In today’s mini-lesson, we will be talking about Tip #5: Enhancing Your Photo with Extra Props.
We’ve all seen perfect Instagram pics. You know, the ones where the lighting is so bright and crisp, the image quality crystal clear, all the colors just seem to pop! The picture is just so good in every possible way. There’s no way your Insta photos could ever look that good! Well, about that…
I can’t make you and your camera phone a professional photographer overnight, but I can share with you 5 super easy tips that can bring your photography game to the next level. Best of all, every tip is for the blogger on a budget, so you can get stunning photos without breaking the bank!
Let’s begin with a fun fact: Adding extra props to your photos is the funnest part of photography! Okay… so maybe that’s not a fact. But it really is the best part! I don’t know what’s more fun: thoughtfully placing props, or hunting around my house to find them!
You can use extra props to help you frame your shot or to fill “empty space” like we talked about in the last lesson. I love chaotically organized flat lays as much as I love minimalist styles! They’re so much fun to look at! It’s like an aesthetically pleasing “where’s Waldo”!
Usually I just like to sprinkle sequins around to “fill the empty space” around my planner and to add a little sparkle! Other times I’ll add cute clips, die cuts, washi tape, pens, and other smaller planner accessories.
These secondary props are almost always smaller than my main subject. When setting up your photos, make sure these secondary items don’t steal the show!
This shouldn’t be stressful, but can sometimes feel a little overwhelming if you don’t know where to start. Here’s the general process I go through when selecting props.
First, I immediately narrow my search to similar objects. By this I mean, look for stationery, office supplies, or other crafty supplies in general when photographing your planner. This isn’t an absolute rule, but it helps your photo look a little more thought-out as opposed to random things surrounding your planner.
Then think about the theme of your photo. In the photo to the left, you can see that my weekly spread is plant themed. So, I made sure to pick out planner accessories that fit the plants theme, like the succulent clips and the plant washi tape around my planner. Adding washi tape is a super-easy prop to add, especially if you use the same washi that you did in your planner! I like to create little piles of washi with 2 or 3 rolls, so that I can prop up some of the rolls to show off the washi tape without having to unroll it and stick it around the planner.
You can further narrow your theme by asking yourself deeper questions. For example, you can ask yourself what kind of mood or emotion you want the photo to convey. Do you want to create a romantic scene to compliment your Valentine’s Day spread? Or do you want to convey a luxurious vibe for your birthday week?
Finally, I consider colors. What color is my main subject? Do I want to find props of the same color, or add new complimenting colors?
By this point, I’ve got a small collection of props gathered and ready to go. Now we can finally start setting up our scene!
Just start placing props around your main subject. I start with the larger props, and place them “evenly” throughout the picture. I try to “balance” the photo out so that I don’t have a cluster of large props all in one corner, and a bunch of tiny ones everywhere else.
When you think you’ve got it, step back, grab your camera and snap a pic! Sometimes when I look at my masterpiece through the viewfinder, I find that I don’t really like the way things are placed. So I go back and adjust things as needed.
Remember, you’re supposed to be having fun! If using a lot of props is too stressful, try dialing it back a bit. Try adding one or two props, and work your way up from there. The more your practice placing props, the better you’ll get!
Do you ever use props to enhance your photography? What are some of your go-to props?
Feel free to share any questions or comments below! I’d love to hear ’em!
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That’s all for today, sweet friends! Today was technically the last day in the mini-series, but I’ve got a bonus lesson to share with you! The next lesson isn’t necessary at all, but I feel like it’s worth mentioning. So… Next time we will be talking about photo editing! Thanks for stopping by! 💖
If you reeeaallly loved my photography tips, consider buying me a cup of coffee to say thanks! ☕💕