All those artfully placed arrangements of morning coffee cups and those adorable little pups, freshly picked flowers and perfectly seasoned salads, newly published fashion magazines, and colourful editorial-like OOTD’s, for Instagram pics aren’t pretty just by magic!
A creative flair, patience and a particular skillset are all necessary, if you want your feed to compete with that of the best Instagram bloggers out there.
When it comes to making your feed look appealing, consistency is key. You want all your pictures to have uniformity. You do this by deciding on an overall theme, depending on the nature of your pictures and sticking to it. Once you’ve determined whether you want the feel of your feed to be for example, vivid or muted, clean or busy, colourful, monochrome or dull, editorial or scrapbook-like, you can then progress to the editing phase, which can make all the difference.
Use external apps
Aden, Valencia, Slumber, Crema, Perpetua, Mayfair, Amaro are some of names of the filters provided on the social media platform; unless you’re an Instagrammer, you probably thought that those were names of random places. As you may have guessed, if you’re trying to keep up with the best blogger feeds out there, a quick decision between Mayfair and Valencia just won’t cut it! In fact, most bloggers use external editing apps to get their pictures looking their finest.
Photoshop express, is a great app for altering the exposure, brightness, texture and white balance of your pictures. This would be your first step towards editing.
In terms of using filters on your images, most bloggers use and highly recommend VSCOcam due to the array of filters to choose from. Other editing apps include Afterlight, Image Blender, Snapseed and PicsArt. If you’re struggling to determine which filter you should use, or how much you should increase the exposure of images and alter the temperature, research suggests that filters which increase warmth, exposure and contrast, boost engagement. Such corrections, increase the likelihood of the picture being viewed by 21% and are 45% more likely to be “liked” and commented on by others.
The dominant colours in your pictures
Obviously you can’t always choose which will be the dominant colour in your pictures. However, according to research from Curlate, in an analysis of 8 million Instagram pictures, it was found that pictures which were more blue, generated 24% more likes than images which were predominantly red or orange.
Keep your background clean
The idea behind this is that when there is a large amount of background space, it allows for the eyes to rest. So when the background of your pictures is clean, you’re more likely to grab the attention of those serial Instagram scrollers.
Ideally you want all your pictures to be the same ratio. Though this is sometimes a challenge, you could use InstaSize to crop all your pictures to be identical, making your feed uniform and pleasing to the eye. Depending on your image ratio size, once you square your images you would be left with an amount of white space, boosting the engagement with your pictures (Double whammy)!
Editing alone is not enough
Editing can dramatically improve your pictures, but unless you’re an editor guru, your picture needs to be good to begin with. When taking pictures, you should consider the lighting, composition and organisation of all the different elements in your frame. Even if this means waking up extra early in the morning to take pictures, using those perfectly golden lit rays of the sunrise, or delaying tucking into that highly anticipated chocolaty pancake for a few minutes, to rearrange the elements in the shot. These are the sacrifices you have to make to get you ahead in your Instagram game (it’ll be worth it in the end).
Keep it real
In actual fact you could edit your pictures ‘till the cows come home, until you look unrecognisable, as if you’ve spent too much time in the tanning booth, or to the extent to which, your facial features disappear. So just remember not to get overexcited with the editing process, always look at the original and compare. Even though you want your picture to look better than the original, that doesn’t mean that there should be a huge discrepancy between the original and the edited version.