When I first started blogging, I knew absolutely nothing about blog photography, or really any photography, for that matter. I’ve always enjoyed taking pictures, and I took a course one semester in high school to fulfill my fine arts credit, but the few really good shots I’ve managed have always been due to luck and light. I’ve learned a few lessons over the past year as I blog along, and some of the tips I’ve picked up that have prettied up Renaissance Runner Girl the most have to do with the quality of my photographs. The three tools I’ve found most useful? Posts by other bloggers, taking the time to focus on the pictures as much as the words when I’m creating content, and using photo editing tools like BeFunky.
A Pop of Color
One of the BeFunky Photo Editor tools I’ve found helpful to creating blog-worthy images is the color mixer. Sometimes, if I’ve taken a photo in less than the day’s best light, the subject appears slightly washed out, or totally tinted by what I can only describe as iciness from surrounding snow in winter. Using the color mixer to warm up the subject with a gentle pop of color injects brightness into the photo as a whole without making it look fake. It warmed up this Pumpkin Poufflé just enough to make the cold November light a little less harsh.
Sharpen and Fade
I’m not the type of person who can stand around forever taking a photo from a hundred different angles. I’m working on carving out time for dedicated recipe photo shoots, but when it comes to the scenes of my daily life that fill the remainder of this blog, whether it’s running, brunching, or fun activities with family and friends, I usually snap a quick picture and move on. I’d rather enjoy the moment, and to be honest, not subject my friends and family to endless posing! That’s where the beauty of the sharpening tool comes in. If I’ve snapped a photo on the move just a little hastily, the subject can appear blurry or unfocused around the edges when the image is enlarged. The sharpen tool lends clarity in these situations, making both action shots and recipes easier on the eyes. These Paleo Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies were delicious, but it took a few tries to make them look as good as they taste.
Highlight Your Focal Point
One of the hardest things for me to pick up about food photography was the way in which many food bloggers are able to make their food the center of a photo, and truly have the background be just that. I couldn’t figure out how they did it! I then realized that, beyond the usual tricks of taking photos when the light is good and using quality props, playing with highlights and shadows can do wonders for the focus of a photo. When it comes to recipes, the food is the focal point. You want your reader’s eyes to be drawn to what you’ve spent so much time creating and cooking, and using the highlight tool to draw attention to the food, like these Cinnamon Raisin Quinoa Muffins. (It also helps if you don’t have a marble slab or other fancy backdrops and you’re using poster boards, contact paper, and your kitchen table, like me!)
Collect Your Memories
One of my newest BeFunky discoveries is the collage maker. It’s super simple to use – just upload your photos, drag and drop, and use the editing tools to make a montage of your recipes, races, or anything else. I used it to make a collage for my office wall, as well as a recipe compilation for my blog! If you’re in the mood to create your own, head over to BeFunky and get started. All the tools I’ve discussed here are totally free to use, although if you sign up for a premium account, there are more great features. I’m loving all the photo experimentation, and although I sometimes go too far, it’s a fun journey to the ultimate destination of creating great images for this little blog.
What tool do you find most useful for photography?
Biggest photography mistake you’ve made as a blogger?
Where do you draw photography inspiration from?
Disclaimer: I partnered with BeFunky to write this post. I received a premium BeFunky account, but otherwise was not compensated in any way. All opinions shared here are solely my own.
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