The Best Beginner Blog Photography Tips

Woot woot! I’m back from San Francisco in one piece (barely). I can safely say that I drank more in the last five days than I have since I graduated from college and I even broke my year and a half vegetarian streak by eating In-n-Out. Don’t hate me, because as I mention in the video “It’s so good. I hate myself”. 

Today while I finish unpacking and gearing up for an epic week of blogging,  I’m chatting with Laura from Girl in Flight and the fabulous designer behind Sophie & Rory Designs (my blog designer!). 

1. You are (almost) an astrophysicist. Whoa, smarty mcsmarty pants! Tell us what you want to be when you grown up.

Haha thanks! If only I knew what I wanted to do – some days it’s a masters and some days I just want to call my mom and dad and say, “Hey, I’ve had enough of this sciencey stuff, can I come home now?!” But when ambitious Laura takes over, I want to build satellites. But for now, I just build websites.

2. You are the ultimate multi-talented blogger – beautiful blog designs, delicious recipes, and incredible photography. What is one thing everyone must know (logistically) about taking pictures?

You know I started on a really crappy camera and only just switched over. Well, crappy by blogging standards anyway. What I learnt from that is you can take a good photo with anything – seriously, just pick it up and try it out. Look at photos other bloggers have put up that you like and try and emulate the style. But here are my top tips for any newbie blogger:

– Learn your camera settings. It is not a crime to shoot on auto, but it never hurts to know all your camera’s settings. If you don’t like reading manuals, just grab your man/best girlfriend and practice. You are bound to get a photo you love and learn along the way.
– Low aperture is your friend. If your camera can, try and get the f stop down to 1.8 (or 2.8 if you have a zoom lens) for a portrait shot with a cute blurred background. I always take portraits in front of trees, it looks so pretty! 
– Make or break rules. Some people swear by the rules – using rule of thirds, finding the absolutely right focal point etc. But take these as guides, not hard and fast rules. You never know, you could come up with something amazing! If you do love the rules, check out this post here by Sarah.
– Photoshop free trial! Yep, that one is meant to have an exclamation mark. Just by tweaking the RGB or contrast (or if your fancy, creating yourself an action) you can bring out skin tone / eyes and really make your photos pop. And when your trial runs out, you can always try GIMP, which is a little trickier but always free.

3. If there was one design thing that you think is the most valuable for bloggers, what would it be?

Stick to something you absolutely ADORE. I have had clients come to me with text book perfect answers about what they want from their blog design, but it’s not them. Research lots about what you want from your design and designer before committing to something. Chances are if I’m not right for you, someone else is and vice versa. Most designers consult for free, so take advantage of this! If you want to see what I can do for you, why not come and say hello?

4. You did my blog design. I’m in love with it. How did you learn to design blogs?

I’m glad you love it because I love it too! I started out designing my own blog – I wish you could have seen it because it was pretty cringe! Luckily I realised this pretty soon and made some changes! Sophie&Rory was born when I was looking for income to sponsor other blogs, I never expected for so many people to ask me to design their blogs for them. I still can’t get over the little thrill I get when I stumble across a blog I’ve made. With 150 made in the last three months I’m bound to come across them sometimes!

On a personal note, Laura was amazing to work with on my blog design, even after I changed my color choices 3 times, and asked for the most specific things. Plus, her custom blog designs are only $25! Go visit Sophie & Rory Design to get on her wait list or visit Laura at Girl in Flight.

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