If you’ve ever done an outfit shoot with your blogger bestie or partner you know how much work goes into one – from planning your outfits, to finding the perfect location and working with natural light (before you run out of it!)

Today’s blog post is all about how you can plan for a successful and efficient shoot so that you don’t waste any time and you come away from the shoot with all the images you need.

ONE :: Make sure you have enough time set aside to shoot all your outfits.

Running out of natural light can be one of the most frustrating parts of an outfit shoot. You’ve spent hours preparing for and driving to your location and then – all of a sudden you realize you have 10 minutes left before sunset and not enough light to work with.

Make sure you know how long you need to shoot each outfit, how much time you need to change outfits and if there’s travel time between locations during your shoot.

Then work backwards from sunset if you’re shooting later in the day, or know when you want to stop shooting in the morning/afternoon. This will save you so much stress and rushing during your shoot!

TWO :: Make sure your locations all work with the direction of sunlight. This is one of the biggest factors I consider when helping bloggers choose the location for their shoots.

I always check to see what direction the location(s) are facing, then I check to see what time of day we’ll be shooting and what direction the sun faces during that time.

I know that’s a lot of factors to consider but it makes a huge difference in what direction you’ll be able to shoot and if you’ll be in direct sunlight or shade. Typically I try to avoid full sun but you can decide what type of light you like best!

THREE :: Create a shot list before your shoot that includes all types of images you want to create. This way you don’t shoot everything and then realize afterwards that you didn’t get a certain shot for a brand collaboration or for use on your blog. 

Take a few minutes to think about the outcome you want from the shoot and where these images will be used and that will save you from having to reshoot anything. Here’s a link to my in-depth blog post all about how to create a shot list. 

FOUR :: Batch at least 2-3 outfits each shoot if possible, this way you’re ahead of your posting schedule and don’t have to shoot every few days when you need another post.

The more outfits you can batch per shoot, the more images and products you’ll have ready to share. This means less time planning and driving to your shoots and more time sharing content and interacting with your followers.

FIVE :: If you’re just starting to shoot with your blogger bestie or partner I would recommend doing a few “test” shoots together. These are shoots you don’t necessarily need to post anywhere, but you can practice shooting together without any pressure.

Use these shoots to learn what it’s like to shoot with each other and also practice manual mode, working with light or whatever you want to improve.

This way when you’re actually shooting a product or brand collaboration, you don’t feel as stressed because you’ve already got a few shoots out of the way.

And of course, the more you shoot, the more you’ll learn what types of images and angles you like. Your images will only get better from there!

This shoot was with the lovely Stefany Reese of 2nd to None in Dallas!

I hope these tips are helpful in planning your next outfit shoot with your blogger bestie or partner – and if you have any questions share them below in the comments!

If you want more free blog photography tips – I’ll be sharing more next week on Instagram live EVERY DAY starting on Monday.

I’ll be sharing tips in a series called #OutfitPhotoTips and answering your questions live – I’d love to see you there!

>> I’ll be going live right here if you want to join us! <<

Megan

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I know this time of year is probably tricky when it comes to shooting your outfit photos because it’s cold – so I wanted to share a few tips on shooting inside with natural light (if you’re trying to avoid the cold like I am ;)

Most of my blogger shoots are outside so we have lots of natural light to work with – but on the occasion that we shoot inside and/or I don’t want to use my flash here are a few ways you can shoot in darker locations with only natural light:

ONE :: Find the brightest spot in the room – this is usually near windows or doors. If I can shoot backlit – where the bloggers back is towards the light – I’ll expose for her face which is the most important part of the photo. This way her face is more evenly lit vs having half of her face towards the window and half towards the dark room, which can create shadows.

My manual settings for this photo were: f/1.4, 1/100s, and ISO 1250.

Sage Weinglass of The Witty Housewife

TWO :: Shoot at a really wide aperture like f/1.2 or f/1.4 so you can let in as much light as possible & get that blurry background. Use your lens’s widest aperture (the smallest number) and that will make the image a lot brighter!

