Secrets to Successful Fashion Blogging Part II

Well. It’s certainly been a long time coming, hasn’t it? When you decide one random night at 9pm to write a blog post about how to make a successful fashion blog, and the next day the post goes viral and gets featured on ELLE.com and blows up on Twitter/Facebook…it can be very intimidating trying to follow it up. I now know how directors of sequel films feel. Enormous pressure, really.

Yes, this is a sequel, but you’ll find that it’s more targeted, less random as before, and future (cross my fingers) parts will follow this focused format. For Part 2, I have decided to focus on one of the most important aspects of fashion & personal style blogging: the outfit post. Integral to the outfit post, is, of course, photography. So, I apologize if you do not take photos of your outfits for your blog – rest assured there will be many more parts to this series that will pertain to you as well!

One more thing, before we dive in…would you be ever  so kind as to acknowledge the 1 ½ years it has taken me to get to this point, this sequel, and the many, many hours it has taken for me to create this (hopefully helpful) post for you? It would absolutely, without-a-doubt, 100% make my day if you would Like this post, Tweet it to your followers (who no doubt will appreciate the tips as well) and, if you’re so inclined, you are absolutely welcome to link to this post within your own blog posts (weekly link roundups, etc). You’re the best. Thank you.

1. Always get better and better.

It should come as no surprise that the first tip (which may be the most important) is to always better yourself–but you’re already doing that, since you’re reading this, aren’t you? I find more and more that with practice, an ever-more-experienced eye, and with the help of my lovable photographer (my fiancé HB) I will edit photos and call to [houston] in the other room, “This is the best one ever!

If you always strive to better your posts, at the very least, you will not lower your blog’s quality – you can only increase it. Use comments and interactions (tweets, likes, etc) as a means of measuring the success of a post. You probably do this already, but make mental notes of the quality of the photography in this outfit post versus the previous, the inclusion of writing or any changes to how you wrote your outfit credits. If you’re a visual person like me, write the best things about your most successful outfit post on a stickie note and stick it somewhere on your wall or desk. You should always refer back to these qualities so that you never make a post that hits below the mark you’ve set for yourself.

2. Your camera is super important, but your lens even more so.

As much as it pains me to say this, since I believe that you should be able to style a spectacular blog without spending thousands of $$, when it comes to personal style & outfit posts, owning a digital SLR (single-lens-reflex) camera is super important.

It’s the type of camera that looks really intimidating, and more importantly, the lenses are interchangeable. I’ve owned a digital SLR (I’m a through-and-through Canon girl, myself) since 2003, when I started my now-defunct-yet-awardwinning photoblog in college.

Since then, I’ve upgraded a few times–I now own a Canon 7D which I am hopelessly in love with, and have collected (through saving up and through very generous special occasion gifts) a very good set of lenses.

If you want absolutely the best photos ever, invest in a Canon L-series lens–they’re the ones professionals use. I use my Canon EF 70-200mm f/4 L lens for nearly every single outfit post you’ll see on this site. I also use a lovely 60mm f/2.8 USM macro lens which I think takes very lovely outfit photos, but [houston] gripes about it not being a zoom lens, which means he has to bust his tail a little more. :)

Canon versus Nikon questions will get a very biased answer from me: I’ve always been a Canon gal. I could be considered a traitor, as my Norwegian grandfather as well as my father are Nikon men themselves, and my grandfather even has his own darkroom in his house (old school!).

But I find (as many will) that Canon sensors are warmer than Nikon, whose photos tend to come straight out of the camera a little cooler than Canon images. I find this works best for portraits and human photos, and I’d rather not color-correct every single image painstakingly. Plus, I think the focusing system is light-years better.

But that’s just me.

I also don’t recommend using the “kit lens” (the lens that sometimes comes with your digital SLR purchase) as they are usually (pardon my french) crap. Buy the body only and spend the money you save on a separate, gorgeous lens.

Links with more information about the Canon EOS 7D, EF 70-200mm f/4 L lens, 60mm f/2.8 macro lens, and 50mm f/1.8 lens (a GREAT beginner’s lens).

3. Want beautiful photos? Take them during the Golden Hour.

Ah, a secret by many a portrait/wedding/boudoir photographer. [houston] and I almost always take photos during the Golden Hour, which is the last hour to 30 minutes before the sun sets. Adjust this as needed if your horizon isn’t flat (i.e., is obscured by trees, mountains, buildings, etc–you may need to adjust your time earlier for these obstacles).

The reason it’s called the Golden Hour is that the light that hits you when the sun is nearly horizontal is universally flattering. The wavelength is longer thanks to traveling through more atmosphere, and is consequently warmer toned (also universally flattering). The light hits you square on (or nearly square on) which eliminates harsh shadows such as those you would see during midday.

Time your outfit shots to the Golden Hour. You’ll thank me later.

4. Please don’t regurgitate things we’ve all seen before.

Taking a step away from photography for a second, I’d like to make a Public Service Announcement: please don’t regurgitate content. Not your own, and not somebody elses. Nothing pains me more than visiting a blog with the same magazine editorial scans I’ve seen on other blogs that day. Do your research: if you can find it on someone else’s blog, and they are in the same niche as you (fashion/style), then you probably shouldn’t post it. Your feedback won’t be as high as if your content was original, and you probably won’t get as many shares. There are exceptions to this rule, however (read below).

The exception to this rule: I think it’s absolutely lovely when a blog digs up a fabulous 70s or even 90s editorial from a magazine that is still relevant to this day, or compares a style that is coming back on-trend, for example. I think it’s more ingenious and shows that a blogger did their homework. It’s original. I love it.

