Category Archives: Photography

7 Quick and Simple Tips for Instagram Food Pics

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At this point we’re all familiar with the power of a community brought together by a common love or goal. Instagram harnesses the power of community extremely well; people are naturally drawn to images that elicit emotions. And people feel strongly about food! There are two kinds of food pictures on Instagram: those that make us drool, and those that make us gag.

Don’t be *that* Instagrammer. Follow a few simple tips for Instagram to post great food pictures that will have your audience drooling and growing.

Simple Tips for Instagram

1. Post Good Photographs

It’s obvious and yet somehow still needs to be said. The latest mirrorless or DSLR camera is not necessary for great food shots. A clean, up-to-date phone camera lens is more than up for the job. Take a few minutes to plan the photo and its angle(s), take a few shots, make any necessary edits in a 3rd party app, and save.

2. Pick A Style

What’s your game plan? Do you want to be known for posting pretty, pastel pink cake photos, or are bright colours and textures more your thing? Whatever option you choose, make sure it reflects your vision or story and try to keep the style, tone, and edits similar so your followers know what to expect.

3. Think Formatting

Instagram food photos do best when people can see the food or setting (if that’s applicable). The original square format works well, but don’t forget about the extended size too, especially if the photos are in portrait mode. Landscape food images don’t grab the viewer’s attention as well as portrait or square images.

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4. Save the Words

Don’t hide food under text! What works for other social media channels (think headlines on Pinterest) won’t fly on Instagram. IG is visual storytelling so let the visuals speak for themselves.

5. Build A Community

Followers need to feel engaged by you and by what’s cooking in your kitchen. For that to happen, they want a sense of community, creative and fun content, useful and trending information or images, and visually appealing photos that draw them in. The more you engage with your followers and with the accounts you follow in a genuine manner, the more your community will grow.

6. Don’t Diss the Tags

As annoying as hashtags are, they’re a valuable tool in your Instagram arsenal and will help you connect with your audience. Use them judiciously, research hashtags appropriate to your subject matter, and find new accounts by following the trail. Include hashtags in the first comment underneath your image so viewers aren’t bogged down by tags in your photo blurb.

7. Be Original

Provide original content without crossover from your other social media channels and let your voice and personality come through. As a general rule, regurgitated content from other sites or channels does not do well. This does not apply to reposting with attribution, which is a legitimate way to spread the love for what you love.

Like all forms of social media, if we’re genuine, it comes through and people are attracted to the end result. Food is more than the ingredients we throw together to create a dish, it’s a means of communicating with family or friends and we can extend that to our communities as well.

Check out a few of my favourite Instagram accounts that do food well!

Delightful Adventures

What to Cook Today

Jennifer Bartoli

John Whaite Bakes

Liv for Cake

Photo Escape: Mont-Chiran

Where should we escape to today? I’m in the mood for clean air and open spaces — it happens a lot — so let’s take off for the mountains and the observatory of Mont-Chiran in the Alpes de Haute Provence.

Come along …. you’re dawdling.

Mind the traffic; sheep are notorious road hogs. And stop to pick flowers on the drive, it’s a good way to get your mountain legs — same as sea legs only less wet.

Road to the Observatory on Mont-Chiran, , Alpes de Haute Provence, France, mountains, Verdon, photography

Don’t forget to double-check signposts along the way. They almost certainly (fingers crossed) haven’t been turned around by the wind.

Road to the Observatory of Mont-Chiran, Alpes de Haute Provence, France, mountains, Verdon, photography

You didn’t think you could drive the entire way, did you?

Gateway to Mont-Chiran Observatory and Refuge, Road to the Observatory of Mont-Chiran, Alpes de Haute Provence, France, mountains, Verdon, photography

We’ve finally arrived! Let’s ask the resident astronomer to show us the telescope. During the day the sun puts on a solar flare light show, but it’s at night that the skies really show off.

Observatory, Road to the Observatory of Mont-Chiran, Alpes de Haute Provence, France, mountains, Verdon, photography

Looking at stars is exhausting, so it’s a good thing the gîte tucked to the side of the observatory serves refreshments and keeps restorative games on hand. You can unroll your sleeping bag and spend the night if you’re too tired to wander back down the mountain.

Inside the Refuge at the Observatory of Mont-Chiran, Observatory, Road to the Observatory of Mont-Chiran, Alpes de Haute Provence, France, mountains, Verdon, photography

Bathroom break! X (or cloud) marks the spot.

Mont-Chiran Observatory lavatories, Inside the Refuge at the Observatory of Mont-Chiran, Observatory, Road to the Observatory of Mont-Chiran, Alpes de Haute Provence, France, mountains, Verdon, photography

It was worth the drive, wasn’t it?

compass, Inside the Refuge at the Observatory of Mont-Chiran, Observatory, Road to the Observatory of Mont-Chiran, Alpes de Haute Provence, France, mountains, Verdon, photography

 

Where should we go next week?

Discoveries: Buddhist Temples In Laos

There are many well-known and frequented Buddhist Wats — monasteries and temples — in Laos, but countless more that nobody visits. The wealth and reach of a wat is dependent on the wealth and generosity of its patrons. Some are so small they have a single monk in residence, others are like small villages.

The country sees its share of visitors and the government is beginning to put money not only towards much-needed infrastructure, but also the conservation of heritage sites as it recognizes the value to national pride and in the influx of tourist dollars.

When I visited Laos last January I couldn’t walk past a monastery without taking a detour through its grounds. They’re beautiful without being ostentatious, with the exception of Wat Xieng Thong in Luang Prabang, which is the showpiece of the ancient royal city and although grand and glittery, still beautiful and a living, breathing monastery.

It’s mostly the images of daily life that appealed to me: the living quarters, laundry drying in the sun, the temple dogs — they all have at least one and they’re well cared for — monks going about the daily chores of cooking, studying, discussing, praying, helping, and always ready for a good talk with a passing tourist, the evening call to prayer on the drums that made my heart beat faster. I grew up in a family of mixed traditions and it was interesting to discover some of our traditions’ origins.

With so many monasteries to choose from it is possible to get away from the crowds, walk through a wat, stop for a chat with one of the monks, or just sit quietly on a bench until dinner calls. I recommend trying a bit of all these experiences.

Buddhism, Buddhist, wat, temple, monastery, monks, Laos, Luang Prabang, Asia, travel, discover, photography

Buddhism, Buddhist, wat, temple, monastery, monks, Laos, Luang Prabang, Asia, travel, discover, photography

Buddhism, Buddhist, wat, temple, monastery, monks, Laos, Luang Prabang, Asia, travel, discover, photography

Buddhism, Buddhist, wat, temple, monastery, monks, Laos, Luang Prabang, Asia, travel, discover, photography

Buddhism, Buddhist, wat, temple, monastery, monks, Laos, Luang Prabang, Asia, travel, discover, photography

Buddhism, Buddhist, wat, temple, monastery, monks, Laos, Luang Prabang, Asia, travel, discover, photography

Buddhism, Buddhist, wat, temple, monastery, monks, Laos, Luang Prabang, Asia, travel, discover, photography

Buddhism, Buddhist, wat, temple, monastery, monks, Laos, Luang Prabang, Asia, travel, discover, photography

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