Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Blogging 101: Product Photography

blogging product photography tips advice

An engaging writing style and original content is what keeps me reading my favourite blogs over and over, but gorgeous imagery is what initially draws me into a blog or post. I take quite a bit of pride in my blog's appearance, and whilst it's not the most important aspect of blogging (I would 100% rather read a well written blog with bad pictures than an incoherent one with immaculate photos), your gorgeous readers deserve a bit of eye candy to feast on while reading your content. My product photography is by no means perfect, but these are the factors I constantly have in mind when taking my pictures so hopefully they will be as useful to you as they are to me.

-THE LIGHTER THE BETTER-

Good lighting will improve your picture quality, so even if you're taking pictures with your iPhone, a well lit product will look stunning. I don't have an expensive, interchangeable lenses camera but I always make sure I'm taking photos during the day in a well lit space (typically on the window sill) to ensure my pictures are getting all the light they can. If your finding this a bit difficult, increase the exposure settings on your camera to make your images come out brighter.

-DE-CLUTTER-

My favourite photos on blogs I read regularly are very clean, organised but not in the slightest boring. It's probably the inner perfectionist in me getting satisfaction from seeing a neat space, but I'm pretty sure I'm not the only person that finds that visually pleasing. I'd use props sparingly to prevent your photos from looking too messy, but at the same time not too bare. If you have a plain background, I'd keep limit yourself to a two prop maximum, and if you've got a eye-grabbing backdrop even less.

-DON'T FORGET TO SWATCH!-

There's nothing more frustrating than reading a review for a lipstick that sounds amazing and then scrolling down expecting to see a swatch...then nothing! Your pictures are there to fill your readers in on parts of the product that you can't convey through writing alone. I'd try to cover all aspects of a product when reviewing as without certain elements the jigsaw is finished with pieces missing. Keep in mind what you like to see in another person's blog posts and apply them to your own to keep your blogging game constantly improving.

-KEEP YOUR COLOURS CONSISTENT-

Something I've tried to do more recently is incorporate colours from my blog's colour scheme into my product photos. This gives a sense of brand to your blog and consistency to your readers that will make them think, "That picture is so *insert your name here*". Of course you shouldn't only blog about products that are corespondent with your blog colours, but subtle hints of your colour scheme in your photos can make the world of difference in bringing your blog brand together. 

-WORK WITH WHAT YOU'VE GOT-

The fact of the matter is we all don't have pristine white surfaces to take pictures on. Embrace your surroundings and work with them to make your product images unique and your own, just like your blog is. Every blog is individual and you shouldn't worry if your pictures aren't cookie cutter identical to other bloggers'; embrace your individuality and show it through your writing, content and of course photography.  

-FAKE IT UNTIL YOU MAKE IT-

Like I said earlier in the post, I don't have a camera that does anything particularly fancy but if your camera is missing any bells and whistles a lot of it can be produced in post production. Aside from the obvious Photoshop, there are a lot of free photo editing programmes and websites that you can access online. I personally use iPiccy but I've heard really good things about PicMonkey too. Editing allows you to make up for what your camera lacks by perfectly blurring your background, increasing exposure, boosting the colour and much more.

As I mentioned, I'm in no way a photography expert (or an expert in anything for that matter), but I just wanted to share with you some of the aspects of product photography that I keep in mind when taking my pictures!

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22 comments

  1. this post is awesome! photography is something I've been trying to improve on my blog, but the one thing that I like to do that you didn't mention is to place it next to something like a phone or in my hand just so my readers can get a size reference (especially for palettes, where you don't know how big it actually is)
    -Sisi
    Modern Beauty Girl
    Other Modern Girl

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  2. This is such a great tips post! I'll definitely be keeping some of these tips in mind when I take my next photos! Thanks for sharing! :)

    Sarah / Sarah Smiles

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  3. Very useful post! I've unfollowed so many bloggers because they don't swatch products. It's so frustrating! x

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  4. Such a helpful post! Pixlr is a brilliant, free online photo editing tool that is basically a mini photoshop - it literally does everything that PS does (give or take a few features) and also has a mobile app equivalent. I used to use it all the time :) xo

    LJLV | UK Personal Style

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  5. This was a great post! I recently got a dslr and as much as it makes things easier you still have to put the work in with editing and lighting! I always try to keep images as clean as possible, but do creative things adding props such as flowers, sequins, even bits of jewelry!

    thechinadolldiaries.blogspot.co.uk

    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

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  6. Photos are so important to keeping me engaged for beauty blogs. I don't mind so much for lifestyle type posts. Don't know why!