5. Hey, you: boyfriend. Fiancé. Husband. Friend. Bend your knees.

No, not in prostration. Taking photos from up-high will make a person’s face & nose look disproportionately larger than the rest of the body. It has to do with distance. The closest item to the camera will appear largest. So, the feet will look small, and as a result, the person in the photo will look short with a large face. Not really that flattering. Similarly, if the photographer were to lay on the ground and shoot up, the person’s thighs/hips would look largest and the face would look the smallest. Also not flattering.

So, have your photographer bend his/her knees slightly so that the camera is pointed level with the person’s mid-to-lower torso (about belly-button range). In this case, the person looks symmetric and proportionate all around. Brilliant!

6. The all-too amazing sun flare can do wonders for your photos.

Here’s how to get these:

Aren’t they amazing? Here’s how to get them:

  • Switch your camera to Manual or Aperture-Priority mode (I almost universally shoot in Aperture-Priority mode) and set the aperture to as wide as you typically do (usually around f/4 is best)
  • Angle your camera to face the sun, and align your subject so that the person is almost, very nearly, but not quite covering up the sun (of course, they can be far away and the effect will still work, but I tend to like this better since it also accomplishes Tip #7 below)
  • Compensate up for exposure. Since your camera will be letting in the sun’s light directly, it will compensate by making your subject just a dark silhouette, unless you are in manual or another semi-manual mode (like aperture-priority). In your camera’s settings, dial up the exposure compensation until you can take photos of the subject with them still adequately lit. This will key out (white out) some of the sky a bit, but it is expected. Usually you need to adjust your exposure compensation to make it at least 1, 1 ¹/3, or even 2 exposure brackets higher.

 

7. Use the sun to highlight your hair. This is called a “key light”. It’s free.

Pretty self-explanatory. Angle yourself, especially during the Golden Hour (above), so that the sun hits on the back of your hair, at an angle. It highlights you and sets you apart from the background, leaving the focus on you and what you’re wearing, not the distracting orange traffic cone behind you (true story).

8. Think: Paris Fashion Week. You (and your outfit) stand apart when you stand apart from other things.

Also self explanatory, but sadly often overlooked. Take in your surroundings before you start shooting. Find a sidewalk, a road, a path, or other element with bland but repeating surroundings–they will act as a natural “frame” to you, the subject.

If you stand with your back facing the farthest away object, your background will be that much blurrier (called “bokeh”), which helps you stand apart. A good bokeh, in my opinion, is the be all end all secret to amazing outfit photos. Note, some lenses have better bokeh than others, and usually they are the most expensive (since they have better and more numerous lens elements which contribute to this effect). But even cheapie lenses (the 50mm f/1.8 by Canon is a great example) can achieve this effect marvelously. You’ll just have to do your research to find out which ones these are. Troll photography forums and ask them questions to find out their opinions.

9. Ah, the aperture. The key to the camera that lets in light.

I won’t go into the specifics of exactly what an aperture is (you can read this to find out the basics) but I will say that the wider the aperture, the lower the number (f/4 is wider than f/16, for example) and the wider the aperture (or the lower the number) the more light is let in. The more light is let in, the more the camera will focus exclusively on what is in focus, and less on anything else. So, if you want your subject to have blurred backgrounds (and sometimes foregrounds), use a wider aperture (like f/4). If you want the subject and all of its surroundings to be in focus, use a smaller aperture (like f/16). It’s confusing, I know, what with the up-down nature of the inverse relationship between diameter and aperture setting, but it gets more intuitive. If [houston] can figure it out, you can too.

For example, the below photo was taken on a point-and-shoot, which used a very narrow (probably f/11 or so) aperture. See how I’m in focus, but so are all the people behind me? Ew. Distracting. Narrow apertures are a pet peeve of mine.

And look how much better it looks when your aperture is nice and wide (f/4, again) creating a dreamy backdrop:

Caveat alert: It is possible to have your aperture too wide. As a rule, I recommend that any aperture wider (lower) than f/3.5 may be a little too wide. Why? Because you could end up with a scenario where your nose is in focus but your eyes are not (that’s how narrow the range of focus can be with an aperture that wide, crazy!).

10. Why go through all this hard work and not show off your photos?

I bring you the last tip of Part 2: maximize your photo size. Your photos should always be the same width as your content’s column. For example, my blog layout has always used a content column that is 600px wide. As such, I resize my photos to 600px wide, regardless of the orientation (portrait or landscape). You went through all that hard work to take your photos, why not show them off? I nearly weep tears of sadness when I see beautiful photos on a blog and find them to be 50% of the width of their actual column. Sadness.

Show them off! Be proud! And don’t make your photos super huge and then resize them within your blog post editor! That means we download a high-res photo and the browser squeezes it down to size: it not only looks bad, but we’ll probably be long gone (hitting the “back” button) before the photo has a chance to load completely. Double sadness.

Please take a moment & be social with this post. xoxo

There you have it. I hope you enjoyed this second part to the Secrets to Successful Fashion Blogging series, and please note that there will be much more to come! If you liked this post, please do me the honor of liking & tweeting it out to your followers – they will no doubt appreciate the wisdom (if there’s any to be found here, that is). Thank you so much!

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  • http://initfortheloveblog.blogspot.com/ samantha

    YAY! I just skim read this and am going to sit down with a coffee and have a proper read. Thanks for sharing x

    • http://initfortheloveblog.blogspot.com/ samantha

      Ok so have read it properly now and it has such good tips! I am buying a DSLR in Feb and can’t wait for quality images; I will be back to this post for all the great tips. x

  • http://fingertipfashion.wordpress.com Vidhya

    damn .. i just bought a DSLR with kit lens.. but the rest of the tips are wonderful!

