The age old ‘instant’ image is diminishing, we are scrolling through an abundance of curated, stylised photography, with numbers ruling our happiness. We absorb more content than we eat meals in a day, but in a saturated industry how can one stand out?
The age old question of ‘What are your tips for Instagram?’ everyone that utilises the app as a business or a source of income receives this question. I will be revealing a tell all; my tips for shooting imagery, finding your style and creating a platform that reflects your identity. If you are in the pipe line for starting a fashion / lifestyle page this is for you.
Do it for love not money.
I started my Instagram page as ‘@laurengcollins’ in roughly 2011 I posted A LOT of images, from what I was eating for breakfast to a picture of my dog. Revelling in the ‘instant’ of the Instagram. Slowly I emerged in to the world of outfits and began posting my daily outfits, pictures of friends, flat lays and making more effort. I studied Photography at A level and Fashion Media Promotion and University which really sparked my love for creating content, stylising shoots and coming up with concepts for ideas. I put this into my personal Instagram and ‘@laurengracelifestyle’ was born. For me it has never been about the number, I didn’t even know it was feasible for me to create an income from doing what I loved until the last few months… Moral of the story: Don’t do it for the money or the number in mind, start it because of interests and passions, creating an organic page is the secret.
Decide your style.
Finding your style can take years, at the ripe age of twenty I probably haven’t found my poignant style however I know what I like and I wear what I want – thats the key. However style doesn’t just stop at the clothes themselves, find what suits you for your captions, imagery styles, editing even your bio. It is all trial and error, once you have it stay consistent your followers want to expect content.
Its all about the effort.
It’s easy to assume, but I think people make judgements that is all just posting a picture. There is a lot more that goes into creating the content that goes in to the pages you follow. A lot of money, researching, time planning, lugging suitcases around in minus temperatures, trying to navigate your way through a minefield industry with little to no rules. Be prepared to put in all your time and effort, but if you love it, it won’t feel like work.
The content is obviously the main part and what I believe the most important, there are a few things you must decide on such as your style of imagery do you want to shoot street style or prefer mirror pictures or even flat lays? Do you want to shoot on a camera or prefer relatable I-phone shots. Do you want your images to be cohesive with a curated feed, then you would edit with one filter or a preset, or do you prefer a natural look to your pictures?
But the most important thing, that I advise you to engrain in to your brain, chant it if you will while you get dressed in the mañana. PRACTICE! You don’t think famous singers, chefs, sportsman became so great without practice? Keep shooting weekly or even daily if possible, eventually you will find yourself.
Utilise the community.
The best thing about being involved with Instagram is the amazing people and friendships I have formed. Finding like minded individuals that can share your love for shooting, working together on ideas and helping each other with photography etc.
Planning ahead is the answer to everything.
You may think the images you see on your timeline are taken that day, but there is nothing current about it (for the majority) Shooting your content in advance makes life a whole lot easier and you can always be one step ahead. I use an app called UNUM to plan my feed, adding in the images you can see how this would appear on your feed, it also gives you the chance to insert captions. There are other apps called Planoly & Preview.