I love Instagram. I can spend hours browsing, I always get inspiration from others, and I also love high quality, well thought out pictures. As most people know, in order to gain followers on Instagram it is best to have an on-brand Instagram feed that has high-quality photos and to post consistently. Some people post images all throughout the day on Instagram and I’m always wondering how they have the time, right? I don’t have time to stage the perfect picture or bring out my DSLR camera every time I want an Instagram picture. So I have a found a way to streamline my Instagram process and a way to use my iPhone to take pictures that look good enough on Instagram. I hope you find these Instagram Hacks useful.
Instagram Hack #1: Foam Core Background
Use white or colored foam core for a background. Foam core is super cheap, I picked mine up from Target and I use that to place my props on all the time. Foam core is easy to just lay down super quick and snap a picture and you get a nice and simple background. I usually use white foam core because my Instagram feed uses a lot of white space but if you have a colorful theme then you can select different colored foam cores to match your branding. I will also use extra foam core pieces to act as reflectors to help cut down on the shadows.
Instagram Hack #2: Scarf or blanket
Another quick way to add a little texture or dimensions to your photo is to add a scarf or blanket as part of your backdrop. These are two items that are usually handy and if they match your brand then you can definitely use them as a prop.
Instagram Hack #3: Scrapbook Papers
If you go to Michael’s or Joanns you will see their huge selection of scrapbook papers and these can be great to use as backdrops. You can have plenty of different options and different colors, so matching your brand colors should be fairly easy. You can keep these stacked away for when you need a quick backdrop.
Instagram Hack #4: Printed out backdrop
Now for my favorite idea for a backdrop is what I use most of the time. I will design and print out my own backdrops for pictures. Some times it is difficult to find something that will go along with your Instagram feed or some times you don’t have anything on hand for a backdrop. However, when I was in a pinch, I decided to design my own backdrop. I created one with “plus signs” which matched my branding and I created a pattern and I printed it out. Here is a picture:
I used illustrator to create the icon and then I duplicated it until it made a pattern that I liked. After I created this pattern, I realized that you can do this for so many other patterns so I tried a marble pattern and I tried a grid pattern. I have a printer that can print 13″ x 19″ so I actually ended up producing a really large image that I can lay props on but you can do this with any size paper that you have at home.. Most home printers can print legal size documents for the max so you can make your image 8.5″ x 14″ Inches if you have that size paper. I suggest printing on photo paper because it will have a better print quality but you will have to shoot with no flash.
If you don’t have illustrator or Photoshop, this might be a little harder to create the pattern ( I haven’t tried to achieve this effect in Canva) so I decided to create three FREE backdrops for you. YAY. All you have to do is print them out and then start styling them.
Download the free backdrops by getting access to Pxl Place –
Instagram Hack #5: FaceTune
So now here is my final secret. You might be thinking “why do we need a facetuning app?”, but I actually use this app in a different way then it’s intended purpose. You might have taken a picture on your iphone, in natural light, but then when you go to post you realize the color is slightly yellow or off-colored or dim. When this happens, I like to bring my photo into the FaceTune app and use the “whiten” tool which is originally meant for whitening your teeth. Now you can use your fingers to swipe all over the picture to make any white colors, whiter. So this will make your photos whiter and brighter. Instead of looking like you are stuck in a dark area, you can make it look like you have the best lighting and higher quality pictures. It does cost $3.99 on iTunes but that’s a lot cheaper than studio lights and a DSLR. 🙂
Here is what a before and after looks like:
Awesome, right?! It is so easy and I love the way the picture looks when I am done. So now it is your turn. Print out the free downloads and start taking pictures. If you post on instagram, use the hashtags #pxlplace and #pxlsdesignco.