It’s been a good while since I shared how I edit my Instagram pictures, and basically, the whole shebang has changed. I still faff around, but I guess I’ve streamlined the process and don’t use half as many apps as I used to. For helping out with fashion blogging, these are the apps I use on a day to day basis…
FIRST THINGS FIRST – CAMERA, LIGHTING ETC.
Okay, quick run through on the pre-editing stuff as I get asked a fair bit about cameras and so on. For Instagram images, I currently use the Samsung NX Mini. For me, it’s a handy size and does all I need for quick, but decent quality pictures. Lighting wise, I mainly try to stand in front of a big window for natural light, but having white walls does help to keep things nice and bright. I’ve used light boxes over the winter too, and reluctantly, that’s probably what I’ll opt for when the clocks change… Blogging over A/W is 10X more difficult!
Generally, I take most of my pictures by myself, using a tripod (or occasionally a selfie stick) and the timer feature. It works for me as I like the photography side of it as much as dressing up. Set up wise it means I don’t have to rely on anyone else.
THE BIG ONE – APPS
In my case, it’s actually an ‘app’. That’s not to say I don’t go to town when it comes to Instagram editing. Lol… I totally do, but I mostly use Enlight these days. It does pretty much all I need, I find it’s the easiest to work with and the most advanced when it comes to features. I’ve almost said bye bye to VSCO after deciding their filters altered quality way too much, and only use Facetune if I’m having a desperately bad skin day.
Enlight mostly became my favourite because on almost all features (filters, brightening, denoiseing etc.) you can choose to apply it/remove it from certain areas. It’s a dreeeam, meaning I can tan up on fake tan disasters, lighten random shadows and apply filters where they’re flattering. My general routine on Enlight though is lighten, alter contrast, apply a B&W filter to backgrounds to make them extra white, smooth any skin issues and add detail/sharpen up any areas I want to draw attention to (jewellery, handbags, that kind of thing). I bother with filters less and less, but occasionally I use AD4, Lagoon or Cave which can be found on Adjust. Kayyyy, that does sound like a lengthy process, but I’m a girl taking pictures with a tripod in my bedroom… I need all the help I can get!
Other features that stand out for me on Enlight include their Heal tool and Mixer. With Heal, I can either clear up spots or use it to get rid of stuff in the background I’m not keen on – I use it most for getting rid of plug sockets! Mixer I use in a similar way – it allows you to mix two pictures together. So, say my cushion looks neater in the background of a different picture to what I’m using, I can use the better shot over the top of the original and wipe off areas I don’t need. I also use it alongside Instafit to extend the background of pictures so they fit, without having to have white edges – the joys of usually going for a plain white background! I’m completely OTT when it comes to this kind of thing, but it just bugs me when things aren’t quite right!
Anyway, above is an example for you. Main changes are lighting and background using Adjust and Mixer, but I’ve also toned down saturation (yup, tan disaster) and brought out some of the details on my face. I’m a Photoshopper’s worst nightmare, so please don’t analyse too closely, ha! This is just what I do from my phone on the go, so things aren’t always perfect… One time I did almost upload with an overlay that meant I looked like I had three hands. Lol.
Enlight editing does sound quite confusing, but once you’ve had a play around on it you’ll suss it out. They run live tutorials over on their Facebook page too which I’d really recommend… Some of them are completely abstract edits, but there are always tips you can take away with you.
A final thing that I’ve come to love recently is an app called UNUM. Have you ever tried it out?! Errrghmygahhhd it’s a game changer for bloggers! It basically allows you to view what your post will look like alongside the images currently on your Instagram, so if you’re loyal to an Instagram theme, download this ASAP! It helps me work out if one picture is way darker or the saturation is too high, and generally get an idea of how all my pictures look together.
Aaaand that’s it. I know, there’s plenty going on on the editing front, but I think it comes with the blogging territory! If there’s anything out there that can make my DIY ‘studio’ a little more polished then I’m always up for it. I’ve used so many different editing platforms/cameras/lighting options over the years, but this is what I currently find works the best.
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