Creating content for your business can be overwhelming. It seems like every retailer has the budget to hire a professional photographer monthly, making quality content for social media feel very unattainable. Don’t let expensive budgets scare you away from creating unique content for your business though. You have the ability to generate beautiful photographs of your products right from your iPhone.
I began my career in social media management through a larger retailer and picked up many tips along the way for iPhone photography and how to make it appear as beautiful and on-brand as the stock photos we were provided. While stock imagery is easy to access and high quality, using it too often can sometimes diminish the authenticity of your brand and make it harder for your audience to connect with your content. Here are some of my tips for creating your own photos:
Choose a relatable background or set
White or plain walls are a go-to for retail photography and sometimes are just what an incredibly detailed product needs to stand out, but your audience will also want to see how your product would work in their own lives.
Start with thinking of where you would use the product you are selling. If it’s an activewear set, try taking your photos outdoors on a nature path where your customers would most likely be hitting their morning run. Maybe you’re selling kitchen goods? Get to cooking and take photos in the kitchen of your product in use!
Lighting is key
Any photographer knows that lighting is incredibly important for setting up the perfect shot. It can be even harder to play with lighting when it comes to taking photos on your iPhone. Direct light can sometimes be too harsh, but lighting that is too dim or warm can appear grainy through the iPhone camera.
This may seem funny, but my best tip is to hold your phone up and walk around the area you are photographing in. Find where the photo is clear and bright enough to pick up the colors and details of your product. I find that my favorite lighting is in the morning or late afternoon.
(Pro-tip: Hold down your screen in the camera app and wait until a little square with a sun appears on the screen. Moving the sun up and down will adjust the light settings of your iPhone camera and can help when shots are over-exposed)
Try out different angles
This is a tried and true tip for any amateur content creator. Lower angles will make the subject of your photograph appear taller, while higher angles will shrink your subject. For shots that highlight the location you are in, try backing further away from the subject and taking the photo at a lower angle. On the other hand – for more more detailed shots, try getting in close, focusing the camera and letting the iPhone blur out the background for you.
When it doubt, look for symmetry
Elevating the look of an iPhone photo can get tricky, but when it feels like you’re really stuck, seek out symmetrical subjects and photograph them from straight on. Our eyes are drawn to straight lines and symmetrical photos. This is more helpful when you’re photographing scenes or interiors with your iPhone. You can even choose to have a grid overlay your camera in settings to help make sure your photos are as straight as possible.
Play with editing
You’ve definitely heard about presets before (maybe too much from the countless influencer advertisements for them), but trust me they can be your best friend. Photo presets in the Lightroom editing app can fix countless iPhone errors. Not only will using a consistent preset help your social media channels’ aesthetics, but they will help adjust lighting and color errors that the iPhone can’t fix on its own.
And there you have it – 5 tips for creating quality content right from your iPhone. I would absolutely advise that every once in a while you invest in a photographer to elevate your social media and the credibility of your brand, but iPhone photos can easily fill in the gaps and create a more relatable feed for your customers. It doesn’t have to be hard and these tips will set you up for success in taking the best possible photos you can!