5 Tips to Getting DIY High-Quality Photos


Jun 17, 2019

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Engagement on social media is boosted immediately when you post good photos that connect with your audience. But is that engagement bringing in the business or clients that you’re dreaming of?

Even more important than gaining engagement is setting yourself up as an EXPERT in your area of focus. Professional imagery is one way to get the vibe across to your audience that YOU are a pro, you are worth the prices you charge, and you are outstanding at what you do.

Whether you offer a product or service, we know a bad photo can take away from what you do. Dark/out of focus images don’t help you if they’re not a good representation of your product, yourself, or your service.

woman photographing a product with her phone, DIY brand photography

BUT, you can take steps to improving your photography without even hiring a professional photographer! We all use phone photos occasionally, even if just on Instagram stories, so here are some insider tips from a professional photographer (hey, that’s me!) to help you maximize even your cell phone photos:

  1. Use good lighting: I realize not everyone has a photo studio or an office with floor to ceiling windows — and it’s okay, you can still get great photos. Find a window for some natural lighting, and make sure there isn’t glare or bright patches of sunshine on your subject of the photos. Ideal distance from the window is about 3-10 feet, depending on the time of day and the size of the window. You want to be close, but not usually up against it.
  2. Compose the photo: Instead of just setting your object/person up in a spot and firing away, take a few seconds to think about it first. Are there distracting elements/clutter on the sides or anywhere within the frame of the photo? Any way you can clean up the frame a little bit so that the focus is solely on the subject (and not a trash bin or unnecessary stack of papers, etc.)? Those little details can make a huge difference!
  3. Use props wisely: We all love a good quote board or perfectly styled photo, but make sure all the props you choose are actually necessary and helpful to the photo’s purpose. You don’t NEED to have 17 perfect props in every photo to make it social media-worthy. Less is more!
  4. Use color wisely: Much like above, make sure the colors you’re choosing to include make sense and are on-brand for you! Not everything has to be exactly matching, but keep in mind how it will look paired with all the rest of your photos. It should be consistent and look like it fits with the rest if your imagery! Consistency is key.
  5. Edit lightly: There are so many apps available to help with quick edits, lighten a dark image, crop out background clutter, straighten, and more. But my personal opinion? The less editing the better when it comes to faces/skin, if there is a person in the photo. In other words, don’t facetune yourself so much that you don’t even look like the same person — that’s my personal preference, of course, but embrace your true appearance. You don’t need photo filters to look and feel beautiful. Trust me, you can (and should) show up as yourself.

Hopefully these tips help you feel more confident next time you take photos. You’ve got this!

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