THREE :: Use a higher ISO like 1000 or 1250 – however try not to go too high or you’ll start to lose quality in your image and have more grain in your photos. If you like grain, you can always add it later in editing!

Ali Hollins Barshop of To and From Gifts

FOUR :: Sometimes you have to envision the end result of the edited photo…before you take the photo. I know that sounds weird, but sometimes I’ll take the best possible photo I can with the given lighting and even if it looks a little dark straight out of camera, I know I’ll be able to brighten or adjust the coloring in Photoshop. Yes, it’s great to get the image right in camera, but sometimes you need a little editing magic ;)

I hope these tips are helpful on your upcoming indoor shoots!

 

GIVEAWAY BELOW!

Today I’m teaming up with some amazing bloggers to giveaway a Canon Rebel Kit, Kate Spade Handbag and a Kate Spade scarf! You must complete all entries to qualify – enter below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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UPDATE :: Giveaway is closed! Congratulations to this year’s winners Kara Miller and Kari Cook!


Hey there!

Today (January 18th) is my 29th birthday and to celebrate, I’m hosting a giveaway and there will be TWO winners this year!

If you’re one of the two winners, you’ll have the choice of ONE of the following prizes:

A free shoot with me in Dallas (valued at $500) 

OR

Access to my upcoming online photography course for style bloggers: Your Style Editorials (valued at $147)

This way, even if you’re not in Dallas you can still win! ;)

WHAT DOES THE FREE SHOOT INCLUDE?

The free shoot is valued at $500 and includes:

  • Shooting at two locations of your choice in Dallas for up to 1.5 hours
  • Up to 40 edited images of your choice from our shoot

WHAT IS THE ONLINE PHOTOGRAPHY COURSE?

After shooting with hundreds of bloggers over the past five years – the #1 thing bloggers tell me they want to learn is photography. So I created a step-by-step online photography course for style bloggers who want to confidently create gorgeous images so they can engage with their audience, impress their brand partners and make more sales.

If you win and choose the course, you’ll have free access to Your Style Editorials when it launches in February 2018. Your Style Editorials will teach you how to plan, shoot and edit your outfit photos like a pro. The course includes modules with easy to follow video lessons on: how to decide what gear to use, how to master your camera’s settings, how to shoot and focus in manual mode, how to shoot in natural light, how to plan for a successful outfit shoot, how to edit your photos consistently, and more. You would also have access to the private YSE online community to get your questions answered by Megan!

HOW TO ENTER:

  1. (Mandatory) Enter your name and email in the form directly below! You’ll also be added to my free newsletter where I share photography tips for fashion & lifestyle bloggers.
  2. (Optional) Comment on this photo in my Instagram profile and let me know why you’d love to win the shoot OR access to the online photography course for bloggers.

WANT MORE CHANCES TO WIN?

After completing #1 above, you can earn additional entries by doing ANY OR ALL of the following. If you can’t see the list below, try refreshing your page.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms & Conditions: Giveaway open to bloggers, entrepreneurs and creatives. The winner(s) must be willing to shoot within a 20-mile radius of the center of Dallas. Free shoot with Megan must be redeemed no later than December 31, 2018. Contest begins Thursday, January 18, 2018 and ends Thursday, January 25, 2018 at 11:59pm CST. Winners will be notified by Saturday, January 27, 2018. Shoot or access to the online course cannot be exchanged for cash value or other services.

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  • Kathryn Delfs - Even though I don’t live in Dallas, I travel for business on a regular basis and would be happy to win a photo session with you. Fingers crossed!ReplyCancel

  • Celia @HarbourAffair - I’m primarily a wedding photographer but have been getting so many requests for fashion/lifestyle blogger shoots when people travel to my area and I’m obsessed! And I’m adding more of my own lifestyle content to the blog so the course would be just so helpful! ☺️ReplyCancel

Here are 4 ways to fix blurry or grainy blog images!