    • http://linenfinish.blogspot.com Elizabeth

      It’s ok! Kit lenses aren’t all bad–while they might not be as versatile as other lenses, they still offer quite a range of uses. Most kit lenses have aperture numbers on the low end around 3.5-4.5. The key to getting that “dreamy” blurred background with a kit lens is to zoom all the way out, set the aperture the lowest you can, and have your photographer get really close to you. Reeeallly close, so you fill the shot like you would from further away if zoom was involved. You’ll still snag a great short depth of field that way. I once shot a wedding using a lens that had an aperture of 2.8, but no zoom whatsoever. Talk about getting personal. :)

  • http://madaboutculture.com Asia

    THANK YOU so much for this Kristina this is amazing advice and I always admire your photos!! I still have to develop a comfort level in front of the camera but I am learning more and more about photography everyday so that I can maximize the potential of my blog. These tips are very helpful, especially all of the photography stuff.

  • http://www.lefashionmonster.com deniz

    Excellent post! I’ve been working on my images lately, but waiting for a new layout, so hopefully that will be finished soon! Thanks for your lighting tips!

  • http://fiercefabulousfit.com Krystle {Fierce|Fabulous|Fit}

    WOW!! I have a lot to learn with my photos! I guess partly because I take them myself with a timer… thank you for sharing this, Kristina!! And for all of your hard work!! I know it will pay off and I will be tweeting your post tomorrow. :)

  • http://thesparkle.net erin

    it is so incredibly generous of you to do this series! it’s been eye opening to me. these tips are above and beyond! thank you very much, x

  • http://keepcalmandcarrylipstick.blogspot.com Sarah

    Such amazing tips! Thanks so much for writing this, you have no idea how helpful it is. You’re awesome!

  • http://www.glamourhauz.com DeNeidra H

    Hey !! Thanks for the knowledge. I’m in need of a high quality camera and I’ve done lots of research on the best type of cameras. There are so many !! Your perspective as a photographers and blogger is like a insiders trade secret in regards to importance of features and the lenses. I can’t wait to try these new tips !!

  • http://www.notquiteglam.com Ashley Mag

    I just started my personal style blog this past fall so I’m still a newbie and I must say that I love PSS and this series! Your tips are so helpful, thanks :-)

  • http://www.pushupswithpolish.com Em {pushups with polish}

    god i love this! thanks for sharing and helping us all out! i will definitely pin this :) xxo em

  • http://www.stylescoop.co.za StyleScoop

    Great post! Thanks for all the tips :)

  • http://blog.thekinas.com Bettina

    Great job! Being pretty new to the whole blogging world I truly found these tips invaluable and have pinned to my boards for future reference!

  • http://fashionfractions.com/ Neris

    I LOVED this Kristina! Thanks so much for the hard work and sharing it with us :) I seriously can’t wait for the more series to come, as I always learn so much from your advices!

    Much love from Croatia!

    xxx,

    Fashion Fractions

  • http://lifestyleflash.com Becky at [ life/style/flash. ]

    This is so fantastic and so worth the wait!

    Thank you so much for sharing all of these tips Kristina.

    I especially love number 10 because it reassures me that I’m doing the right thing! (I maximise my photos and I find it makes my blog look so much more professional.)

  • http://www.gritandglamour.com GRIT & GLAMOUR

    AMAZING. Of course! Sharing, tweeting, pronto. I also added a special section here, cause you’re just so damn good! http://www.gritandglamour.com/build-a-better-blog/

  • http://stylecookbook.blogspot.com Simone

    Great post. Thank you for writing this. I shared this post with my readers on my FB page.

    Have a nice day.

  • http://www.mispapelicos.com SACRAMENTO

    Absolutely brilliant and so helpful.
    Thank you sooooooooooo much.
    I will be passing it on.
    Besos
    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

  • http://www.thingsthatmakemesmiledaily.blogspot.com Annie

    I just learnt so much about photography! Thank you so much!! All amazing tips for bloggers x

  • http://www.pennypincherfashion.com Penny Pincher Fashion

    These are such great tips – thank you for sharing! We just got our DSLR right before Christmas & are still learning all the settings & trying to figure out which lens to buy, so this helps alot…going to forward it onto my hubby so he can read now too! :)

  • http://kulturundstil.blogspot.com Anita

    thanks so much – these are great tips!
    xxx Anita

  • http://styladelica.com/ Jess at Styladelica

    A great follow up post. This has inspired me to get on a photography course and learn how to use me SLR properly.

    I find it really challenging to take pics in the ‘golden hour’ at the moment as I work 9-5 Mon-Fri and don’t have anyone at work to take my photos but will make sure I do this at the weekend.

    Can’t wait to put all of this new information into practice!

    Jess xx

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  • http://www.circafashion.com cca.

    Great advice. I dont do outfit post. But anyone taking pics can use this info. You just made everything so easy. Thank you!

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  • http://fashionpearlsofwisdom.co.uk/ Pearl Westwood

    These are such useful photography tips, honestly the hardest thing about fashion blogging is getting good photos. Well actually it is realising how important having good photography is! Since buying my DSLR I can’t tell you how much more easier my life is than with a point and click and I am also enjoying learning about photography too!! As a fashion blogger and writer the ‘text’ content and the styling up of the outfits always came first. As I was the one in the photo’s I didn’t really concern myself with taking the photos – it was just hand my little camera to the nearest person to take a snap and pot luck to the quality of it! I first realised the marvel of photography when I was handed a DSLR to take some photos of a blogger friend and I finally saw the light! I think my blog is so much more enjoyable to read too, from reader comments they really appreciate the extra effort.

