I've noticed a few people commenting on and asking about the photography on my blog. I have to admit...I take a little pride in them. But that's because photography is a passion of mine. I'm am extremely lucky to have my man help me out with my photos. However, I've also spent a lot of time teaching him about how the camera works and what angles I need. He's invested a lot of time shooting my posts for me and has gotten to be quite a good photographer!
Shooting isn't all of it though. You have to edit, and post process your photos also. (Half the magic happens here). So let's get to it then. Here are some tips for getting lovely photos for your blog, for your life etc.
1. Invest your time: I love every aspect of photography. Shooting, editing, all of it. So, I don't mind really investing time. I spend a lot of time actually getting dressed (which I thoroughly enjoy), then we walk around until we find a spot that compliments the vibe we're trying to achieve, then we shoot and shoot and shoot. Shoot until you are 150% sure that you've covered the subject. I would say spend At least 15-20 minutes shooting a look or your subject. After we shoot, I spend a good chunk of time sitting in front of the computer choosing which photos to use and then working on them in photoshop before I post them.
2. Invest your brain cells: If you are a blogger, shooting is half the battle. It's worth really learning about photography and your camera. Look at other photographs. What do you love about them? Are they super contrasty? Are they busy? Minimal? What photographers do you love? Try to emulate things that turn you on about photography. Eventually you'll develop your own style. Some of my favorite photographers are Richard Avedon (this project particularly), Annie Leibovitz (uhnoduh), Gregory Crewdson and Yelena Yemchuk
3. Get a good camera and a good lens: The people that say "It's not the camera, it's the photographer"
are usually shooting with a Mark III (yeah, I said it). It really does make a tremendous difference to shoot with a good camera and a good lens. I used to shoot with a 40D and just recently upgraded to a Canon Mark II. I invested because I'm a photographer, but this lil' Canon Rebel is a rad camera you can get great results with if you don't wanna break the bank. I shoot with a 50mm for all of my blog posts. It's easy to get a shallow depth of field with a 50mm and it's a pretty compact lens. (Here is a reasonable one). A 24-70mm is my next investment.
4. Shoot in the morning or just before sunset: You can't go outside at any ole' time-o-day and expect a beautiful image with amazing light. You have to work around the light. (It's nature, it does what the ef it wants). The most fail proof times to shoot are in the early morning when the light isn't too harsh, and at "golden hour". Golden hour is about an hour before sunset. You can get some RADICAL lens flare at this time of day, and beautiful warm light.
7. Totally Rad Actions (RadLab) for Photoshop and Lightroom: This is a biggie and you can purchase it here. It's a bit pricey, but again, it was worth the investment for me. It's a huge time saver if you like different textures and effects on your photos. Tons of professional photographers use these kinds of filters. You can pick and choose your filters and adjust how strongly you want them to affect your images. You can also preview the before and after of your image.
(Daawwwwwww look at my handsome dude....)
9. Get creative with filling the frame: Just standing in the middle of the frame can be informative, but not necessarily interesting. Try filling 1/3 or 1/2 of the frame so you get some negative space. Shoot different angles, too! You can do this even if you are shooting by yourself with a tri-pod. Here's a photo I took of myself in the old days before Jonny started shooting: