Instagram: The basics for a better feed
By Rosemary De Souza, Features Editor
It has been nearly six months since I decided to delete most of the photos I had on my Instagram account. I was not happy with the photos I took in high school so it became my mission to change things around and build a portfolio, photo gallery and expression of my newfound personality and a board of inspiration for myself and others to see.
It’s that page of perfectly aligned, spaced, square-shaped miniscule images, that when opened brings you to a view worth your time. That’s the goal at least. Although I still have a long way to go, here are some basic lessons for those starting anew on the social platform.
Invest in a good camera
This may be obvious but for some, it can be intimidating to get your hands on an expensive and perfect camera. So instead, maybe try investing in a better mobile camera from your carrier. If there is one big benefit to living in this day and age, it’s being able to travel around the world, taking photos and connecting with friends all in one device. Some popular mobile camera brands are Pixel, Samsung and the iPhone.
Another lesson I discovered is that it may be too hard to build similar feeds like the ones I idolize. The mere reason is that I do not earn enough money to eat out every single day or travel every single month.
Despite feeling down, however, it made me realize that the challenge comes in making ordinary moments photogenic, from capturing the amazing breakfast you had one morning to the empty hallways you walk on late at night after your 9 p.m. class.
Make an effort and challenge yourself to create amazing photos that capture your life and not somebody else’s.
Following my previous learning is consistency. Many great Instagram feeds, no matter what the Instagram user takes photos of, have an underlying consistency in either the colour, scene or exposure of the images they capture.
I mean, I’m not one to follow rules, but I think as time goes on you can develop a style unknowingly that will be visible throughout your feed. But do not be afraid to stray from your creative direction. Choose to constantly challenge yourself and think outside of the box when taking photos or videos. Make it a learning process.
Have an eye for the scene
It may take practice, but it is not impossible to capture good photos in the simplest circumstances. If there is something that excites you, like food, books or specific scenery that has been photographed by other Instagram-ers, do not be afraid to take a shot at it. Experiment with angles, lighting and exposure. Bring your focus to one part of the scene that has not been well-photographed in the past. One way of doing this is by taking a close up or a medium shot if other Instagram-ers took a wide-angle shot or vice-versa. Try something new. Make it yours. By experimenting on the photos you take, you can develop your own eye for imagery that is unique to you.
Stay in love
One last tip is to keep going. Try to fall in love with photography over and over again. If you’re getting bored, maybe you are not challenging yourself enough or have been playing it safe for way too long. Try to push your barriers. Envision what more you can do for yourself as a growing photographer or for inspiration for future photos you wish to capture. Keep going. Keep pulling out your camera and taking those imperfect shots until you get the right one.