You don’t have to run a photography blog to need good photos. If you’re a blogger of any kind, the quality of your images can make or break your perceived authority on your blog’s topic. You might think that you can simply find good images online to include in your blog. This isn’t such a good idea.
Reasons against stock photography:
- If you don’t own it, you’re probably going to have to pay for it. Even if you find a way around paying for it, there’s a good chance that the owner of the image could hunt you down looking for their cut. It’s easiest to simply create your own imagery so you don’t have to stress about copyright issues.
- Stock photography is so impersonal. Taking your own images personalizes your blog by infusing your own style. These more personal images are known to endear readers more than simple stock photography.
- Lack of cohesion. When you rely on images you find online, you’re at the mercy of what already exists. You’d be hard pressed to find images that are cohesive with one another without them all being done by the same photographer (and you’d be even harder pressed to find a photographer who’s happened to take all the images you’re looking for.) When you create your own images, the style is completely controlled by you so all your images will inherently have what you are looking for.
- Single-use. When you download images from online, they’re not really going to work anywhere that isn’t your blog. When you create your own images, you also generate content for your social media, newsletters, what have you. Two-birds, one photoshoot.
So, okay, you’re convinced it’s time to take your own pictures but you just don’t know how. Here are some simple blog photography tips to help you amp up your photos:
- Know your audience. This seems simple, but it’s one of the most important things to keep in mind when creating content of any kind. Who is your audience? What are they into? What is their visual style? Put yourself in the shoes of your audience when you get ready to create content—you’ll find it will have a lot more traction with your readers.
- Shoot by topic. You may be tempted to set aside a few hours to take pictures of anything and everything to choose from later. While this sometimes works for social media planning, it can be harder for blogging. We recommend that you know what you plan to write about and hold a mini-photo shoot to take the exact images you think you’ll need. This will help hone in your ideas and ensure all the images of that post are cohesive in style.
- Keep your camera on you at all times. Even if you’re not necessarily a lifestyle blogger, sometimes you just want to “blog” in the traditional sense of the word... “hey guys, this is what I’ve been up to.” Nothing is worse than wanting to blog about something you don’t have pictures of. You can try looking up pictures of the same location online, but the effect just isn’t the same. Make sure you have your camera on you when you go on family outings, vacations, or anywhere you might think, “hey, this would make a great blog.”
- Master the top-down technique. We’ve all seen the “top-down” style… these are insanely popular in blogging and social media. The concept is easy to create and fun to play around with. They can be applied to just about any topic, so whether you’re a food blogger, fashion blogger, craft blogger, even mommy blogger, the top-down technique needs to be in your book of photography tips!
- Quality is key. Image quality is crucial in establishing the tone of your blog, and your authority on the product. Make sure your images are clear and high quality. Fuzzy or grainy images do not bode well for your brand or your authority.
- Don’t forget about lighting. Blogs with dim, out-of-focus images don’t do as well as those with clear, bright images.
You might have a few objections to these tips, such as:
I can’t do all of that by myself, but I don’t have the budget to hire a photographer!
You don’t need a photographer. You can accomplish perfect blog photography on your own with the SHOTBOX!
But I don’t want to invest a lot of money in getting an expensive camera and elaborate light set-up.
Well, the SHOTBOX is the light set-up. It’s a tabletop lighting studio that is self-contained, collapsible and easily transportable. It’s extremely affordable in comparison to most photography light setups. The best part is that the SHOTBOX was designed to take photos with your smartphone, so you don’t need to invest in a fancy camera.
If it’s in a box, I can’t do those top-down photos!
Uhhh… that’s actually the whole point of the SHOTBOX. There are several open sections on the top of the SHOTBOX so you can place your phone on top of the box and still be able to snap a picture of what’s inside.
But what about the bottom of the box? That probably won’t make a great “background.”
Well, we’ve thought of that too. There are several options for backgrounds with the SHOTBOX! We offer 4 colors of long canvases in order to create the “infinity background”—these are great for making the subject of your photo “float.” We also offer a variety of background packs to create the illusion of various surfaces and textures.
Well…. I guess I’m out of excuses.
Yeah. We know.