The long awaited photography post is here! In this post, I share with you my Photography style and what I learned over the last two years taking blog photos.
You know those dreamy photographs we all look at and wish we could recreate them? Well, I always used them as an inspiration and over the last two years, I developed my own photography style.
Over the last months I got some questions about my pictures and how I get that dreamy background etc. and as I’m all too excited to talk about everything I discovered photography wise, it was just a matter of time until I blogged about it. Just a quick disclaimer: I am not a professional in any way. This is just what I learned and read and taught myself. So bear with me. I hope I explained everything as simple as possible.
So let’s start with my equipment. I have a DSLR to shoot all my blog photography. It’s the Sony Alpha 58 with the 35mm 1:1.8 F lens. When I first got my DSLR it came with two standard lenses the 18-50 mm & 50-200 mm. These are quite good and you can get really nice pictures with it. However, with the aperture only going down to 3.5, the background just didn’t get that blurriness. So I did a lot of reading and upgraded my lens last January to the new 35mm 1:1.8 F lens. Now I can get that depth I always wanted.
the composition of the pictures
When it comes to the pictures itself, it always depends on what I am shooting. Today I will mostly talk about product shots. It’s also the same technic I use for my food photography. But let’s get into the nitty-gritty.
Lightning is the key! Whether it’s artificial light or the sun shining through your windows always make sure your pictures are well balanced. I personally like to shoot just in front of my window or about 1 m away depending on the time of day. I don’t like the harsh light of the midday sun. The best light I get around 3 to 4 in the afternoon. Or if we have a gloomy day, I can shoot practically all day. In the picture below, I placed my products on the bed about 1m away from the window and the light is coming from behind.
Now with artificial lighting, always make sure you don’t mix warm light sources (yellow light) with cold light (blue light). I got myself a box light in the early stages of blogging. It’s a lifesaver. Especially in the winter months where you can go days without good natural lighting. I usually position my box light in front of my bed at a slight angle, turn off all other room light and start to shoot.
Well, all depending on the kind of picture you wanna shoot you need to adjust your shooting angle. For flatlays, you shot from a birdseye view. I usually stand on my bed and just hold my camera up, flip my screen and hope for the best. I mostly shoot flatlays for my Insta.
When it comes to my blog photography I usually like to take my pictures at a slight angle. This creates a more dimensional picture as you can see a lot more whats going on. Like in the picture below. I just slightly tip my camera down. This way you can see what’s in the small tub or you can see the writing of my magazine. If you go through my blog you will notice that 90 % of my pictures are taken this way.
What I would recommend it to just try out how you like the look of your pictures. Depending on what you wanna show on it or how many products you wanna feature in one photo the angle changes. For example, in my latest beauty highlights post, I wanted you to see all my fave products in one picture but I didn’t want to take a flat lay. I just took a step away, hold the camera higher and tip it just a little bit to get my shot.
depth of field and aperture
You know those blurry backgrounds, those pictures where just one thing is in focus and everything around it is unsharp? If you wanna create these type of photos, aperture is your best friend! Really simply put, aperture is the opening of the lens, a.k.a. how much light will get through when you take a picture. On your camera, it’s usually displayed as the f/number. My camera lens starts at f/1.8 and goes up to f/22. Now the next part might get a little confusing but in reality, it isn’t. Large aperture, where lots of light gets through, gets a small f/number. So f/1.8 is the largest aperture (in my case) and f/22 the smallest. And that’s all you need to know right now about the technical stuff. if you are interested and wanna know more in detail, just google it.
So to get that amazing focus on just one or two things and those blurry backgrounds, you need to go for a large aperture, a.k.a. a small f/number. I mostly shoot from f/1.8 to f/2.8. In the picture below, you’re able to see that almost only half of my bottle of perfume (peony & blush suede) is in focus. Everything else is fuzzy and out of focus.
Now, this also means I do have little depth of field. Meaning a lot of the picture isn’t in focus. If I want that depth of field. Like with a scenery picture or just when I want everything that’s in the picture especially the background be as sharp as the thing that’s nearest to my camera I just lower my aperture, increase the f/number. I usually do this with my flat lays, when I want all the details to be sharp.
ISO and shutter speed
So the next thing usually isn’t something I adjust manually. ISO is the indication of how sensitive your camera is to light. Let’s make this easier. You know when your pictures turn out a little too grainy? Well, you might wanna adjust your ISO. So usually you use a higher ISO in darker situations. But the best way to keep your images sharp is to always use an ISO as low as possible. So like I said, I usually let my camera do this on its own but when I think my pictures get too grainy, usually when I shoot in a darker room, I change to manual and adjust the ISO. Related to the ISO is the shutter speed. With a low ISO, you can shoot much quicker, your pictures need to be exposed much less (a.k.a. the time your lens “sees” the scene). Mostly it’s a fraction of a second your lens “sees” you scene before it takes the photo. I just recently got into playing around with the shutter speed. Thanks to my online course “Gloom and Glow” I’m slowly getting the hang of it. As I haven’t mastered this yet I’ll leave you with a link where you can read more about it. I usually use a slower shutter speed to capture candlelight, smoke or steam.
As this post is already getting pretty long and I don’t just wanna rush this part, my whole editing process will be covered in a new blog post. Just quickly, I always edit my photos in photoshop and just do small changes as I always try to shoot pictures I don’t have to over edit. So I hope you bare with me until I finished my editing post.
finding your own style
As you might have noticed I didn’t go into much detail on how I position each product or the exact angle I am using for my photos. It’s not that I wouldn’t want to share it with you but I am a strong believer in that each and every one of you has their own style and I wanna encourage you to find your own one. As much as it’s flattering when you copy someone’s pictures because you absolutely love them, always try to put your own spin on it. I do have a folder on my phone where I save photos I really adore and use them as my inspiration. However, if you are wondering which props I often use here is a blog post I wrote some time ago.
So there you go. That’s my post on my Photography Style. Well done for anyone who’s made it this far and it would be lovely if you left a comment on how you found this post. As always you can find me on my other social media too like Instagram / Twitter / FB and Bloglovin’, give me a follow and I’ll be forever grateful.
Have a great weekend lovelies, xx