Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Tips For Getting The Perfect Instagram Shot

Instagram has quickly become my favourite social media platform. I love seeing peoples daily lives documented in little square pictures and I love playing around with making my grid look as #goals as possible. Joking (kinda). Although the new algorithm has pissed me (and everyone) off a little bit, it's actually made me want to try even harder with making my Insta as follow-able as possible!
Now, I'm definitely no expert when it comes to Instagram. I've got a pretty small following in the world of blogging but it has grown significantly (for me, anyway) in the past year. I've been working on what pictures I post and how I edit them a lot lately and just thought I'd share some of the things I've found that seemed to have worked for me...

Mix it up - I tend to take a lot of the same photos. Ie. food and coffee. Because, lets be honest, I don't really do a lot. So, a photo of me sat in bed holding a fancy mug tends to be my safe, fall back photo! And my followers tend to like this as these photos literally do get the most likes. However, I do try and mix it up a bit. So, I won't post two photos in a row of me doing this. If you look through my grid then you'll see there is a lot of same-y shots but there'll be different ones in between to break it up a bit!

Play around with angles - Sometimes you'll take one photo of something and it'll look perfect. But, most of the time, you'll have 25 photos of the same Starbucks red cup before you eventually choose which one looks best (despite the fact they'll all look the same to an onlooker). For me, it's usually the angle I play around with most. Do I want to take a flatlay pic of my food or would I rather just take it from where I'm sitting? Play around - but obviously don't let your food get cold first ;)

Natural light is everything - seriously! I can't stress enough how much natural light can make or break a photo. I tend to just avoid taking any photos inside, on an evening, because the lighting just looks so dull and makes your photos look a bit lack-lustre.

Find an editing tool you like - I've used VSCO cam for ages now and I like it. I usually always use the A5 filter - I've found the editing tool and the filter I like best and I've stuck with it. It took me a while, though, to realise what I did like so it's fine to just play around and see what you like best. 

See what your photo looks like in your 'grid' before posting it - Sometimes you take a banging photo and can't wait to upload it and then realise it stands out like a sore thumb from the rest of your feed. I know this is a bit nit-picky but if I see a photo on my grid that doesn't look fit - I'll delete it. So to avoid having to do this - I use VSCO cam. Once you upload a photo to VSCO to edit, it displays your images in rows of three (like on Insta) so you can see, before posting to Instagram, how your photo will fit with the rest of your grid. This has been a life saver for me, honestly! 

Be realistic with 'themes' - I really love bright, white themed accounts where literally every photo they post has a white background - but this just isn't doable for me. So there's no point in me even attempting to have a theme like this or I'd just struggle to find photos to post! I live in a rented flat with shitty magnolia walls (honestly, why do landlords choose this colour?) so white backgrounds in every shot would just be impossible to achieve. A lot of my photos are taken on the go and are just spontaneous - so a theme would just make my life hard! I do tend to use the exact same filter for every photo though and if I thought a photo looked completely out of place, I wouldn't post it.

It's all in the arrangement -  The arrangement of a photo can make all the difference. I often take a photo of my meal, whilst eating out, and then realise I've got a dirty napkin in the corner and my boyfriends hand wavering over the chips in the background - so not #goals. So take a little bit of time to rearrange your set up. I take a lot of photos whilst I'm eating/drinking out in coffee shops, bars, restaurants etc - because, let's face it, I like to eat food and drink coffee. So I always like to make sure that the dining table looks presentable first - arrange my knife and fork properly, don't have any stains on show, try not to take a bite out of my food before photographing it, etc. Dining tables can be particularly tricky when it comes to Instagram photos as your food might look divine but the table itself? Not so much. I teamed up with Furniture Market to share some more tips on getting the perfect Instagram shot at the dining table - have a read here.

Obviously, these are just some things I've found useful - but everyone's different! If everyone's Instagram grid was the same - it'd be a bit boring so my main tip is to have fun with it! Don't get caught up on taking the perfect photo - if you forget to photograph something, so what. If you photograph something and it's not the best photo you've ever taken but you want to share it anyway - go ahead!

Anyways, I hope you found at least some of this useful - let me know what your number 1 tip is for getting the perfect Instagram shot? :)

*In collaboration with Furniture Market but, as always, all words and opinions are my own!

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