Hey there!

Today’s post was inspired by a question I received from a blogger who’s taking my free photography course.  She’s invested in a DSLR because she wanted high quality photos for when she travels. She usually shoots in auto but when she posts the images on Instagram and her blog they usually turn out blurry or grainy.

After hearing her question – I found four reasons why her photos are blurry or grainy. If you’re having this problem with your blog images – here are 4 questions you should ask so that you can start creating images that are crisp & in focus!

(I’m trying something new with this post – you can either watch or read my tips for creating crisp & clear blog photos!)

Here are four questions to ask if your blog images are blurry or grainy:

ONE :: Are you shooting in Auto or Manual focus?

If you’re shooting in Auto the images could be blurry because the camera isn’t focusing on the correct subject in the photo – it may be choosing to focus on the background which could leave the rest of your photo blurry.

I would start shooting in manual focus so you can control exactly what is in focus. You should be able to change this on the lens of your camera by switching the setting on your lens from AF to MF, and use the lens to adjust the focus!

TWO :: What file type are you shooting with on your DSLR?

You’ll either be shooting in JPG or RAW images. RAW files typically give you much higher quality images vs JPG, so if you’re using a small JPG file that could be why the images look blurry. If you have space on your camera card and computer, I would suggest switching to RAW so you have higher quality images to start with.

To switch from JPG to RAW on my Canon 5D Mark III, I go to: Menu > Quality > RAW. If you don’t see this on your camera – I would check your camera manual, or Google/Youtube your exact camera model to see where to change that setting.

THREE :: If your images are grainy – are you shooting with a high ISO?

The higher the ISO you shoot with, the more grain will be introduced into your images – which can detract from the quality of your image.

If you start using a higher ISO like 1600 or 3200 or higher that can add grain to your image and take away the quality. The higher your ISO capability on your camera, the higher you can go without introducing grain, but if you don’t have high ISO capabilities that may be why the quality is low.

My camera can go up to 25,600 ISO so I can shoot with a higher ISO without seeing grain, but I would check to see what your camera’s ISO capabilities are so you know what your limits are when it comes to grain.

FOUR :: Are you saving your image for web?

In Photoshop you can do this using Save for Web and in Lightroom you can use Export to save high quality JPG images. I like to use anywhere from 2000 – 5000p wide for Instagram so I can share higher quality images since the width doesn’t necessarily matter. Or you can size the images to fit your blog width at the highest recommend size your blog platform recommends.

I hope these four tips help you on your next fashion or lifestyle blog shoot and if you want to take your blog’s photography to the next level – you can sign up for my free photography course for bloggers called Shooting with Confidence!

This was from my recent shoot with the lovely & talented health blogger Ciara of Veiled Free!

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Get your pose on with Model Consultant De

I am so excited about today’s topic because it’s something that bloggers ask me about frequently and I think it can really help you feel more confident on your next blog shoot!

I want to introduce you to De’Ana Fierce, a Petite Model Consultant & Coach! (She is so talented, y’all.)

She’s going to be sharing posing tips you can use on your next blog shoot! She also blogs about petite modeling and provides resources to help you express your personality in your photos.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De

I also want to give a huge thank you to Riane of Stello Style who graciously modeled all of De’Ana’s tips and made our day even more fun. :)

Without further ado, here’s De’Ana!

Blogs are an avenue to express your visual creativity. Bloggers are building relationships across the globe and some are even getting the opportunity to work with major brands because of their blog.

This is why I believe bloggers are models too. If you’re a blogger, at some point you have modeled for your blog or another brand.

A model is defined by Merriam-Webster as, ‘A representation to show the construction or appearance of something.’

Therefore nine times out of ten, if you have a blog you are performing some type of modeling for your blog.

Most blogs consist of photos to give the viewers a visual take on what they are presenting. With all of this in mind you want to make sure you are doing a great job in your photos.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De

It is very important to show your personality in your photos to continue to build your blog community. Your blogging community enjoys viewing your blog because they can partake in life experiences with you.