  • http://misscrystalmakeup.blogspot.com Crystal

    This was very helpful, thank you! I knew some of the info but not all and it will be very usefull. My blog isn’t all fashion but I do outfit posts sometimes. Translating this good info to my hubby (the photographer) is another thing, lol. Thanks again for taking the time to do this!
    xo~Crystal

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  • http://crinkleyourcloset.blogspot.com Rachel Tatem

    Thanks for the tips!

  • http://www.TheFashionableESQ.blogspot.com Netty

    I don’t even know what to say about this! This was incredibly useful & helpful. I’m committing it to memory and making my VP/Photographer/Boyfriend memorize it as well! I want to be your bestie. Is the 60mm f/2.8 USM macro lens only for closeups because it’s macro? I have a very limited photography knowledge base & thought macro was primarily for closeup/detail shots, but I am looking to upgrade from my current lens.

    Thank you!

    • http://prettyshinysparkly.com Kristina

      Hey Netty – the macro lens means it’s great for macro, since it has a REALLY wide aperture, f/2.8, but it takes any photos you want – however it is not a telephoto lens, which means you always shoot at 60, so you have to move your body closer to zoom in, etc. I hope that makes sense. For not being an L lens, it is AMAZING and has fantastic bokeh.

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  • http://www.thecitizenrosebud.com Bella Q, The Citizen Rosebud

    GREAT GREAT GREAT! Wonderful tips, finely said. Photography is so important to outfit posts and already I feel the need to upgrade my camera lens (I too am a Canon girl). AND you just validated my insistence of posting large pictures because the blog I like to look at were large I made mine the same but some of my pals go small, and the feedback was large made me seem like I had a big ego- no matter the photos are easier to enjoy large, you said it and I’m quoting it! GREAT post, great series- looking forward to the next one!

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  • http://www.lemonsandloafers.com Julia @ Lemons and Loafers

    This is wonderful and so helpful as always. I love that you share your secrets with us all, it’s so generous and thoughtful!

  • http://mystyleloft.com MyStyleLoft

    this is so great! thank you for sharing! xx

  • http://www.zealousblonde.blogspot.com FaithJ

    All of this was very helpful! I learned a lot, these are the best tips I’ve ever read. (Even though I will NOT be buying a SLR camera!) I didn’t know about the Golden Hour or standing with your back to the farthest object.

    Do you have any tips for posing? It seems the girls with the most successful blogs have a talent for posing *just so*, but all I can do is smile and face the camera head-on, everything else looks awkward when I do it!

    I’ve also found on my Blogger blog, that uploading my photos to Flickr first and copying the link allows my photos to be bigger, rather than uploading them right into the Blogger interface.

    Thanks again!

  • http://www.doyouspeakgossip.com/ Call me M @ DoYouSpeakGossip?

    Your post couldn’t have come in a better time! I really enjoyed reading this and learned lots of interesting stuff, that I’m planning to practice and use in the future. Thank you so much for making this post. I’m looking forward to your next part of these series.

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  • http://shoeschampagne.blogspot.com Tiffany Elam

    These are great tips. Thanks for sharing!!

    Tiffany
    http://shoeschampagne.blogspot.com

  • http://www.littlegirlbigworld.com Ashleigh

    Yay! This is amaaaazing & you’re amazing for sharing your knowledge & experience – thank you!!

  • http://mrkanerule.blogspot.com Mr kane

    Love it! so Helpfull!!!
    Amazing Blog!

    Hugs

  • http://www.featherfactor.com Katherine

    This was such an amazing post! I read Part One when I first started blogging and so appreciate the time you’ve put into this, especially the step by step for “golden hour” – thank you!

  • http://myturn-evelyn.blogspot.com/ Evelyn

    Love your blog. I have just started to blog and love it! I am not an expert on fashion (that’s why I read your blog, I need the help). But not only do I learn about fashion for my personal benefit, I am learning ever so much about blogging, cameras, and to just be myself:)

  • http://www.theonlinestylist.co.uk Amanda @ The Online Stylist

    Kristina this is brilliant – thanks so much! I read your first post in the series and found it so helpful. I always love your outfit pictures and try very hard to use good quality shots on my blog. I’m saving this article for Mr OLS to read as he takes my photos and is a very keen photographer so will know exactly what you’re talking about! Look forward to more posts! xx

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  • http://www.justtututiny.blogspot.com Thu

    Great info! I am a newbie when it comes to blogging but I do agree that having a great camera and camera person is so important. I am very lucky to have a patient photographer so now I just need to invest in a good camera. Mines is so so and doesn’t focus very well but those nice lens are so expensive. Maybe once my blog picks up I can invest in something better!

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  • http://www.styleisalwaysfashionable.blogspot.com Kate

    This is amazing! Such a brilliant guide!

  • http://www.thedailysophisticate.com Sarah

    Thanks for the helpful tips, Kristina! I have a Nikon but I’m learning that I probably need to get an even better camera (and lense) to get what I want from my photos.

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  • Jess

    Thank you for doing this. And the one before it. You are truly an inspiration. And amazing guide.

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  • http://www.besttrendz.com/ Lauren (BestTrendz)

    Wonderful tips! Especially the aperture ones- they’ll definitely be helpful once I get that new camera. Thank you for putting this together!

