1. Take Photos on a Camera and transfer to your smartphone
So you want to improve your instagram. Ever wondered why your photos don’t have the same quality as those drool-worthy photographers’ galleries? Many photographers and instagram enthusiasts use a digital camera to capture their moments and later transfer those to their iphone to upload. For the more speccy shots of nature, landscapes and special moments I want to capture as best as possible, I’ll use my Olympus Pen E-PL7. For the quick uploads on the go, an iPhone is my preferred weapon of choice.
2. Shoot outside of the instagram app
If you do opt for the quick and easy iphone upload, be sure to perfect your craft outside of the instagram app itself. At least while you’re learning about framing, lighting and conceptualising ideas, this is a great idea to get that one perfect shot. Don’t be afraid to take 10 (or 20) shots before you get it right… it’s true what they say: practice makes perfect!
3. Good photos require planning
Just as important as practicing and perfecting your craft is another ‘P’ word to throw into the mix – planning! A great way to source inspiration for your photos is to follow people who inspire you and let their work influence you. A great read that will encourage you to source inspiration from others is ‘Steal Like an Artist’, an impressive read that discusses the line between inspiration and stealing ideas… or more or less debugs the myth. When you find inspiration through a number of sources and turn these ideas into your own, you inevitably create something unique and bring something new to the table. Plan your approach, find a niche, and create something new!
4. Link your website to your profile
A simple step to take but one that will make a huge difference (especially for step 9) is to link to your other work. If you don’t have a website, link to another social channel you use frequently – be it twitter, snapchat or youtube. Its important to show your followers that you’re active elsewhere and encourage them to follow your work on other platforms – the more you have to offer, the better!
5. Take a lot of photos but only put your best foot forward
Its easy to fall into the trap of taking too many photos (not a bad thing), but its just as easy to fall into the trap of sharing everything and anything you capture. Be sure to take plenty of photos, but only post those that you believe are your best work. Whether you’re capturing a moment or feeling, be sure to tell a story with your instagram gallery whilst never oversharing.
6. Hold Steady
As simple as it may sound, holding the camera steady can make a world of difference to your photos. Be sure to also consider framing and cropping your photos, as well as considering editing within the instagram app.
7. Have you heard of golden hour?
Even with instagram, golden hour still applies. Its that part of the day where the sun is glistening and beams through your photos to create some of the most impressive captures. Be sure to experiment with light and learn how to use it to your advantage, it’s the best (non)filter you can get!
8. Experiment with editing apps
Whether you’re shooting your photos on a camera or your smart phone, sometimes its fun to play around with colours and see what you can create by using third party editing apps. Some of my favourites include Mextures (would seriously recommend) and slow shutter if you like to experiment with moving objects.
9. Create a community
Once you’ve started to create great photos and share them with your followers, it’s a great idea to consider how you interact and engage with your community. A community often comes about when you offer your followers quality content and you soon realise that yourself and your followers have the same passion in common. Be it travel, fashion, healthy eating or anything and everything in between… its great to create a community within the instagram community and spread the love!
10. Don’t forget to have fun with it!
As helpful as I hope these tips are, the biggest and best piece of advice for improving your instagram is just to have fun with it! Instagram can be such a fun community to be a part of when you just be yourself, show people the things you love in a way you believe showcases it best. As your number of followers grow, so to does the amount of feedback – both good and bad – but so long as you’re always having fun with it, you can’t go wrong!
Over to you – whats your best tip to share with other readers!?