This session was definitely my favourite. It was practical, funny, to the point, had visual aids and led by two very creative knowledgeable people: Carrie and Darren of Digital Bungalow.
I took notes which I will retype (make legible) in bullet form for you.
- Use natural light. Sunlight can sometimes be too bright, so tone it down by putting white paper over your windows to filter the light.
- Try to keep clutter in photos to a minimum. Darren calls it photographic vomit. Clean up the vomit and the item you’re photographing will stand out more.
- Follow the rule of thirds. When you photograph people or animals their eyes should be in focus and in one third of the shot, or along one of the lines. In landscape shots keep the horizon on the top or the bottom line. Here’s a link to more info on the Rule of Thirds for photography: http://www.silverlight.co.uk/tutorials/compose_expose/thirds.html
- Change your perspective. Take a photo from above, standing on a chair. Or kneel down and take it from below.
- Add character to the photo with items or scenery in the background, but keep that out of focus, so that the only focus is on whatever you’re photographing. The shot will be busier, but as long as the background is out of focus, it works.
- Take your time to clean up and tidy. If you’ve crocheted something don’t be tempted to immediately take the photo right there on the couch among all the yarn ends, coffee cup, toys, last night’s dinner plate. The crochet will still be there once you’ve tidied up.
- Take your time to think about the photo before snapping away.
- Rename your photos so that Google will pick it up in their images search. 324523.jpg Won’t be picked up, but blue crochet beanie.jpg will.
- Make your pictures the same width as the text column in WordPress, that way the photo will fill the column and you won’t get weird text wrapping problems (something I chose not to do in today’s post.)
Using a camera phone is absolutely fine for blog photos. Just remember the following:
- Switch on the Grid function on your iPhone. Those grids, are the lines for the rule of thirds.
- Keep your camera steady by tucking in your arms. Hold your phone in your palm like a camera and use the volume buttons as shutter buttons.
- Follow the sniper’s rule: breath out before taking the shot. It will keep the camera steady.
- Instagram is not to be used for blogs. It distorts the colours. Darren calls it The Curse of Instagram. (Needless to say, I don’t necessarily agree with this. Obviously when I’m photographing something I crocheted I want to show you the true colour so I won’t use Instagram for that, but for other things like Alpacas on a farm or a beautiful building I will post with Instagram photos).
The last very useful tip was to use Google Images reverse image search to see where else on the Internet your image appears. You click on your photo within a published post and copy that link. The go to Google Images, click on the little camera to right of the long white bar. It will expand the bar and then you paste the link and hit Enter.
I tested this with a photo from my Identity Crisis blanket post, and found 9 pages with links to Pinterest and a few other blogs where that photo appears! It’s magic.
I would also like to add a little something that I find very usefull for blog photos: www.picmonkey.com. It’s a web based, free for most of the stuff, photo editing tool. Brilliant! Give it a go.