Friday, February 14, 2014

photo faqs, tips and tricks

People often kik me or comment on my photos as to what camera I use and how I get my photos to look nice, so I've come up with a few pointers to answer your frequently asked questions and to provide some tricks to improving your photos.

  • I take all my photos with an iPhone 5. If you have a dslr, that would be even better. 
  • I take my own photos or use a self-timer for shots of myself. Timercam allows self-timed shots on the iphone. 
  • The best photos are taken under natural sunlight. This is the most important point. With enough light entering the lens of your camera, photos will be bright and sharp. Colours also show quite true and turn out very pretty. Sharpness is really the key to a good photo. Natural sunlight also makes the anti-shake function on your phone work at its best so your photos will be of high quality.
If you want to take nice outfit layouts, here are some pointers for you:

  • Time: Make sure you have enough time on hand to spare because taking good outfit layouts may be time consuming.
  • Light: Find a spot where the sun is shining at. It shouldn't be direct sunlight but let's say if you are in your room and you find it rather bright, it is probably a good time to take pictures. From the picture above, you can see that my light source is somewhere North. It is actually coming from a big window in my room. 
  • Shadows: You are going to want to place your layout in such a way where shadows will be cast minimally. Also, when you are taking the photo, you do not want to be casting a shadow on the photo. Again, from the picture above, since the light source is north, shadows formed will be extending south. It doesn't have to be this way but it is just for your consideration. 
  • Background: I have used wooden floors for my older outfit layouts and now I use a light pink sheet as the background of my layouts. Generally, the background should be of a neutral colour and shouldn't be too striking so as not to clash with your outfit layout. Even a beige with floral bed sheet as a background can be pretty. 
  • Laying out your pieces: Take time to think about your outfit layout and then put them into picture. Creases should be ironed out and pleats of a skirt should be straightened. Lay them out like you would wear it. Make skirts and dresses look nicer by arranging the pleats so that they are evenly spread and the shape is there. Alternatively, you can try a grid form like the picture in this post. 
  • Take a few photos: Always take a few shots of your layout and view them before you keep your clothes. To do a re-take is quite a hassle so make sure you are happy with the results before moving on.
  • Done! You are now ready to post your outfit layout. 
The next two photo editing steps are optional:

  • Photoshop: I normally edit the lighting of my photos further on Photoshop. I usually just open up the Levels (Ctrl-L) and adjust the middle bar. Slide it to the left to lighten midtones and slide the bottom left bar in the second section to lighten shadows. Sometimes, I use an action filter from deviantART to filter my photos. Lastly, I add a watermark before putting it back into my phone for the next edit.
  • Filtergram: Recently, I started filtering my photos because of Filtergram from the app store. I love this app very much. They have a wider variety of filters and their light editing options are superior to other free apps. This app is pretty much all you need to perform the Photoshop option and the filtering. You can adjust the opacity of the filters and use a few for one photos. You can also add light streaks and lens flares which is super fun. 
Everything eventually comes down to personal preference. Trust your judgement and do what you like. These are after all, your photos.