I get asked A LOT about how I take my photos and videos and honestly up until about 6 months ago I used my phone for the most part! I had a small digital camera that I would use for my cupcake videos but even my time-lapse cake videos were on my phone.
So how did I learn how to take photos and editing and settings and blah blah blah?! I taught myself! There are SO many free tools and videos and tutorials online so you don't need to go and pay for an expensive course to learn a few basics!
My latest camera, which is a Canon T6 Rebel camera recommended by a few photographer friends because a) its a great camera to start with settings wise b) the price point isn't too terrifying at about $500 and c) I NEEDED something that was good for low lighting now that I live in the gloomiest part of the world ha!
Now, before living in the US my kitchen and work space had SO many windows so I didn't realize how lucky I was until I really had to figure out some options with only front and back windows/doors on our house here. I invested in some box lights, a ring light and an LED panel light as well as some proper color backdrops from Amazon to help with the DARKNESS, seriously Australians, count your lucky stars and all of your sunshine and bright days because they are VERY few and far between here, summer comes for about 5 minutes of the year then its back to cold.
SO for my instagram photos I have mainly used my camera and the portrait mode on iPhone was a GAME CHANGER! Cameras in phones in general have come a verrryyyyy long way and if you read a 'camera recommendation' blog 9 times out of ten a phone is recommended in the top 3 choices of what to buy and I'm not sure if you've realized this or not yet but WE ALL HAVE PHONES ALREADY ha!
Only since getting my new camera have I invested in a subscription to Lightroom because I am working with more and more big businesses who expect that consistency and professionalism in images I am supplying, but before that instagram editing always did the trick!
So get your image you want to edit and post and follow these steps:
1. GO to the EDIT section
2. Sharpen your image
3. Get rid of any shadows - I usually end up doing 100% but adjust as needed
4. I like to use minimal highlights so again just adjust as needed, don't over expose the image
5. Contrast and saturation I only move ever so slightly into the positive - again this is dependent on your image quality prior to editing
6. Now you should have an insta-worthy image to post! Little trick I've learnt as well is hold down your finger on your image and you will see the before and after when you release your finger as well, gives you a good indication of how much the photo has changed!
At the end of the day if you have access to natural (not direct sun) light this is your best option and then enhancing that with a smaller LED panel or even just a few larger sheets of white paper or a sheet to help reflect the light it will make a huge difference. While shooting yesterday I had too much natural light (first image) and had to close the soft curtains to dim that down a bit with it snowing outside it was super extra mega bright ha!
I'm always happy to chat via DM on instagram or leave your comments or questions here and I'd love to help out if I can!