Information Detox

vintage radioI’m currently on day 2 of a self-imposed 5 day information detox. This means I’m not going on social media, avoiding self-help articles, and steering clear of celebrity gossip sites. If I didn’t already not watch the news I would be refraining from that as well.

I realized while reading my personal bible (read: not The Bible) that I spend way too much time consuming information. When you work online it can be a slippery slope to logging hours of unnecessary surfing all the while thinking you’re soaking in useful information. So far my brain has appreciated the mental break, but it’s been difficult breaking the habits of muscle memory that include typing F-ENTER and quickly scrolling through Facebook.

Another Chance for Renewal

money tree braided trunkWith the Spring Equinox happening yesterday and Friday beginning now, this weekend is the perfect opportunity to revive my life and enter the new season ready for anything, with sights set only on the things I want. I have plans to clean house, relax with no guilt, and plan the introduction of many more plants into my life. The above money tree is currently being rehabilitated in my office after one too many attacks from Nathan the cat. It’s almost ready to come home and hang out on the porch!

6 Awesome Tips to Take Your Photo Shoots to the Next Level

blurb fashion bookDoes anyone else regularly fabricate photo shoots for no real reason? With Instagram, Tumblr, and the internet in general, we’re in the era of “everyone is a photographer.” But the good news about the vast resourcefulness of the internet is – you can actually be good at it! However, as much as I love sharing images online, there is something so classic about book form.

I love the idea of pulling together the best images of the year, and assembling them into a yearbook of your life. The shoot Taylor and I did last fall was so fun and really spoke to me creatively. I definitely plan on working more of those into my artist life.

The above image is from a fashion book called HeadingSouth I found on Blurb, who has so kindly shared some photo shoot tips to help take your images to the next level:

1. It’s all about lighting.

To make your fashion really pop, choose natural light or studio light with a soft box (you can even make one from a lamp and last season’s white t-shirt). If you’re using a flash, you’ll probably want to bounce it or stick a diffusion filter on it.

2. Make a shot list.

This is a critical step, and even more important if you are photographing models. Even if your model is just your best friend who owes you a favor, they’ll appreciate it if you know exactly what you want to shoot. Think about the poses you want to capture, the outfits you want them to wear, and the details that you want to highlight in every shot.

3. White balance (WB).

Accurate color and skin tones come from making sure the WB function on your camera is set to your lighting situation.

4. Choose the right lens/zoom setting.

If you’re using a wide angle, you’re going to lose your beautiful lines (and your model may never forgive you). If you have a camera with different zoom levels, zoom out to minimize lens barrel distortion.

5. Keep it stylish.

It’s a fashion shoot, after all. Play music, keep things moving, try new angles. Attitude, attitude, attitude.

6. Dress it up.

Make your book as fashionable as the clothing featured in it. Choose a simple design that doesn’t upstage the clothing, but still looks chic. Pick a size and paper type that showcases the work brilliantly.

I feel like these tips seem fairly basic, but if you’re not in an industry that regularly does shoots, it can be easy to forget to make a shot list, or set the right energy for the photos.

If you’re in the mood to make your own book, you can save 25% on print book orders of $75+ at Blurb. If you do, make sure to leave a link below – I’d love to check it out!

This post was created in partnership with Blurb. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the companies that make Estate possible.