Although I have only been blogging for over 2 years I have always enjoyed taking photos so I know quite a bit about the different cameras available and what I look for in my own camera. Photography is something I really enjoy when it comes to blogging, I love learning and trying to improve my own imagery and photography and I’m always trying new things out, sometimes they work and other times they don’t but that’s what makes it fun. There was a time I only ever used to do flatlays but now I’m trying to branch out a little bit and try new things. So today I wanted to do a post on some of my photography equipment and some bits I recommended and also show you a little behind the scenes on how I create and style my photos. Now I am by no means a professional photographer just FYI.
I started out with a Sony which I loved but I always had my heart set on the Olympus pen, yep they’re the typical blogger cliché and everyone raves about them, but do they actually live up to the hype?! and my answer would have to be yes they do. I fell in love with my Olympus Pen E-PL8, I love the design and how stylish it is, and the range of accessories you can get, the flip screen for selfies and flatlays, the wi-fi aspect for sharing on the go, the art filters and so much more! I won’t ramble on and go into loads of detail about this camera as I have a sperate post for that and about all my lenses which will be way more detailed. If you aren’t into Olympus then here’s a couple of other camera options you might want to check out – PanasonicMirrorless 12-60mm Lens Camera– for the PROS or for anyone who wants to up their photography game, this has the worlds fastest auto focus ( I do love a fast AF), which is great for on the go and fast shooting, 20.3 megapixles, 4k videos, 6k photos, this sounds like a beast of a camera and I personally love mirroless cameras and this is a micro four thirds mount which is the same as the Olympus, I personally love having a collection of different lenses and changing them up depending on what I’m going to be shooting.
I have also heard amazing things about this Panasonic Macro 30mm lens which is great for up close photography and especially beauty blogging as it’s great for getting those detailed makeup shots and swatches.
A lot of other blogger are Canon girls, there is definitely a divide with Panasonic, Canon, Sony and Olympus. And it just comes down to personal preferences to be honest but I know a lot of girls recommend the canon G7X for vlogging but prefer a DSLR for photography. Whereas I prefer a compact system camera.
But obviously I have to recommend the Olympus E-pl8 you can read more about that here although the E-PL9 will be out soon, it’s so hard to keep up with these camera launches but I’m still going to stick with the 8 as I have also just recently got the PEN F which I would say is a little bit more PRO than the standard Pen ranges. But again you can read all about that in my up coming post as well, because I will be discussing my lens collection and which ones I recommend, as I get asked this a lot! I will say though I love prime fixed lenses, so basically your feet have to do all the work because it wont zoom in and out automatically. My favourite has to be the 45mm and the 30mm macro from Olympus.
Probably the most asked question I get is where I find all my props and backdrops. I’m not one of these who keeps everything secret and I help out as many people as I can, a lot of girls ask me where all my bits are from but sometimes I actually make a lot of my stuff myself, as I do really enjoy it, if you follow me on Instagram you will see I post a lot of behind the scenes.
I recently made some wooden boards and painted them all different shades of nude pinks, as I am a little bit obsessed with nude at the moment, it’s so easy and affordable to do, and you can literally paint them whatever colour suits your style, just be warned they aren’t wipeable so if you get makeup or food on them you will have to touch up with paint, but they do the job and I actually have had so many compliments on these which is nice.
If you’re after more of a professional backdrop that can be wipeable and are a little bit more hard-wearing then I can’t recommend these girls enough, I have purchased a few from capture by Lucy and backdropsbylucy and they’re really affordable and last for ages if looked after properly.
I am all for being different and trying new things, so I like trying to be unique with my images as It’s so hard to stand out from the rest when it comes to blogging especially beauty so a lot of my backdrops I do make myself and use things that I find around places, like different coloured card and materials especially glitter card, I love how it looks in photos and I also love using editorial pictures of models and make up, I just think it gives the photo a little something extra and it also makes the products stand out, as it’s always about selling the products and advertising the brand as well as advertising/ promoting yourself and your own skills.
If you look through my photos you will see I love using props, especially flowers, leaves, ,magazines, pot plants, books and makeup!! I am always on the hunt for props and I love homesense, tk maxx, B&M, IKEA, primark and dunelm. I always find the best bits in those stores and that’s probably where most of my stuff comes from. But if you’re on a budget don’t worry, hunting down props doesn’t have to be expensive you can find and use things around the house like books, magazines, fabrics, mirrors, and even the pound shop has amazing bits, the list is endless, and I think creating and styling the image is the fun part.
Behind the scenes
This brings me onto my next subject which is how I create and style my photo.
step 1 – I gather all the products and a bunch of props I want to use for the photo, here I went with my nude pink board I made and some blush pink peonies, and some greenery with the plant and leaves, I think adding plants and flowers really make an image look clean and elegant.
The composition is so important as I obviously want the main image focus to be about my makeup and makeup bag, so I lay those items down first, I decided to go for a flatlay style photo here.
Step 2 – I place the products down and rearrange them how I like, I sometimes like my photos to be neat looking and simple, I find if you add too much then it loses the focus of what you’re actually shooting and your eyes don’t really know where to look first, I’m definitely a less is more rather than a busy looking photograph but everyone is different.
Step 3 – Adding in the props comes next, like I said I wanted this quite simple, as I already had the pink background, I added in the peonies and the plant first and liked how that looked, so I didn’t feel like I needed the leaves this time. I also love changing up the composition and angle of how I take my photos so I have a few options when it comes to editing and what I want to use, plus it’s also handy as you can use up the images for different posts especially on Instagram etc.
As you can see below I have used the same products but taken them from different angles and I think it really changes it up, as in one image you can see the different products and props more than you can in the next image. I also love blurring out the background props by selecting what I want to keep in focus.
Changing what part of the photo I want to keep in focus and the composition and angles is definitely the bit I enjoy the most, although I often have those days where nothing goes right and I hate every photo I take but there’s no rules in photography and that’s what I love the most, it is all about experimenting with photography and having fun with it. So for example playing around with different cameras, lighting, props and backgrounds. But also still letting your personal style shine through.
One tip I will give is use natural light but also invest in an artificial ring light with daylight bulbs as that will be your best friend over the winter months, again it doesn’t have to break the bank and you can find cheap ones online. I do find natural light is the best for taking photos but again depending on what you shoot, as I know portrait and fashion bloggers will again prefer different lighting.
Another tip is don’t over edit photos, that can sometimes make them look really harsh and noticeable but if that is how you enjoy doing it then don’t let me or anyone else stop you, it is all about your style after all. I personally just like adjusting the brightness/contrast and the highlights and shadows. And I use photoshop on the computer and my phone apps snapseed and facetune.
I think that is pretty much it for this post, If you have any questions then leave them for me below and I will try my best to answer them, but I have done previous photography posts on my ring lights and other equipment that you can read all about here and don’t forget to keep an eye out for my upcoming post all about my lenses.
I really hope this was helpful and you gained something from it 🙂
Thanks for reading xo
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