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Instagram Photography Tips

Every day I get asked for photography tips, especially when it comes to Instagram. I am by no means a professional photographer, I just spend a lot of time doing it and as a result have managed to pick up a trick or two which I'd like to share with you all. I love Instagram. The visually engaging content of this platform in particular motivates me daily and my merry band of followers never cease to encourage me with both my blog and my every day life

I, like most of Instagram have joined the white themed band-wagon recently. There's just something about the stark brightness of a white background that really allows your subject to take center-stage in your shots. However, the simplest looking shot is often the most difficult to get right so here are my top tips for capturing that perfect Insta-shot

I am constantly researching composition. I regularly screenshot images I like on Tumblr, Pinterest and Instagram in order to recreate the layout of items, angle and lighting. This is not to say that you should directly copy someone else's photograph, there's a difference between influence and plagiarism. Keep your feed fresh with different types of shots too from simplistic close-ups to more complex flat-lays. Thinking about the placement of items within your shot as well as the angle at which you photograph them is crucial to capturing an engaging and original image that ensures people double-tap

Creating a complimentary backdrop for your subject is key. I use a marble vinyl for some shots as well as white tablecloths and sheets for others. I'm also always on the lookout for interesting tables and walls when out and about to photograph things against, no one likes a boring cup of coffee picture. If your shot is busy choose a plain background, have fun experimenting with different textures, colours and patterns that compliment the subject

Natural lighting works best for me. Many of my shots are taken on my bed or desk as both sit in front of large windows. You also need to familiarize yourself with the settings on your camera and phone in order to adjust the brightness settings, a life saver on grey days when natural light isn't on your side. Having an Instagram feed full of dark, gloomy poorly-lit images won't make people tap that little heart icon and it certainly won't encourage them to follow you. Just beware of direct sunlight as it can prove a little too harsh in most cases, especially when taking a selfie when every single imperfection will be highlighted for all to see. Avoid artificial light unless it's a lightbox, ringlight or daylight bulb


In September I purchased the Olympus Pen EPL7 camera and majorly upped my photography game. The camera allows me to capture quality images and then to easily to transfer them to my phone via WiFi for instant Instagram updates. I then purchased the accompanying 45mm lens in January which I now take 90% of my shots with as it allows me to capture a lot more detail and depth. I'm not saying that you HAVE to have a DSLR, plenty of my friends and fellow bloggers use their phones. I just personally adore my camera and it's allowed me to expand my knowledge and skills a lot further than my phone ever could have

Contrary to this being a post on Instagram tips I don't rate the Instagram filters as I dislike their tones and rarely used them. I don't really use any fancy editing tools either, I tend to rely more on the above steps to great shots and then a couple of apps on my phone to TWEAK them before posting. Snapseed is my favourite editing tool, it allows me to brighten specific areas, erase pesky dust spots and shadows and sharpen the image before it hits my Instagram profile. The handy wifi connection feature on my camera means that I often edit photographs for my blog as well as Instagram using this app. Other favourite include Instasize for creating OOTD picture from multiple angles and VSCO for ensuring all the pictures I upload match my current theme, the library option gives you the ability to replicate your Instagram layout within the app allowing you to see which photos work best for the overall appearance of your Instagram

Brightness is the number one factor in upping the quality of your photos so the first steep is to immediately tweak that as well as the contrast. Just be careful not to overdo it as that will make your images look washed out. I also dislike warm tones in my images so I usually tweak that too. Any particular points of colour-interest usually get a brush with the +Saturation brush on Snapseed to make the image pop too

Tips and Tricks
Use Blue tack to secure items in shots such as lipstick which may roll away, when placed under an item and shot from above no one will ever know it's there. Photograph cold drinks, even if it's coffee, use cold water. The steam from hot drinks will cloud your lens and ruin the shot. For really kick-ass flat-lay pictures use a ruler to align the items in your shot, creating a uniform appearance

I hope this helps, please feel free to comment with further questions below or email or tweet me. Happy snapping!

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  1. Absolutely love this and really think a lot of bloggers will appreciate the tips here! x

  2. Thanks so much for sharing these tips, I'm really trying to up my Instagram game so this has helped massively - especially researching composition, can't believe I never thought of that! xx

  3. Brilliant tips! I always use blu tack to pin things down - it's so handy. I'll definitely keep these tips in mind next time I upload a photo!

    Rachael at

  4. Great tips, thx. If you're looking for more tips at photography you should visit Auroras' website. Personally, I'm learning about exposure for last few days at


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