    Ting | www.thetingthing.com

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  7. I'm still new to blogging and I needed these tips! Thanks for sharing! x

    http://www.beyondthevelvet.blogspot.co.uk/

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  8. amazing top tips! especially the fake it till you make it

    www.bumascloset.com

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  9. Couldn't agree more with what you written. And I am glad I am not the only one faking it!

    Annabel ♥
    Mascara & Maltesers

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  10. This is such a great post! I'll be keeping these tips in mind in future, I love photography but I don't have a very good camera so end up not using most of my photos as I don't feel they are good enough. Will have to play around more with editing them until I can get them the way I want them! :)

    Love Amylou x
    www.amylous.co.uk

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  11. Really cool and useful tips!

    I definitely believe that a fancy camera doesn't guarantee beautiful pics, and vice versa. It's so much about lighting, angles, and having the feel for things :)

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  12. This is so useful! I always struggle with taking good photos for my blog, but I'll definitely use some of these tips!

    Lizzie // xBeautyMagic

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  13. Thank you for this post. Photography is something I am currently working on to improve my blog & you've included some really great tips! I've just read a post by Caitlin from Blogging Through The Mirror (http://www.throughthemirror.co.uk/2014/10/spot-difference-iphone-vs-canon-600d.html) on the use of the iPhone vs the Cannon 600D/700D which was a really interesting read & touches on some of the same things you do. I completely agree that you need to work with what you've got, in terms of both camera & surroundings. Xx

    Tania | whentaniatalks.blogspot.co.uk

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  14. This is such a helpful post :) I'm really trying to up my blog photography game at the moment. I currently use my phone (Moto G) camera and I don't think the quality is too bad, if anything it is better than my old digital camera and also easier to transfer files on. So I totally agree with people who say that while DSLR's are good you can survive with just a phone camera.

    Beth xx
    misscosmeticblogger.blogspot.co.uk

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  15. Great tips, I'm trying to find good lighting at the moment as i finish work at half 4 and i know the dark winter nights are coming by fast xx
    Love VictoriaJanex

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  16. This is one of the best Photography Tips posts I have seen! I love your tips and will definitely try some of them out! I agree so much with the lighting and clutter of photos. Great post!

    Juliana Grace | www.julianagraceblogspace.blogspot.com

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  17. I totally agree with the lipstick swatches! So frustrating!! Trying to improve the photos on my blog but I have hopes - I will get there soon enough :)

    Diana xx | http://londongirldiana.blogspot.co.uk

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  18. Great tips for photography! Very useful, thank you

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  19. Really amazing post.. I seem to struggle all the time with my photos and never know how to make them any better. I'm not a professional blogger, it's just a passion but I always struggle with my photography and I can say I've learnt a lot reading this post, thank you so much. Definitely my favourite post I've read lately xo

    wink-beauty.blogspot.com

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  20. I've been experimenting a lot with my photography, I still haven't found the perfect background to take my photos on. I couldn't agree more about the swatches. I see so many blogs go on about how much they love the colour of a product but don't even swatch it!
    Kookii || The Beauty Diary♥

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  21. This post was very helpful! I'm still trying to figure out the best angles for my photos :)

    DiscoverMe

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  22. Thanks for sharing this with us. I do a lot of blogging about product photography already, but the contents of your article have given me a lot of helpful tips on improving my images. If anyone has any other good tips for me or just wants to learn more about product photography, please visit: http://briandumas.photography/product-photography/

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