I’ve been in the photography business now for about 5 years altogether. Though I’ve gotten steadily better at my camera settings and “lining up the shot,” I’m surprised again and again at the reality that a picture doesn’t have to be perfect to be powerful.
In today’s fast-paced culture, businesses are expected to churn out content faster than ever before—often forcing them to choose between “done” and “perfect.” According to Malcolm Gladwell’s book Outliers, some 10,000 hours are required to become a “master” of anything; but when you’re expected to post once a day on at least 3 social platforms in order to stay top-of-mind, suddenly even 10 minutes becomes a luxury.
In every one of the photos in today’s post, I would love to change at least one thing. But that doesn’t mean that they can’t serve their purpose: to catch the right person’s eye in an email blast or an Instagram feed.
When you look at this photo, what do you see?
Most likely, you see the cream swirling around in the coffee; it’s the one point of motion in the scene. That was my intention, and I achieved it. The fact that I wish I’d used one more light on “this side” of the coffee mug is something that probably escapes your attention. Just like you probably didn’t notice right away that the top corner of the pitcher is cut off.
What about in this photo?
Well, now you’re probably looking for the one thing that’s “wrong” with the image; but if this picture showed up in your Facebook scroll, would you be looking for that one “wrong” thing? Probably not. So you wouldn’t notice the 3 things I do: That the subject is slightly out-of-focus; there’s more than one brand logo in the photo; and that the “tint” of the photo is more purple than green (the other images so far for this brand have had a green tint).
How about this one?
This one is probably pretty easy, since earlier I mentioned part of the story being “cut off” at the top of the frame. In this photo, the gift bag behind the subject is cut off. The shadows in this image are also a little deeper than is optimal, at least in terms of being cohesive with my usual style.
But in all these photos, there is one clear subject, and the photo tells a story. When it comes to posting for our brands, or choosing the images for our websites, that’s really what matters!
Don’t hold back from posting images just because they’re imperfect. Better a photo that tells a story than no photo at all!
Did you find this helpful? Pin it so you never lose it! Then come hang out with me over on Instagram, @alexisthegreek.