Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Skill Set: Photography in Blogging

Some of Martha's Twit pics.
Like most of us involved in social media, Martha Stewart often instagrams or tweets her meals. The feedback she gets is usually pretty negative and it has nothing to do with her occasionally abrasive personality. It’s all about the quality of the photos.  (Read more at Buzzfeed).

For once, I have a bit of sympathy for Martha. Food porn has become such a thing on Instagram and Twitter. It’s all the visual glory of a food blog without the wordiness of the recipe. The images are supposed to make mouths water.  If you’re posting food pics, you’re saying, “Look at me. I’m out and I’m eating this bit of yummy deliciousness. Don’t you wish you were here?” Unfortunately, the “here” is usually some candlelit restaurant that isn’t photo friendly. Anyone whose ever set up a shot for a food blog gets that. Yet, the pressure to make quality food porn is always there. People don’t want to read your commentary about how yummy something is if the picture looks like an indistinguishable pile of brown, gray and yellow crap.

I know my photos are far from perfect. When I’m cooking, my photos are usually taken with my iPhone and right before Ash is grabbing the food because he’s starving and it’s getting cold. When we’re out, I’m constantly trying to find the right light to capture what I see and it rarely comes out right. Flash washes things out. Not using flash makes the photo too dark. Constantly traveling with Asher’s DSLR camera isn’t going to cut it. It’s not travel friendly when I want to move around the city plus he uses it for work. I can’t just chuck it into my bag and run off. I do get some help from the gabillion photo apps on my phone but sometimes, I either have to float a bad photo or let go of the sharable moment. 

All of this is to say, a brush up on photo skills is important for bloggers (unless you're the awesome photographer teaching the rest of us to do it). Whether you’re shooting your fashion choices, your food or your everyday life, good photos are important. Here (and here) are the tips that are helping me overcome my photo issues. What do you do to work on your photo skills? What tips and tricks do you use for better photos?

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