which lighting condition suits your picture best.

Composition

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Is the picture better from this angle or that one? Should I take a bird’s eye view or a worm’s eye view? Should it be slant or straight? This, I feel, is the most fun part of photographing. You can use your creativity to create unique pictures. You can take pictures of the same objects from different angles and then later decide which one you like best that is enhancing the object’s beauty.

How To│Blog PhotographyHow To│Blog Photography

Another thing is the background. Sometimes the background overpowers the object so much that your eyes would wonder to the things that are everywhere than on the actual product. You can steer your background clear or place something interesting there, as you please. Again, imagination is the key here and your creativity will guide you better.

How To│Blog PhotographyHow To│Blog Photography

Then is how you place your object. Is it coming full in the frame or are the edges getting trimmed? You have to be careful of this because this one would need a lot of practice. So many times this happens with me when I am taking a picture that I forget to notice that the full product isn’t coming into the frame and is being chopped at the ends. This often does not lead into a good picture, as you can compare both the photos.

Filter/Editing

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This is another fun bit and the reason why I spend most of my time with my laptop. I love editing I am obsessed with editing. I love playing with filters and see which one suits the picture best. I love trying new software’s, sometimes in my laptop/tablet or otherwise online. For me, editing is as fun as taking the picture if not more but if this is not your forte and you don’t want to be continuing the whole hog then maybe you can skip it. Some people like their picture natural and unfiltered, and that is fine too after all it all depends on your preference.

If you love to experiment with picture filters and other aspects, then we are on the same boat. Now because I use a window’s laptop and my tablet has an android OS as well, I usually use Picasa or Pixlr Express which are the most basic and fun editing apps. There are so many softwares out there that you can try according to your needs; you can also use photoshop if you wish but that’s a complication on its own. You can try different filters and have fun.

***

Of course there are other guidelines while taking pictures but that can be skipped if you just wish to take pictures for the blog and this should be all that can get you a nice picture. I hope this was of any use to use and helped a little. More than that, I really enjoyed taking pictures and writing this post and just realized that this was the longest I have put on the blog so far (so I am hoping you stuck around to read it till the end). I also want to say is that the photos that you take should be your personal style and should satisfy You. You don’t have to stress to take pictures like a pro or anyone else matterfact, just keep on experimenting and you’ll find your style. You’ll perfect with time so while you’re at there taking photos, have some fun!@thatweirdgirlofficial

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