Whether you're a fashion blogger taking outfit photos daily or a lifestyle blogger in need of stock photos, photo shoots are a huge part of maintaining a blog. If you're just starting out, the idea of stepping in front of the camera may be a bit daunting to say the least. And even if you're a seasoned blogger, I think there's always room to learn something new. I've been at this for a little over a year now and while I'm no pro, I have definitely seen improvement in my photos thanks to a few things that I've learned along the way. I hope you are able to use these tips in your next photo shoot and make it your best one yet!
1. Be prepared. This may seem obvious but preparation is absolutely necessary if you want your shoot to go off without a hitch. Every detail from the location where you'll take photos down to the smallest accessory you'll be wearing should be thought out. I start with a list on paper and then pull my outfits the night before so I know how everything looks once it's all put together. Chances are you'll be photographing multiple looks at once, so if you have everything you need ready, you won't risk leaving anything behind.
2. Practice your pose. Acting natural in front of the camera is much easier said than done, especially when you're first starting out. I don't know what it is about a little lens that makes us change our behavior, but it certainly does and can come through in your photographs. As silly as it sounds, I've overcome this by striking pose after pose in front of the mirror (while rocking out to Taylor Swift) to see what looks best and find my most flattering angle. Over time you'll learn what works best for you and it'll all come second nature. Until then, keep practicing - Taylor Swift music optional.
3. Confidence is key. They say practice makes perfect, but that won't matter if you don't have confidence to get out there and actually strike that pose in front of the camera. Even the shyest person in the world could have the fiercest pose in her back pocket, but if you read that lack of confidence on her face, it'll change the photo completely. I can wholeheartedly vouch for this because I was, and sometimes still am, that shy person. Actually, taking photos regularly has helped break me out of my shell. You have to be ready to handle whatever may come at you during your shoot, like people walking by on the sidewalk while you're mid-pose. Having the confidence to keep going and not care what they think will make all the difference.
4. Know your photographer. I know everyone can't be as lucky as I am to have my BFF be my photographer, but nonetheless you should take the time to get to know them. It'll help with your confidence too, because you won't feel like you're working with a complete stranger. My photographer and I obviously have a great relationship being that we are already friends, and that's a huge reason why my photos turn out so well. If you are going to be working with someone new, meet up for coffee before your shoot to not only discuss the vision of how you want things to go but also just to get to know a little bit more about the person behind the camera.
5. Have fun! This is my favorite tip because a photo shoot shouldn't be something you dread doing, and there's no point in taking photos if it's not fun for you! I know it's definitely what I love most about blogging. The same holds true for other blogs I read, because I'm always drawn to those where the photos look like a glimpse into the blogger's life as opposed to something forced. The more fun you have during your shoot, the more it will radiate through your photos and blog and draw in new readers. So throw on some music and do your thing, and don't forget to laugh in between all of your serious faces.
And because I couldn't contain myself to just five tips, I decided throw in a bonus one for good measure! If I had to pick the one thing that's the trickiest when it comes to photo shoots, especially those with multiple outfit changes, it's where the in world are you going to change clothes? You definitely want to consider this when planning your location. I can say that I've done everything from change in the car to walking right into a restaurant bathroom to change. Honestly, most places are pretty cool about it if you just ask! But if you find yourself out where there aren't many businesses around, a roomy backseat may be your best option. As long as you're flexible with it (literally and figuratively, space may be tight) it should be on to the next!
Photos by Haaken Reed Photography