So you want to make sure you are comfortable and confident in your blog photos.  Let’s say you’re heading to your blog shoot. You have gorgeous accessories and the latest trends in your wardrobe — but when you arrive on set, you get a brain fart.

You start asking yourself, what am I supposed to do with my hands? How do I pose for this picture? Okay, I’m just going to sit in all of my photos…but wait, how do I do that?  You simply have no idea what to do!

I know how stressful this can be so today I have 6 Posing Tips for Bloggers. These tips are easy to follow and will help you look and feel confident in your photos. Let’s get into it!

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach DeTip #1: Shoulders Down, Chin Low & Neck Elongated

Normally you will start your photo session by standing. When you are standing, you want to lower your shoulders and tilt your chin down towards the ground. These both are small movements that make a huge difference in your photographs.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De

When you are tense, your shoulders tend to inch upward which hides your neckline. By lowering your shoulders you open up your neck, which helps your neckline to appear elongated.

Keeping your chin down is a great rule of thumb to make sure your nose doesn’t stick up towards the sky, plus it keeps the viewers from seeing straight up your nose.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De

Tip #2: Hand Placement

Hands are an extension of our bodies but whenever we get in front of the camera they don’t belong. Weird, right? So to make sure you treat your hands as one when you are posing for your blog, feel free to play with accessories such as sunglasses, jewelry, purses and even your hair.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De

Gently rub your fingers through your hair and move it around a little bit. You want to appear in your natural state when you’re taking your pictures and rubbing your fingers through your hair may be an everyday activity for you. Don’t leave it out of your blog photographs.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De

Tip #3: Faux Walking

That’s right, you don’t have to take full strides in your blog photographs. When you want the photographer to capture you in the walking pose all you have to do is take one natural step forward, plant your feet and rock forward and backwards.

While doing the rocking motion you want to appear as though you’re walking, so make sure you swing your arms and stay open towards the camera.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De

Tip #4: Open to Camera When Walking

Whenever you’re walking during your shoot, don’t forget where the camera is located. You want to make sure you are open to the camera or have both shoulders visible.

This is a great way for the photographer to capture the details of your clothing. Plus, we get to see more of you in the photo as well.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De

Tip #5: Feet Placement

In most blog photos, you don’t see much of the blogger’s feet. So when you do want to capture your latest shoe game, you want to make sure the placement of your feet are correct.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De

Make sure your feet are in a straight line — you don’t want to stand with slanted feet. You can also keep one foot straight and place your other foot to the side. This helps you to show off the details of the shoes that you might not see otherwise.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach DeIf you are standing profile, you can hold your feet in place as though you are just stopped walking and took a quick pause. This pose definitely adds character to your photograph.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach DeTip #6: Seated

When you get tired of standing, you can take a seat on a nearby bench and complete your look while enjoying the breeze.

Seated postures are very good to express the type of day you’re having. Seated positions also help you to relax a tad bit more than standing. You want to make sure when you’re sitting that you don’t slump over. Keep a strong and straight back and torso.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De
You can explore different ways to bring attention to the rest of your wardrobe like gently touching your shoes and grabbing your garment.

6 Posing Tips for Bloggers from Model Coach De

Taking blog photos doesn’t have to be hard. You want your viewers to take a ride with you and enjoy the experience with you as if they’re there.

This helps build your community and gain more opportunities in the blogger world!

I hope you found these tips useful and when you have a chance to try them out, let me know what you think! I love receiving and reading your comments, so please share them with me.

You can also find more tips on my blog!”

Megan here! I truly hope these tips are helpful on your next shoot! And I’d love to know if there are any other topics you’re wanting to learn so I can bring them to you!

 

P.S. If you’re in the Dallas area (or will be visiting this summer) and are interested in shooting for your blog or business, I’d love to meet and shoot with you! You can find out more details and book a shoot with me here

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