So a lot of you people who have been following us on Instagram have been asking how we take our pictures, what camera do we use and how do we post process our pictures as in which apps/softwares do we use and what exactly is it that we do on each picture that goes on our Instagram? Here is everything that we have tried and learned so far:
The Gear that we use:
So first things first. We do not have a lot of fancy (read: shit expensive) photography gear and a lot of the pictures on our Instagram are actually iphone photos. We both have iPhone 7(still shit expensive) and honestly it has an amazing camera and all you need is some post processing but we will get to that later. Most smartphones have decent cameras these days and it is pretty easy to start right there. There is really no need to invest in a DSLR if you are just starting out.
We also have a basic entry level canon EOS 1200D that we bought about 2 years ago and still use it. Honestly it is quite a decent camera for someone who is beginning to experiment with photography. We suggest you start with the very basics and use the DSLR in manual modes rather than auto because it will give you more understanding on how it actually works and how does changing one thing affect the picture.
Taking the best pictures:
This is where all the hard work comes in and for us, it is usually a process flow now. whenever we go to a new place or are out exploring and want to take some pictures, following are the steps that we always do without a fail (these have really improved our photo quality) :
- Scout for locations: while out on road trips you can generally find locations that catch your eye. Sometimes you will stumble upon a location that is perfect for taking pictures but more often than not, you gotta scout for the perfect locations. Whenever we are travelling to a new place like Jaipur, where there is a lot to see and photograph, we usually do a bit of research to check all the great places to take pictures. But if you are at a place like Goa, you could scout for locations around your hotel/Air bnb. This might sound silly, but do it. We spotted this gorgeous paddy field while scouting for locations around our Airbnb in Goa and actually went there the next morning to take some pictures.
- Lighting: We can’t possibly vouch for this more. Lighting is everything and all the people stressing about the importance of shooting during the golden hour can not be more right. The soft golden hour light makes for the best pictures and you will. catch the best sun rays during the sunrise shoot. But if you can’t get up really early and want to shoot during the day time, make sure you are not in direct sunlight( because it causes very strong shadows even on your face, which don’t look good in pictures). Also never shoot towards the light source because those pictures are then obviously going to be dull.
- Never Over Expose: Never Over expose you photos and given a choice it is better to underexpose them because over exposing the pictures destroys all the details of the picture which you could have captured in a underexposed picture. You could always go back and post process it for exposure.
- Now that we have all this figured out, there are some other basic things that you might want to keep in mind like what kind of clothes do you want to be wearing. just think about what kind of pictures you want to take and what will your backgrounds be and whether you want pops of colour or neutral tones for your clothes and pack accordingly. We usually keep it simple and add a little colour here and there.
- Shooting angles and Framing: Whenever you are taking a picture, it is always a good idea to adjust your camera a lit upwards and downwards and sideways as well and see what angle works better, because even a slight change in the angles can transform your pictures. Also think about the composition of your pictures and what all you want to capture in the frame and adjust accordingly. Don’t forget to look up ( a great tip for all the incredible forts and palaces in India). The key is to keep experimenting and getting a variety of shots from different angles. Have fun with it.
- Raw Mode: If you are shooting on a DSLR, always always shoot in Raw mode because it makes the most processing a whole lot easier and you will notice what difference this makes when you are editing the pictures.
When it comes to post processing, here are the apps/softwares that we generally use:
- Adobe Lightroom for Desktop: It is one of the best things there is for editing your photos. Lightroom is our magic and it creates such stunning pictures that we are still in awe. The desktop version is a paid thing but Lightroom for mobile app is completely free. the best thing about using Lightroom is you can create presets which are basically like filters for your pictures and this way you can just apply a preset on a new image, make some tweaks in the settings and edit the pictures in a matter of minutes. This also helps when you are wanting to work towards a more consistent looking feed. You could also crop for Instagram in Lightroom and it works brilliantly.
- Snapseed: Another app that is totally free and is amazing. Before Lightroom we were only using snapped to edit all our pictures. it works great if you want to make some minor adjustments to your pictures and we still recommend it. we Haven’t really tried VSCO ever but heard some pretty awesome things about that as well.
- Afterlight: Afterlight is a paid app but is totally worth it. It has some amazing filters as well. We really love all the warm tone filters that are there. Apart from the warm filters, we use After light for those moody looking photos with grainy/ dust or vintage effect. It works brilliantly and the vintage effect on Lightroom is my absolute favourite.
This is pretty much everything that we do for the pictures on Instagram. Let us know in the comments some of your favourite apps to edit the pictures?