If there is one word we would never want used to describe our Instagram feed, it’s the b-word.
When users are quickly scrolling through their feed, blowing past ads and their cousin’s fifth baby picture in a row, we want to present them with a vignette that captures their attention and keeps it.
But sometimes, coming up with fresh ways to showcase our brand and style the props we always have on hand can get tricky! After all, the metallic stapler, striped notebook and acrylic cups on your desk can only be rearranged so many ways.
How can we bring these same props, backgrounds and concepts to life for more interesting images? Here are five unexpected tricks and tools that will completely transform your Instagram photos!
Mastering the right lighting for your images is arguably the most difficult part of the process. You’ve heard the phrase “natural light” used everywhere, but how do you use it to achieve that soft, flattering illumination we all strive for? Here’s the trick: diffused light, or filtered sunlight. Diffused light, like we see on cloudy days, is soft and easy-on-the-eyes. And guess what? It’s easy on your pictures, too.
On bright days, when direct light is streaming through your windows, blowing out your scene and creating harsh shadows, you can create diffused light by hanging a thin piece of fabric in front of the window you’re shooting next to. Depending on how strong the light is, you could try everything from a very sheer panel to a thicker bed sheet.
Levels of Height
When you look at your impeccably styled vignette, think about how the viewer’s eye will move throughout the final image. Where does their eye land right away? Where does it go next? Are you keeping it engaged or leading it right out of the frame?
One way to control this is by using varying levels of height. By using props that vary from short to tall, you are creating an interactive scene that peaks interest. Think about your favorite food blogger’s gorgeous feed – those ceramic cake tiers and precariously stacked cookies are not just there for show!
Similarly to varying the height, The Rule of Odds is all about creating an engaging composition for the viewer. When choosing your props or subjects, always aim for a group of odd numbers rather than even. For example, choose three pairs of shoes, rather than two.
Why? Psychology! The human brain likes to organize, and once it does, it gets bored. It’s easy for us to unconsciously group even numbered pairs, but having an odd number of subjects provides us with a center object to focus on.
We know what you’re thinking – um, what? Hear us out! Have you ever created the perfect flat lay, only to realize you forgot to place one small item right in the middle? Or maybe you tried to perch a tiny basil leaf atop a bowl of spaghetti, only to drop it face down in the sauce.
Tweezers are the answer for structured flat lays and macro food shots. There’s no need to risk disturbing the entire scene to straighten out a delicate gold chain or adjust a few toppings! After all, the little details are everything when it comes to delighting the viewer.
VSCO Feed Preview
By now, you have heard about the importance of creating a cohesive feed. When a visitor stumbles upon your Instagram account, they want to determine in a few short seconds if you’re worthy of a follow. Presenting them with a consistent aesthetic is a surefire way to draw them in to see more!
Whether you base your visual identity on a particular color palette, a content theme, or a dramatic lighting style, you want to make sure each and every image you post contributes to it. With VSCO Feed Preview, you can easily see how an image will look in your feed before posting it, eliminating all doubt before you risk sharing it with your followers!