  • http://sprinklesinsprings.com Kara

    What a great follow-up! I do a lot of these tips already, but I never thought that your aperture could be too wide. I’ve been having focusing problems lately, so I’m going to change my normal setting and see if that fixes the problem. Thanks so much Kristina!!
    xx Kara
    Sprinkles in Springs

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  • http://followinmyfabulousness.blogspot.com Jasmine

    Very helpful! Lots of tips I will keep in mind!

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  • http://styleofsam.blogspot.com/ Samantha

    Kristina!

    Thank you so much for Part II! It was Part I that inspired me to make my blog better! I cannot thank you enough! This is definitely tweet worthy material! :)

    xo, sam

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  • http://www.thedapperbun.com Mary Ann

    Thanks for this wonderful info, Kristina! I’ve been experimenting with my dSLR for about 6 months now and I have the Canon 50mm 1.8 lens. I’ve been able to discover a lot of these tips on my own, but I was unsure about the sun flares and I think my aperture may be a bit too wide, ha! ;-)

    • http://prettyshinysparkly.com Kristina

      Don’t you love the 50mm 1.8? I have it too! The 1.8 is definitely one of those apertures that will have the tip of your nose in focus, but not your eyes–that’s how shallow the DoF (depth-of-field) is with really wide apertures. I would recommend 3.5-4 for outfit photos on that lens! Such a great little lens, one of my favorites!

  • http://davinadonkor.blogspot.com Davina Donkor

    These are such great tips! I am going to read this more in depth once i have free time. thanks for sharing :)

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  • http://www.rachelslookbook.com Rachel

    Thanks for sharing Kristina, this is amazing and I can’t imagine all the time and effort you put into making this happen!!!!! I definitely need to invest in a better camera and I love the tips about taking pictures with the sun! I shared this via Pinterest!!!! (my new time-consuming habit :) )

    • http://prettyshinysparkly.com Kristina

      Aw thank you so much for sharing, Rachel. :) I adore pinterest, it has seriously changed the way I plan my wedding–so much inspiration to take in!!

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  • http://www.NajaDiamond.com Naja Diamond

    Seriously sooooo helpful!! I have been dying trying to figure out how to take the best pics and this helps a ton! Thanks so much, keep being AMAZING!
    xoxo,
    NajaDiamond

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  • http://itgirlallure.com Sheila@ itgirlallure.com

    Great post with super helpful information!!!

    Smooches!
    Sheila

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  • http://beescloset.wordpress.com Brooke Searcy

    THIS WILL BE SO HELPFUL!!!!
    I have actually two blogs I started an outfit blog because my roommate thought it would be fun and it has been a hit I just need some help with some little details and such. But I have another blog that I also talk about fashion so this will help me tremendously.
    Thank you so much for taking the time to write this post.
    Now I need to go find your first one!
    Brooke

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  • http://AngeleStyle Barbara Angele

    I just started a fashion blog and have never had a computer class and have never used a camera. I keep looking for classes in Portland Oregon that could help me and have no idea if I should start with photography classes or a web design class? In the mean time I have just been blogging every day with the design I set up from following the Blogger directions. I feel like there is so much I do not know and have no idea where to turn. Your Part I and II have been EXTREMELY helpful. Do you think I should BEGIN with a photography class to learn how to use a DSLR when I get one or do you think I should sign up for a web design class or do you think I should start over and take a WordPress class that is available in Portland. I did learn how to insert photos but very elementary click and drag type thing and when I take practice pictures with my little Sony camera and put the disk into my computer I have no idea how to sort them out, edit, file, etc. and get them sorted out to insert into my blog from the disk. What kind of class do you think I need? Thank you so much for sharing your expertise.

    • http://prettyshinysparkly.com Kristina

      I think you should definitely learn to do both if doing both well are goals for you. I would always focus on great content and if you take lots of outfit photos then photography may be the thing to learn first. You can always hire someone to make a starter web design for you until you are able to learn web design yourself. Mastering photography is an invaluable skill, and one that will serve you well even outside the world of fashion blogs. But I think you should do both, eventually! :)

  • http://plainerjane.wordpress.com Jane @ PlainerJane

    Great tips! I really appreciate your interest and effort in helping us newbie bloggers with our own projects–keep up the amazingness!

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  • http://www.cheetahisthenewblack.com Alicia

    Wow, this is quite the handbook for us fashion bloggers. Such great photography tips, I’m definitely taking note and also went back to re-read your first Secrets to Successful Fashion Blogging as well!

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  • http://www.cocobellephotography.com Ashley A

    Love! I actually shared your website today to my readers for your outfit page. When I came to your site you had this amazing post. Love your site, keep it up :)

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  • http://poorlittleitgirl.com Cathy, your Poor Little It Girl

    I love all of your tips!! I’ve recently started doing outfit posts on my blog (that focuses on Under $100 fashion) and there are things I’ve never even thought about! Thanks for spelling it out for us newbies!

    xoxo
    Cathy, your Poor Little It Girl

  • http://www.ladyofashion.co.uk FASHION TALES

    Brilliant post! So helpful, and have definitely bookmarked. Thanks … love this beautiful blog! -xo

  • http://www.becauseshannasaidso.blogspot.com Shanna Schneider

    WOW! You are my blogger idol and a ROCK STAR! This post is amazing. Thanks for taking so much time in making it so detailed and helpful. i can only hope to be as successful as you are in the blogging world! Cheers!
    xo,
    shanna

  • http://bunbunmakeuptips.com Bun Bun Makeup Tips

    I love all the photography tips! I’m using a point and shoot Panasonic LX3 but I’m hoping to upgrade to a DSLR one day. Two things stopping me are the weight and bulkiness of the camera. =(

