By Gemma Peanut
As creatives, we can love our art so much that we may struggle to think of it as a business.
It may even seem wrong to promote and sell it for monetary gain - but we all need to make a living and what better way than by doing what you are bonkers passionate about!
That being said, I do cringe at the thought of bookkeeping and even invoicing clients which are all parts of working for yourself - but one area that I am more comfortable with these days, is marketing.
And the reason for this, is I think I’ve cracked the code...
3 years ago, I was crying myself to sleep, stressing my little heart out over what the heck I was going to do with my life. A friend suggested that I start blogging as an outlet and a way of deciphering through all the confusion and so begun Gemma Peanut Gallery.
As I continued to share my musings and adventures, I realised the power of imagery. They say a picture is worth a thousand words and I quickly learnt this first-hand by seeing the response on my blog to different images. It seemed that having great visuals was a easy win on the marketing side! This realisation fed my curiosity about learning how to take better photos and so began my foray into photography…
Today, I am a professional shutterbug on a mission to help creative creatures become the boss of their cameras once and for all so that they can produce stunning imagery that shows off their art to the masses.
I’m going to share with you the photography tips that helped me level up my blog.
The most compelling photos have movement OOZING out of them and because of this, they tell a story instead of just showing a static, frozen moment in time. The viewer is drawn in and invited to daydream about what’s going on in the image.
My favourite cues to capture a sense of motion in photographs is to take a walk or to do a twirl which instantly injects playfulness and spirit.
2/ IMAGE BANKING
Ever typed up the final word of your masterpiece, been super eager to hit “publish” and then realised you have no images to jazz it up and to use to share on Facebook? This is where image banking comes in real handy.
To key to creating a plentiful and versatile arsenal of photographs is to shoot for variety. Consider capturing a range of emotions from smiling straight to camera, to side-profiles staring off pensively, to candid and whimsical back shots. Shoot a scene with both portrait and landscape framing and both close-ups and wide-angle shots.
3/ FLAT LAYS
Flat lays are so visually captivating when everything falls together effortlessly - but trust me, there is a lot of effort involved! You have to select and arrange the items in a way that expresses an idea or a theme and then you have to take the photo from the right angle, with the right framing and the right lighting.
Never fear! There are some sure-fire ways to make your flat lay ultra-pinnable! Pick a tonal palette and stick to it to create instant harmony in your flat lay and choose a background that allows these colours to shine. Matte cardstock, hardwood floors and granite bench tops work wonders!
Now for how many objects...I find that the magic number is 3. You can create so many balanced arrangements with just 3 items such as all 3 in a row, or peeking in from 3 of the corners leaving one corner intriguingly blank which leads me to…
4/ NEGATIVE SPACE
As with many things, less is more and photography is no different with the nifty technique of negative space. Negative space is simply the space surrounding the hero of your image - so picture your model against a big, blank wall or a pretty trinket against a patterned rug. Negative space makes your subject or object really pop!
And it’s also handy for blogging because you’ll be able to easily add in some text to form a header image or a quote perfect for Instagram.
Photography is the ultimate marketing tool and its uses to give your blog that extra edge are endless!
Gemma Peanut is a professional shutterbug and story teller. Armed with her camera, her untamed heart and a boundlessly messy imagination. If you’d like to keep on learning about photography, check out Photography 101 with Gemma Peanut where manual mode photography is broken down into human-speak across several beautifully presented video tutorials + the super-active and exclusive Shutterbug Club.