If you produce content for companies, or even if you just produce content for your own business, you need to make sure you’re working towards content production in the most creative way possible without introducing complete chaos as you go about it.
Content creation is an important thing to do for every business, but small businesses don’t always have the big budget to pay professionals, and they may not have the budget for the fancy equipment like expensive cameras and lights in order to get the “best” shots either.
Using Your Cellphone For Photography
Cellphone photography has come a long way in the last few years, and smartphone cameras are now able to capture some incredible shots, sometimes even fooling the professional photographers as to whether or not it was taking using pro equipment! There’s nothing wrong with using your cellphone, and the phrase “the best camera is the one you have in your hand” is really true here!
If you need to take some photos of your business or your products as part of your content creative drive, make sure you plan how to do it in advance. This guide to creating a creative workflow is invaluable for small and medium-sized businesses that are serious about doing content creation right. It will ensure that you are hitting deadlines, handling speedbumps well, and getting a great result.
What To Shoot?
Sometimes it’s not about the camera; it’s about knowing what to shoot and when, and how that shot will be useful for your content creation process. Here are eight ideas for photos you can shoot on a cellphone to help you with your content creation inspiration.
Black and White
That moody edgy black and white look called vignette is classic and very popular! There are lots of reasons to shoot black and white, and generally, people use black and white photography to give a specific mood and emotion to the shot. You can also use black and white photography to help the user focus on a specific area of the photo, removing all background distractions.
Shoot Your Pets
Nothing says good content like photos of pets! Adding a cute dog or an adorable cat to your photos for your business can help to drive your engagement up because people love images of cute animals, and they can be great models for your products too!
Think outside the box with this one. Can your cat wear that necklace you’re selling? How about putting your dog on that picnic blanket you have in your store to show that they will enjoy the great outdoors with you?
Get creative, and have fun with this one.
Shoot The Weather
The weather is a universal phenomenon that everyone experiences but that everyone across the world experiences at a different time. Incorporating weather shots into your content creation process is a good way to connect with your audience. Show your snow day photos, shoot your products out in the sunshine, and get everyone on board when it’s rainy and all you want to do is be outside.
This is a really creative style of photography that does require some pre-organization. For individual people who are just taking photos for fun or for news purposes, there is no need to be worried about model release forms, but if you are a business and will be using your street photography for commercial purposes, you’ll need to get any recognizable people to sign a model release form, and any recognizable buildings or graffiti will need to also be signed away by the owner.
Incorporating street photography is great for urban brands, though, especially if you can mix it with black and white styles too.
Landscapes can be evocative, and they can help to connect you with your audience if you have a particularly famous landscape. Use landscape photography for brands where your location matters. Maybe you have wool products from a specific region, or you create clothing based on traditional clothing from tribes in the area. This is the kind of reason landscape photography can be popular and is a great idea for your business.
Top tip: don’t forget your tripod with these types of shots, and enable the cross-hairs on your phone’s camera to make sure you get the horizon level!
Are you selling products that have a lot of intricate details? Like jewelry or artwork? Now is the time to up your macro game! Phones like the Xiaomi Mi 11 have a specialist macro setting that will allow you to really get close to your subject and get the detail in your photo without it being blurry or poor quality.
Another use for macro photos is on your social media feeds to drive some engagement. You may want to take a series of abstract macro shots of your products and get your followers to guess what the product is in the photo, perhaps even combining it with a competition or giveaway.
It’s these simple but fun pieces of content that help businesses to engage with their followers on another level.
Texture comes in all kinds of ways, and using texture to sell your products in photography is a great way to add depth to your content creation process.
For example, you may be selling men’s watches made from brushed steel. In your photography, you’ll want to use a contrasting texture for the background, either a matt background like paper or cardboard or maybe even a very soft background like feathers or a wool blanket.
Combining textures in your photography gives them a story and a meaning that is difficult to convey over text alone because it is so subtle and subliminal.
Finally, capturing movement in your photos is a great idea! This may be difficult to do with a smartphone camera, but most have manual controls so that you can slow the shutter down and try out some panning shots.
Movement shots give your audience a sense of urgency and FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) which is always good for selling products!