Easy Styled Photos for your BrandIf there’s anything that can make your products, brand elements, and blog posts look better… it’s styled photos! What most people don’t know is that styled photos are relatively easy to take (all you need is an iPhone and plenty of natural light!), especially considering the world of difference they can make in your visual media. Take a look at some easy tips to take styled photos and make your images stand out:
- Use natural light! Natural light is the key to stellar photos. Sunlight will give your photo an even exposure, avoiding harsh contrast lighting. It will also help illuminate your items so the camera can catch all the details. If it’s already dark outside or you can’t find a window, it’s better to wait until you have access to natural light than to try to edit the photo.
- Look for backgrounds. Keep an eye out for textures that could make interesting photos, or backgrounds that fit the mood of your brand. Maybe there’s a fabric in your living room, a wooden-topped side table, or even a patio concrete that would make an interesting backdrop to your styled photography. Train your eye to pick out interesting textures so you’ll have plenty on hand whenever you want to snap a styled photo.
- Invent your own backgrounds. Believe it or not, it’s easy to create a mood for your photo using a background that may not actually exist… paper is your new best friend when it comes to styled shoots! Start with a fresh sheet of white cardstock (or, if you want to invest in a background color you’ll use repeatedly, purchase a white foam board).
- Look for fun add-ins. Look around your house (or office, or backyard, or local coffee shop…) for items that fit your brand style. Grab some gold paperclips from your desk, that little trinket from your shelf, a necklace that exudes your style, or even a pretty leaf from the backyard. Small details like this will add personality to your styled shoot, and can help build a picture of your brand. We recommend keeping this limited to two or three objects so the main focus of your shoot doesn’t get overwhelmed.
- Think about angles. It’s popular to shoot styled photos with items laid flat, which is generally a nice clean way to showcase your items. Even so, think about the two-dimensional composition in a flat styled shoot. Do your items look better neatly organized, or with a few objects positioned at interesting angles? Just be sure you don’t cover up any important details with overlapping objects! Sometimes, laying your items flat isn’t the best way to showcase them. Say you have a letterpressed or gold-foiled business card… you definitely want to let the light catch the details of that unique print job. Explore photography angles that let your products shine, whether that’s a flat layout or a shot with low angles for more dimension.
- Use phone tricks… Your iPhone or Android comes equipped with some useful features for making the most of your styled shoot. Our favorite is the ability to choose the focus of the photo. Tap on the area you’re trying to focus on and the phone will do the rest!
- (but not too many). We do caution you to avoid over-editing. Using all the filters at your disposal draws attention to the photo effects… not the product in the photo itself. Instead, aim for a great natural shot that won’t require much editing—your photos will look much more natural, consistent, and professional. If you do edit your photo, stay away from the preset filters. Instead, bump up the brightness a little bit on your own if needed.