  • http://www.bittyandbunny.blogspot.com kym

    i just read through this entire post and i have to sincerely thank you for taking the time to write such thoughtful and thorough tips. i never knew how to get that unfocused background, relying only on chance for it to occasionally happen. i’m going to mess around with the aperture setting on my {ahem} nikon right now!
    xo
    kym

  • http://www.gawgusthings.com GawgusThings

    This is wonderful – I love all the photography tips, especially the one about shooting mid torso. Will definitely give this a go (or rather the Better Half will when he next takes some outfit shots for me!). Yes, he will very much enjoy reading this too! Thank you so much :)

    Emma xx

  • http://www.pearlsandpeacocks.com Kanae

    Hi,

    This was very helpful. I am trying to get into photography for my site. I hope to one day take amazing photos like you.

    I cant wait for your next post.

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  • http://www.wonderfulandmarvelous.tumblr.com Andrea

    Thanks for this post it’s so helpful!! Can’t wait to go home and get my camera out!!
    xoxo
    Andrea
    Wonderful and Marvelous

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  • http://www.faerlmarie.blogspot.com Faerl Marie

    Kristina,

    Thank you so much for the follow up to part one and congrats on your acclaim!! Hopefully, this post will be as widespread as the original (I’ll do my part).

    I have admired your photos from the get-go so reading how you do it was very helpful. I’m saving up for a good camera and now I know what to buy with all my pennies.
    Warmly,

    Faerl Marie

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  • http://seekingstyleblog.wordpress.com Jennifer

    Great tutorial!! I look forward to more and now I must go back and read the first one!

    xo jennifer

    http://seekingstyleblog.wordpress.com

  • http://wearingheels.wordpress.com Elizabeth

    Wonderful tips! I absolutely love your blog. Keep up the awesome work.

  • http://www.aheartandsoulstory.blogspot.com Anja

    Wow, this was so helpful. Some of those tips are really obvious, but sometimes you just forget it. Like the width of horizontal pictures. I have to definitely work on that. Also some of the tips with lighting and camera settings will be of great use in the future. I do agree to those lenses you mentioned, though I would rather select the 50mm f/1.4 instead of the f/1.8 by Canon as for a small price difference the lense has a much higher quality! Thx so much for this post, it really will be on my favorite list for a long time!!

  • http://www.iloveagood.com Danielle

    This was a really great post. Pics taken from below rather than same level is reeally soo true and such an easy thing to do!

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  • http://www.10thirteen.com Leslie

    Kristina,

    First thank you so much for this post! I was considering getting a DSLR along with the 50mm 1.8 lens and this convinced me to bite the bullet and go for it. I take my own outfit posts with a tripod and have trouble with me being blurry sometimes with this lens? Do you have any tips for this problem!? Thanks again, and I love your blog!

    -Leslie

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  • http://nochicsherlock.blogspot.com/ No chic, Sherlock

    wow! I am always mezmerized by tutorial post about blogging/photography. I suck a bit on photography part, but reading these kinds of post that are super clear, succint and incredibly useful helps me to understand what (is good) I want out of blogging and photos and what needs to be done, and what I am yet to learn. You and V. from Grit&Glamour are queens of great blogging&photos posts. Thank you very much for that. I have them bookmarked and read every now and then because starting a blog again after a long pause threw me few steps back . And we al know it – technology is crazy with new stuff!

  • http://adahliavolk.com Chrissy

    Great Tips! I think it is great to always improve and become better versions of ourselves and of our blogs! Thank You!!

    adahliavolk.com

  • http://www.fashionatforty.blogspot.com Niki

    Thank you for writing this Kristina. I have a question about image size on blogger. I’m testing an image that is 700 pixels wide by 933 pixels high (I know it’s huge). My blogger template is 1100 pixels wide all over and 230 pixels of it is the right side bar. That means I have 870 pixels to work with for photos. So I sized my photo down to 700 pixels wide. I uploaded to Photobucket, did a direct link copy to blogger and removed the height/width HTML coding. It’s flooding the content pane, which is what I wanted but the margin bar is that separates my content pane from my right sidebar is now missing. I’ve tried to resize my image down to 600 pixels wide and up to 850 pixels wide and the image keeps coming in at exactly the same size (once I remove the height/width restrictions in blogger). What am I doing wrong? I resize in photoshop, re-link from photobucket, and the picture is the same dang size as before. I’ve tried deleting the photo from photobucket and renaming the original source photo and reuploading. Nothings working to get the size down. Just keeps flooding the pane exactly the same size no matter what I do to the source file.

    • http://prettyshinysparkly.com Kristina

      hm I’m not really sure as I’m unfamiliar with blogger. Are you sure it isn’t a template issue? To me it sounds actually like a photobucket problem. Try uploading a photo elsewhere other than photobucket and see if that corrects the issue. Sorry i can’t be of more help!

  • http://heartprintandstyle.com Vivi

    Thank you for these tips. Especially, the photo re-sizing. I may start using Flickr to help me with this!

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  • http://twitter.com/janelle_aleese Janelle

    A great read. Very imformative!

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  • http://Stillbeingdeveloped!! Frana

    This is what scares me the most about starting up my blog..PHOTOGRAPHY…I am just not that good:( We have a DSLR camera… the lens it came with has broken, which I guess is a good excuse to upgrade it!! But still its not just the camera, it is the photographer..But I am going to re-read this blog MANY times before I get started…wish me luck!! xx

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  • http://www.ripped-nylon.com Miss ED

    Hi Kristina! Both parts of this series have been amazing and helpful. I recently took a long break from posting regularly, but now that I’ve fallen in love with blogging again (and have a handle on my schedule), I knew just where to go to find a kick-start guide for this new year! I’m so excited to try these photo tips out, thanks so much for your hard work!

