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10 Ways to Improve Your Instagram Photography

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

For many of you, Instagram is a place to catch up with friends and see what they are up to. You can see if they bought a new car, started a new relationship or just look at their casual (or not so casual) selfie! However, Instagram is more than just those kinds of photos. Instagram can also be used to build a following of your photography. For this article you don’t have to be a photographer and own a fancy camera. Instead I am giving you 10 different ways to get creative with your photography just by using your phone! (Or a camera if you have one.) These 10 skills can come in handy if you are traveling or you just saw a cute cat that you think is “Instagram worthy.” If you need inspiration, check out my page (below), or other peoples’ pages for ideas!

1. Look at your photo before taking it

When you go to take a photo, look at what is in front of you!  Imagine how you want your photo to turn out and make the picture happen. A little planning goes a long way when taking and creating something special for people to enjoy for years to come.

2. Angles, Angles, Angles!! The number one rule I use when I am taking photographs is to try different angles. Instead of shooting straight on, try going from a different angle. For example, if you were to take a picture of the Abraham Lincoln Monument in Washington D.C., you should try to aim for something a little more unique instead of just taking the “touristy attraction” photo. Instead try something like the photo below. Shooting from a different angle can really make a picture pop and stand out from the other 5,000+ pictures of the Lincoln Memorial.

3. Go for color and drama

Along with angles, you need color. We all know color is key in making things “pop” so why wouldn’t you have color in your photos? Whether it is the Grand Canyon or Niagara Falls, try to look for color everywhere you go. Color does make an image 100x better. However, in some cases you can also have dramatic black and white photos. Depending what you are taking a picture of, black and white can also make a photo pop.

4. Caption

A good caption is a great way to enhance the message of your photo. You can either use a quote or a song, or hey – you can make up your own to make your message more creative.

5. Lighting

Lighting is a key aspect of taking photos. For example, shooting directly at the sun is not always a good idea. This is especially true when you have a person in your photo. Shooting directly toward the sun may ruin your picture. Instead, try to take the picture in front of your subject, with the sun behind you. Doing this makes for an interesting photo that may stand out. Yes, in some cases you can take pictures with direct sunlight and still get something cool like the photo below, but you have to be careful. A good rule of thumb is to go with the flow and just accept what you get to some extent. Remember, adding a little extra sparkle is not a bad thing!

6. Hashtags

Hashtags are a good way to get your photos noticed on Instagram. Always use key terms to describe your pictures. For example, if you took a flower picture like the one below, some hashtags you would use to describe it would be: purple, flower, fall, colorful, photography etc.

7. Take a lots of photos of the same shot

Some people say that quality is better than quantity, but I believe you can have both if you really try. In my opinion, I would say taking more photos of the same subject is better because sometimes it is hard to really preview the photo while taking it. If you were to only take on picture and then you returned home and saw that it wasn’t a good photo, wouldn’t you wish you had taken more than one to choose from?


8. Review later

Again, don’t review the photos on the spot. Chances are you might miss another special moment while flipping through the photos you just took. Instead, wait until you are home or at your hotel to flip through and review your photos. The suspense is worth the wait.

9. Edit

Your photo might be perfect and you think it is Instagram worthy and that might be true, but if it is not, there is always editing software. No, you don’t need Photoshop to edit photos. Instead, use a website or app like Befunky.com!

10. Enjoy

The last tip I have for you is to enjoy the photos you have just captured and marvel at your own work because all of us are photographers to some extent. Now go post those photos to Instagram, you never know what might happen!

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Dania El-Ghazal

Scranton '18

My whole biography realistically can't fit here so