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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Bradley U chapter.

Every time the weather starts getting nicer, people tend to buy new clothes and take pictures to show them off. Instagram starts looking more bright and colorful. As college students, it is hard to do this because we are on a budget, always doing homework and there are not very many places to have a cute photoshoot. Especially during quarantine, people have had limited options of places to go and have found that doing photoshoots can be a safe way to have fun. Peoria can be a small city to a lot of people with no “cute” places to take pictures. Trust me, it won’t matter where you take the pictures as long as you have good lighting and some good poses. Here are some of the top places I have seen on Bradley students’ Instagrams.

1. Main Street or Duryea Parking Deck

Even if the pictures are taken inside the parking garage or on the rooftop, it will always make for a good street-style picture. Rooftop pictures look best with bright blue skies or even a sunrise or sunset. When taking inside the parking deck, using different angles and brightening colors when editing the picture will make for a perfect photo.

Posing on parking deck. Church in background.
Original photo by Vivian Gomez

Posing inside parking deck.
Original photo by Vivian Gomez

2. Grand View Drive, Peoria Heights

The “world’s most beautiful drive” is a good place to have a pretty background in a photo with friends or on your own. There are many spots to sit and have lunch with friends or even get exercise in. I enjoy coming here for the pretty sunset and the nature around it. 

Three friends posing at Grandview Drive.
Original photo by Vivian Gomez
Scenic view of treetops and river from Grandview Drive.
Original photo by Allison Nick

3. Coffee Shops

Maybe you want to get dressed, be productive and get an Instagram picture taken. A coffee shop anywhere in town would suit you. Some of the cutest coffee shops in Peoria with a good aesthetic are Zion Coffee Bar, Thirty-Thirty Coffee Co., and Cafe Santa Rosa. In my picture, I was at Cafe Santa Rosa because they have beautiful greenery and seating. Each coffee shop has a different aesthetic, so it all depends on where you would want to take a picture and where you would want to get work done.

Coffee shop close-up with plants behind subject.
Original photo by Vivian Gomez
Seated pose at coffee shop - angled. Plant wall.
Original photo by Vivian Gomez

Vivian Gomez

Bradley U '24

I'm Vivian Gomez, a freshman at Bradley University. I am a biomedical science major with a minor in spanish. In my free time, I love reading, shopping, filming YouTube videos, and spending time with my family.
Allison is the Campus Correspondent and the Founder of the Bradley University chapter of Her Campus. She is a senior at Bradley majoring in Journalism and Social Media Marketing with a minor in Management & Leadership. In her free time she enjoys baking, hiking, or curling up on the couch with her cats.