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  • Sarah

    Thanks so much for sharing this and part 1 with us.. so super helpful for a potential future blogger like me..

    Thanks again..

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  • http://houseofchevalier.wordpress.com/ Kat

    great advice thank you!

  • http://www.jaderoseblog.com Jade Rose McArthur

    I just started a fashion blog (first mistake was my name of which I already bought the URL to!) and the 2nd and 3rd mistake?! Well, the list goes on- thank you so much for your help and insight, my fiance and I have no clue how to work my canon 20D, so this is incredibly helpful! I truly appreciate it!!!

  • Mariana Yanez

    Hi Kristina, thank you so much for this tips! My friend and I have decided to start a fashion blog and your awesome tips will be of so much help to us. We’re from Venezuela and it’s really not that common to have a fashion blog here. We didn’t know if we should do it on Blogger or WordPress since we haven’t worked with any of them, but thanks to you, we decided on WordPress. If you have any other tip that can get us started, you can send it to thegirlissue@gmail.com. Thank you so much and congratulations! :)

  • http://fairvanitydc.blogspot.com/ Rachel Mlinarchik

    This whole series is super helpful, especially for newcomers like me!! Thank you so much for taking the time to do this.

    xo
    Rachel
    http://fairvanitydc.blogspot.com/

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  • http://sweetapplelifestyle.blogspot.co.nz/ Katie

    Thank you, this was so helpful. Especially the part about the photos. I have been making my photos far too small. Would love to know how to organise my archive on blogger, as my blog is fashion, food and some other delights. Thanks again, Katie

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  • http://www.ashmaxstyle.com Ashlee

    The information and tips in this article are exactly what I’ve needed and have been looking for! I started my blog in March and my biggest issue has been taking pictures- and having others take pictures of me – that are great quality and that I’d be proud to post on my blog. I’m so excited to have this info – I’ve got the camera too so I’m thinking now all I need is a little photoshoot later today during the golden hour!!! Thank you so much!!!

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  • Anh

    Thank you so much for posting this! I just started a blog and this was extremely helpful! I have already changed a few things on my blog after reading this post! Like blow up my picures! I hoping to share your blog with other friends and this really helpful link! Thank you again!!!!

  • http://www.youngdumblove.com London Camille

    just came across this while googling photo tips for fashion blogs. so glad to have found it! thank you, thank you, thank you! i learned so much.
    -london camille
    http://www.youngudumblove.com

  • http://boyerfamilysingers.blogspot.com Charlotte Boyer

    Once again, thank you for posting such wisdom in blogging! It’s always great to know more about making the images you put on your blog look good, and this post is very helpful in that! :) I will be referencing this and your first post on blogging as I beautify my family’s blog!

    Thanks again!

    Charlotte

  • http://www.inspiredwish.com Jeanie

    Loved this article. Was great to read about your lens recommendations! I agree with so much of this. I was nodding as you said not showing off your photo to the full column width makes you sad. I think my photos are getting better each time. Love your tips to keep me on that journey. Thanks!

  • http://thefashioncarousel.tumblr.com/ Bianca

    Such a great post! am seriously thinking of starting my own personal style blog, although am afraid i will not find time to shoot once i start an 8 to 5 job! any advice? on an other note, you’ve been of great great help! Thanks!

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  • http://fionachanjf.com Fiona Chan

    omg I am learning photography from a fashion blog! But anyway thanks for the tip! I’m going to have to try using what I learnt here :D And more.

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  • merchmaven

    I sat down this morning to do some research on this new camera i bought, specifically for a personal style blog i just started, and randomly came across this post…Fate! Thank you so much for all your tips – I took notes and cant wait to do some test shots with my photog/husband. ;)

  • Ibtesam tajmul

    You are amazing!! I just randomly started my fashion and beauty blog and wanted to know how to take good professional pictures. I love a blog with tons of pictures..:D Thanks for all the tips and tricks.I will definetly share this informtaion:D

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  • http://alittledashofdarling.com/ Caitlin Lindquist

    I cant even tell you how much I appreciate this post! I have to keep coming back to revisit! You are so thoughtful to do all this. My amazing husband (photographer) is learning how to take photos just for me, and we are both learning in the process. You have been such a huge help so thank you.

    Please check out my page and see how we are doing! :)

    http://www.alittledashofdarling.com

  • J Ciriello

    thank you so much. i have a canon powershot sx40 which is not a DSLR because it does not have an interchangable lens. i am so bummed that i spent $400 on the camera because now it’s preventing me from buying a better camera. when i switch to manual focus and adjust the aperture to 3.5 or 4, i don’t know how to adjust the other features (iso, and loads of other options) so the screen becomes either white or black. it’s not as easy as people describe it to be. thanks for the tips though !!!
    http://www.not-going-out-like-that.com

  • Olivia Dackombe

    This has really helped, thanks for the camera recommendations!

    http://styledelinquent.com/

  • http://twitter.com/VintageDanielle Danielle

    THANK YOU so much for this post. I’m planning on buying my first real professional camera soon and no nothing about photography. I can’t wait to use these tips in action for my blog.

