One of the questions I often get asked is how do I keep coming up with ideas? And my answer is always “I’m just an ideas person”. And while that’s very true, it wouldn’t make a very good blog post would it? So I’ve decided to break it down and explain the process of how I plan and create content.
So first things first, it all depends on if the photograph is brand work or if it’s just for me. Quite often photographs that are just for me are ideas that have just come to me or things that I know will look nice. Things that please me. I’m always saving photos on Instagram and Pinterest and most of the time these help to spark ideas (I never copy directly, but if I’ve taken direct inspiration I will always credit the original poster!). I then use what’s around me, location (more on how to find pretty locations here), props etc and then give it a go! Sometimes it works and sometimes it really doesn’t! An outtake blog post needs to happen doesn’t it?
And then there is brand work. Now most of the time the brands I work with have quite loose briefs and are happy to take my lead. These are my favourite kind of brands! I take all the elements from the brief, brainstorm some ideas, I then go on and on and talk about the idea to my husband until I’m happy with the concept. For example, some brands are specific about having the product in direct view so I come with a concept that includes that. That’s where I go back to Pinterest and Instagram and find some inspiration. I quite often type a word relating to the idea, followed by “photography” and get some ideas that way!
So once I have the content. I then plan it into my schedule. Now I know not everyone likes this way of posting and like to be free. But we all know that I am a perfectionist and a control freak so I like everything to be planned out a week in advance. This is also because I only get to shoot at the weekends mainly due to my husband being able to look after the girls. As my grid follows what’s called a “checkerboard” grid (ie light background then a coloured background etc) I have to slot in the photographs to make my grid work.
I use an app to do this it’s called PLANN. I use the free version and it’s useful to get a good balance of colour and different photographs across my grid. In general I like to plan my grid on a Friday night so I know exactly the content I need to shoot over the weekend. I then put in placeholders. These will be photographs that are similar or screenshots I’ve taken just to get an idea of what my grid will look like.
As I photograph and edit my images I then replace the placeholders with my photos for the week. I usually like to have this done by Sunday evening so my images are ready for the week. Sometimes I end up photography, editing on the same day. It just depends on our life and my workload at the time.
And that’s it. I don’t use any apps to post to Instagram because I am a firm believer that you need to post live and be active for a bit. I wrote a post about that before, which you can read here.
I’d love to hear your process or get in touch if you’ve got any questions around this!