I love Instagram. It’s by far my most favourite social media platform. Scrolling through my Instagram feed always feels like stepping into a candy shop. I love following other travel, fashion and fitness bloggers and all their perfectly filtered photos are just the fix I need to draw on for my daily dose of inspiration.
I’m not “instafamous” by any means nor am I an amazing photographer, but I love how within a year, my number of followers have been steadily increasing every day and I’m currently past the 2k mark! Along the way, I’ve also gotten much better at capturing the “perfect photo” so I’ve decided to dedicate a post with tips on taking some great photos. Here’s some tricks I’ve learned!
Better photos = more likes, more followers! Let’s go!
1. Always take a few photos from slightly different perspectives and then go back and choose your favourite.
Sometimes, just a slight change in angle, composition or the moving objects in a photo can make all the difference.
Here, I took a bunch of consectutive photos of the surfers in the Eisbach in Munich. It works well when you can look at them afterwards and decide which one is your favourite:
I ended up choosing the third one. Using the whole image would look too busy so I chose to focus on just the surfer and cropped out the rest of the photo. I chose one of my favourite filters on VSCO Cam and viola!
2. Look for interesting shapes and vibrant colours.
Since there are millions of photos taken by people of famous monuments and places, the trick is to make yours stand out so that people will want to go to your profile and see more.
Here’s one I took when I was at the Eiffel Tower. Rather than taking a photo of the tower itself, I decided to take a picture of the view from under it, using the tower to frame the landscape.
3. Use filters, but don’t let filters use you.
The right filter can make the photo, but the wrong one can make the photo worse than the original. With filters, comes great responsibility. Therefore, choose wisely and when in doubt, use VSCO cam. Also, never over saturate your photos. They look horrible and will make your photos look gaudy and unnatural.
In this photo, the original flowers are white but the lighting makes them look a bit yellow. Try to avoid using any filters that emphasize on colours that makes the photo look dull like the filter on the right, where there isn’t enough brightness and contrast.
In this filter I chose, the brightness of the filter really brings out all the true colours of the flowers and the white looks great against the greens and reds in the photo.
4. Sometimes simplicity and minimalism is best.
Even if you love a certain photo with lots going on, remember that on Instagram, it’s all about little squares. Too much detail can make a photo look too busy.
Here’s a photo I took in Barcelona. There’s just way too much going on…
Instead I decided to focus on the palm trees…much better!
5. The right lighting is everything.
Artificial light often makes things look too yellow and dulls the image so it’s best to avoid it whenever possible. Try to always use natural lighting (sunlight) instead. In fact, photographers love the “golden hour” which is the time shortly after a sunrise or before a sunset where the light is softer and redder, basking everything in a beautiful light. Integrating your composition around sunlight can make for some really lovely and magical photos!
Here’s a photo I took where I framed the image around a sunset:
6. Finally, edit, edit, edit.
There are so many useful editing tools on Instagram, so before uploading your photo for the world to see, make sure of the little things, like making sure the photo isn’t tilted, or that the colours in the photo aren’t in need of a bit of brightening up, toning up, or sharpening up.
Most of all, have fun and experiment!