How to take better product photographs for Instagram

March 12, 2021

If you’re already on Instagram, I’m sure you’ve constantly bombarded with snazzy-looking pictures of products. Because Instagram’s main priority is incredible images, you need to know how to take fantastic product photographs in order to increase your brand’s engagement (and from this, sales). So, what is the key to an insta-worthy shot?

Lighting is key

If you’re someone who regularly photographs yourself, then you’re probably aware that lighting is everything! And this is no exception when it comes to photographing Instagram products. Generally, natural lighting looks best in pictures (although sometimes this is in short supply). So start by finding the best natural light in your house or shoot location. If you’re indoors, then this will generally be found near a window or door, or you can always take your product outside! You will probably want to avoid direct sunlight because it can create unpleasant shadows. But don’t be afraid of playing around with things like shadows and patterns!

Image background

You may already have some insta-worthy photography backgrounds inside your house or in other locations, but if not, you can always buy coloured and plain backgrounds cheaply from sites like Aliexpress. Otherwise, you can always get a large thin piece of wood or cardboard and paint it in any colour you like to create a cheap and affordable background. You should aim for a few backgrounds that you can alternate between for these shots.

Styled images

A styled image is a type of photograph that uses props/decorations to emphasize your product. Your choice of props/background can make or break these images. So before you snap your pictures, make sure to plan out your shot, know what feeling you want to show in these images, and what brand colours/props fit with your brand’s tone of voice.

Lifestyle image

On the other hand, lifestyle photographs are more natural-looking photographs that show how these products would look in their natural environment, or being used by the consumer. These photographs are more relatable to the consumer because they can more easily envision themselves using the product. 

You will find that your audience may respond to either styled images or lifestyle images better. However, I think it’s a fantastic idea to photograph a mix of both of these types of images.

Use a high-quality phone or camera

It goes without saying, but the higher quality phone or camera, the sharper your images will be (provided you know how to use the technology correctly). If you are using a camera, then it is probably also a good idea to use a tripod to steady your camera for less shaky images.

Keeping the style consistent

The key to keeping a fantastic Instagram feed is to create a consistent style to Instagram images so that people get to know your brand’s tone. To accomplish this, you should use the same colour, typography, lighting, editing presets, and filters in your images. You can also change these up from time to time to freshen up the look of your photographs!

However, if you would prefer to spend your time doing something else, Shoot and Swoon take fantastic brand photographs, like the ones seen above! We work closely with each brand to create incredible photographs that reflect the look and feel of your brand. You can check out our website for more information.