A photo speaks a thousand words especially when uploading to social media sites like Instagram and Pinterest and also if you have a blog or you are thinking about starting one. Creating beautiful visuals will make a huge difference to the quality of your content. I’ve been blogging for just over a year now and I often get asked what camera and equipment I use so I thought I would talk you through what I use to take my photos and also my favourites apps.
iPhone 8 plus – I’m the kind of person that takes a million photo’s where ever I go, I just can’t help myself. Most of them just sit inside my phone never to be seen but I just love capturing impromptu moments. Because of this I tend to take most of my photo’s on my iphone. I’ve recently upgraded to the iPhone 8 Plus which I absolutely love. The quality of the camera is amazing and it comes with a portrait setting which my previous iPhone 6s didn’t have. This is perfect for more detailed shots and for a blurred background. The iPhone has improved so much that the quality is almost as good as a DSLR.
This photo was taken in portrait mode.
Olympus Pen E-PL8 – If you are ready to take your photography to the next level then I would throughly recommend the Olympus Pen. My Husband surprised me with mine last Christmas and I absolutely love it. It seems to be the camera of choice for most bloggers and I think that’s due to the quality of the photo’s from such a compact, stylish camera. For me one of the greatest features which I have found so useful is the remote shutter release. So by downloading the Olympus App, you can sync your phone screen to the camera screen, allowing you to use your phone as a remote, get into position and once you’re satisfied that you’ve got the best angle you can trigger the shutter release from afar. How amazing is that… who needs an Instagram husband when you’ve got an Olympus Pen… It doesn’t do any moaning about how long it takes either!!! Another great feature on the Olympus PEN is the built-in Wifi connectivity and synchronising phone App which means that it takes seconds to send a photo straight to your phone and upload to Instagram. The camera comes with the M.ZUIKO DIGITAL standard 14-42mm lens which is great when you’re first getting started with it, I’ve been using this lens for the past year and you can create a small amount of blur in the background. However if you’re wanting to up your game and get some really beautiful blur then read on.
45mm 1.8 lens – I read so many reviews about this lens, it seems to be the bloggers favourite so I popped it on my Christmas list this year and I have to say I wasn’t disappointed. This lens gives you the most beautiful depth of field and is perfect for more detailed, close up shots. The only downside is that you have to stand quite far away as this lens is extremely magnified, so this can be tricky in small spaces.
Tripod – This is essential if you want to take photo’s and videos of yourself. I use mine lots to get a more steady shot and also when creating cinemagraphs as it’s essential to get really still videos for them to work. You don’t have to spend a fortune. Something along these lines is perfect.
Photo taken using my tripod and phone as a remote.
Diffuser & Reflector kit – This is something that I’ve been thinking about getting for a while and with the strong, low winter sunshine that beams through the front of my house I decided was essential. Direct sunlight can cause strong shadows in your photos, and a diffuser can be really helpful to diffuse the harsh sunlight into soft light. On the other hand, on those dull, cloudy days, a reflector is very useful for adding more light into your blog photos. The one I ordered was £8.99 with free postage from Ebay.
Studio lighting – Natural lighting is the by far the best for shooting photos. But if you struggle on these shorter winter days to catch any daylight then artificial lighting can come in really useful. It can obviously start to get pricey when buying all this equipment so I would say lights are not essential, but not having them does leave you more restricted on the hours that you can shoot/film. Before Christmas I really struggled with trying to shoot clear photo’s as it just seemed to be dark constantly. My husband must have picked up on me moaning about it as he got me this studio light for Christmas. I’m still figuring out the exact positions to place the light and having a play around but it’s definitely a game changer on grey days.
Are you looking to take your Instagram to the next level? There are so many fabulous apps out there that can make life much easier. I’ve included my top 6 in a free download including some of my favourite apps to edit your photo’s and also which apps I use to make my stop motion videos and Cinemagraphs.