    XOXO,
    Danielle http://www.vintagedanielle.blogspot.com

  • http://TheStyleGospel.com/ Rena_theStyleGospel

    One word – AWWWWESOME. Very reader-friendly explanations. I’m hoping my husband can utilize your info. I’ve been taking my own pics with a remote control and had to tether my computer and DSLR so I can see my pics in a larger format (saves time having to run back and forth to look into the lens and I can see more image details.) But having someone else take the pics would be sooo much easier. Thanks again for the awesome tips!!
    Rena
    http://theStyleGospel.com

  • Maia Cristianne

    This was awesome! I’m currently struggling to make my new fashion blog work.

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  • Lori Ismail

    How incredibly helpful! Thank you!

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  • http://www.facebook.com/ema.sheistheone Ema Sheistheone

    this is one of the best help-post i ever read! thanks!!!

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  • ToniBalonbi97

    I just wanted to take a minute to thank you for all the hard work you’ve put into to your blogging how-to posts. I read part one today, and it helped finally decide to create a blog. I’m in this for the experience, not for the fame, but it won’t hurt to make my blog look good! Thanks so much for taking time out to help others improve their blogs. Hopefully your advice will help me to get my own blog started!

    xoxo,
    Toni
    http://calamitousupheaval.wordpress.com/

  • Jen Hall

    This was soo helpful. I just started a blog myself.

    Thanks!
    Jen
    http://glamglitzandgluesticks.blogspot.com/

  • Josephchen61

    Very good post. Informative and helpful. Thanks for sharing.

  • estefania

    amazing and very helpfull! thank you so much for this amazing tips!! 

  • Chi-Chi Aniebonam

    amazing post. youre incredibly talented and inspiring. thank you! ox 

    http://www.dryycleanonly.com

  • Raneem

    i rarely comment on any posts, but can i just say, THANK YOU SO MUCH! this was amazing, and gave such a great insight on how to start my fashion blog. thank you so soso much xx

  • Jessica McLain

    Absolutely love this!!! Thank you so much for these tips! I am upgrading cameras from a NikonJ1 to a Canon Rebel t4i tomorrow! As I was doing some research for this switch, I happened upon your post. Love it! xoxo, Jessica

    http://www.proverbsliving.org

  • Gita Amanda

    Thank you so much for posting such a helpful post! I was looking for the fashion photography tutorial but none is as great as yours!
    Xoxo

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  • examplesample

    A good point and shoot for nice bokeh is the Canon SX260. I use it as a concert camera as well because it’s got 20x zoom, so you can get right up on the stage. I recommend it for folks who don’t want to invest in a DSLR but still want a decent cam. It goes up to f/3.5 as well, and takes HD vids.

  • Cecil Fashion

    Love your blog and posts as well. You are inspiring me to be a better blogger. Thank you

  • Jannine Bandiola

    Really helpful post! You covered everything needed in fashion blogging. Thanks!

  • http://www.styleheritage.com styleheritage

    Kristina, this is one of the most helpful posts I’ve read so far about fashion blogging photography. It’s really generous of you to share so many useful tips that can help others, especially newcomers like myself. Thank you for that!

  • http://www.krembdelakremb.com Ann

    I love tip #5! I think part of the reason some of my pics are turning out ok is that my son is taking the pictures. He doesn’t have to bend his knees, but he’s hitting the area you speak of. Thanks for this post–and the prequel! Excellent tips!

    A x

  • http://www.libertadgreen.blogspot.com Libertad Green

    Very helpful information, thanks for posting! Photos not filling the post space is something I am guilty of, so I am trying to work on it :)

  • http://hesterlierre.blogspot.co.uk Hester Lierre

    Thank you so much for these guides. I stumbled across them whilst looking for photography tips and am really impressed with the depth and thought that’s gone into them. I especially like your tips about photographing at the golden hour, although I’m not sure it’s the English weather’s going to be good enough this winter for it!!

  • http://nightskill.pl/profile.php?mode=viewprofile&u=10099 homepage

    Thanks veгу nicе blog!

  • Nessa (Life’s Lust Haves)

    Fantastic article..thank you so much! xoxo

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  • ellen ross

    thank you so much for this!

  • girl in four
  • http://beyourstylishself.blogspot.com Nijee Warfield

    Would this information apply to men fashion blogs?

  • Lorna Mai Ltd

    Again, incredibly useful. I’m so new to fashion blogging I haven’t even bought a proper camera yet. I love these tips like golden hour and also the using wide apertures. I have a question though. Can you recommend a camera which is very good but not a really expensive one? I’ve only just begun fashion blogging and don’t want to splurge until I know for sure I’m going to stick at it! Thank you for your help.

  • Nijee Warfield

    As a Newbie men’s fashion/lifestyle/art blogger I want the best equipment and information. But as a college as a college student I am forced to work on a budget. Do you have any advice or information for college students starting out on a budget?

  • Hayley Larue

    Thank you for this! I just got my Canon! :)

    - http://www.meyouandhayleylarue.com

  • LJ

    Thanks for a great post! Can’t wait to go out for a shoot and put this great advice to use! sidewalkstrut.com

  • Madeline Weinstein

    Thank you so much for your incredibly thought out tips on fashion photography. I have been looking for a tutorial geared specifically towards outfit photos and FINALLY found it in this post. I cannot wait to implement my newfound knowledge when snapping some shots. The aperture tip is priceless. I am so thankful!

  • Coffeebeanlilly

    What a well written post! Thank you for that! Your post will make it so much easier for me to figure out how to produce great photos for my blog!

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  • http://www.lesley-kim.com Lesley Kim

    Great tips! Thanks!

  • http://www.clippingimages.com/ Clippingimages

    Love the shots….Great ideas & scenery