These influencer tips may be just the thing to elevate your influencer marketing career.
We all know the old adage that a picture is worth a thousand words and in today’s content-driven marketing, this has never been truer. If a blogger is serious about turning their side hustle into a career, now more than ever, the quality of their content needs to be tip-top.
Many of the most sought-after influencers hire professional photographers. This team approach to aesthetics often creates winning results that make art directors and account managers swoon and brands want to work with them again.
But, if hiring a professional photographer is out of reach, here are some influener tips to ensure you take the very best photos.
PHOTOGRAPHY TIPS FOR BLOGGERS
We asked two professional photographers for the low-down on how to take the best photographs.
Tanya Lacourse of Atlanta-based Violet Marsh Photography specializes in residential and commercial photography and portraiture. She has a keen eye for design and is a regular contributing blogger at Apartment Therapy. Lacourse recently photographed influencer Megan Elliott from LUSH to BLUSH.
Michelle Cox, of Michelle Cox Photography based in Chicago, is a wedding photographer who also works with several Windy City bloggers, like The Trendy Sparrow, Allison Howard from Bitches Who Brunch, Katherine Quigg of Engineering in Style, Allie Barke of Allie’s Fashion Alley and Olivia Rink of her eponymous blog – Olivia Rink.
Most photographers will agree that light is the most important factor to consider when taking photographs. Light is the difference between creating a gorgeous photo and a terrible one.
“Always use natural light. Turning on lights or using a flash creates multiple and competing color temperatures which muddy the image. If you use natural light only, you can white balance to that single temperature and your image will be cleaner and more crisp,” said Tanya Lacourse of Violet Marsh.
Lacourse adds that it is important to pay close attention to the direction of the light. If there are competing sources of light the image may appear flat. Think of the direction of light as actually sculpting the image you are making.
“Generally, you do not want to shoot into the source of the light because your camera will meter the light and not the rest of the composition leaving you with a very dark image that is high contrast. A good rule is to angle the shot with the light coming from one side or the other. This will add volume and dimension to what you are shooting,” said Lacourse.
Michelle Cox suggests that you take advantage of great light by taking lots of shots. While doing that, pay attention to reflections and how the light bounces off the items you are photographing.
“I like taking several different shots because even if I feel like it looks great on the camera, sometimes when you see it on the computer there might be another image that communicates a better story,” said Cox.
THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS
How many times have you looked at a photograph only to notice an undesirable detail? When you are shooting an image, take the time to pay attention to what is in the background.
“Make sure that your background does not distract viewers but is a helpful guide, pointing eyes to what you want your viewers to see,” said Cox.
Lacourse recommends once you know the main subject of your photograph, hold still and carefully look from edge to edge to see what else is in the frame of your shot.
“You want everything within the frame to be relevant and to contribute -not distract- from your main subject,” she said.
EDITING: A SKILL YOU SHOULD MASTER
First, edit in real life. Move, tweak, change, neaten and do whatever you have to do to make the shot perfect in real life. It is typically much more efficient to do this, than to spend time trying to fix things in post-production.
“Leave only the things that are physically impossible to move for post-production. Editing is determining your perspective. You can block things that seem unmovable to the image just by moving your camera left, right, up or down,” said Lacourse.
BE TRUE TO YOUR BRAND
Every decision you make contributes to the authenticity of the brand that you’re worked hard to build. Even the photographer you work with should understand your aesthetic and be aligned with your vision.
“I recommend influencers stay consistent in their choices. When you look over your blog and Instagram account, make sure that you are staying true to your photo style when choosing your next outfit, location, sponsor or even photographer,” said Cox. “It is very important to make sure that you are sending consistent messages to your audience.”
If you are bored, your audience will be bored – guaranteed. So keep experimenting. Look for ways to take your brand to the next level. Test, try new things and surprise your audience all while staying true to your brand.
“One of the great gifts of digital photography is the quick learning it affords because of the ability to view images immediately. Change the light, the position of your camera, add flash, get on the floor, look up … and keep learning,” said Lacourse.
TEAM WORK MAKES THE DREAM WORK
Whether you are working with a professional photographer or your bestie who offered to take some snaps, communication is key.
“When you are in a photo session, it is important to communicate your end goal to the photographer so that you both are on the same page. Also, collect inspirational images and share them with your photographer so that you can create something similar but totally unique,” said Cox. “I’ve noticed so many copy-cat images out there, so I love working with a blogger and creating something different.”