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Style blogging is so hot right now! As we scroll through carefully curated photos of our favorite fashionistas, we don’t hesitate to give ’em a double-tap ♥. But if you’re just stepping into style blogging, it can all be intimidating. You probably wonder how you can measure up to these seemingly perfect photos with no budget for a professional photographer!
When I first started this blog in 2012, it was supposed to be a natural hair and fashion/style blog. Thing is, I struggled to get the style photos I really wanted, sometimes resorting to taking some sorry indoor pics… bleh! Outdoor style pics were few and far between, many times spur-of-the-moment. After a while, I gave up.
Contrary to popular belief, not all bloggers with a decent following are ballin’ outta control! If we are making any money, we just may not have the wiggle room for the expense of a photog. So, what do you do? If you’re in this boat (with me), here are a few ways to get those blog photos without a photographer.
1. Ask a Friend/Significant Other
One or two bloggers I follow got the nerve to have ACTUAL photographer husbands and boyfriends! *slow blink* If you don’t have that “luxury”, your boo may still be down to take your style pics without a fight. I, however, have been blessed with a man who hates taking pictures *shrug*, although I still most certainly nag him to do so when I’m desperate… and he (reluctantly) obliges. (Oh, and also here and here… he’s actually not bad!)
A good friend can also be your go-to until you get the coins to pay a pro. (p.s. the same friend who took the photos here also took the photos in this post!) Since you are friends, though, it can be easy to become super lax because y’all are cool and you’re either not paying them or just slipping them a lil somethin. This is all the more reason why you should be as respectful of their time as you would a professional. Make an appointment, being upfront about the max time your shoot should take, be punctual, and use only as much time as you promised you would. After all, they’re doing YOU a favor!
2. Photo Share with Another Blogger
As you make your way around the blogging community and build relationships with fellow bloggers, why not link up with one or a few for lunch and afterwards, shoot around with one another? Sometimes, your friends don’t “get it”… other bloggers do. They need content and so do you. Y’all can help each other out! See examples of this here, here and here.
Is there something (other than being bomb blogger) that you do particularly well, a service you can provide? Do you have skills in video editing? Moonlight as a makeup artist? Whatever it is that you’re really good at could be exchanged for a few style shots to use on your blog and social media. It’s a “payment” system from way, waaay back but definitely worth a shot in today!
4. Seek Out New Photographers
Coming from a cosmetology background, I understand the need to build a portfolio to prove what you can do when starting out. Newbies breaking into the photography world may very well jump at the opportunity to shoot some style photos in an effort to (1) gain some experience and (2) have a body of work that shows their skills.
A quick Google search will bring up art and photography schools in your area. Contact them to find out how you can possibly work with a student! Social media is, like, THEEE place to find anyone and anything now. Post a flyer or even a video expressing that you’d love to help an eager photography student flex their shooting skills! If it’s in your budget, sweeten the deal by offering breakfast or lunch and/or covering their transportation.
5. Shoot Your Own Photos
And I’m not talking smartphone selfies. If you can or have already invested in a decent camera, I highly recommend getting your hands on a tripod and remote (here’s a nice bundle). Sure, there’s the self-timer but that’s a whole lot of running back and forth that we’re not here for!
Outdoor style photos using natural light are best. Do some location scouting on your down time to find ideal backdrops and the least conspicuous (but not deserted!) places to shoot. You wanna quickly set up your camera, get some rapid-fire shots in and leave without being in anyone’s way or having a ton of nosy eyes on you. Some shoot right in front of a garage door or some other space near their home (see @kekecameron). As long as you have good lighting, you’re golden!How to Get Style Pics for Your Blog When You Can't Afford a Pro Photographer! Click To Tweet
Jeans & Shades – Old Navy (similar shades here) | Shirt – J. Crew Men’s (thrifted, similar here) | Bag – Lily & Eve | Shoes – Necessary Clothing | Necklace – H&M | Watch – JORD
So, don’t get down on yourself if you can’t afford to pay someone to help you get some cool blog content. The bloggers who do had to start somewhere! Try not to compare your journey with where they are now. Hopefully, this has given you a few ideas you can use until you can shell out the dough for a professional!
Photos by my girl, K. Cantave, the same friend who took the photos in this post! 😉
How have you managed to get social media or blog photos without a professional photographer?