in: Social Media
by: Katie Hellmuth Martin
The beauty of social media is that brands can speak through their images and get a big message across in seconds without their audience having to read much. Thanks to apps like WordSwag and StudioDesign, businesses of any size can create amazing imagery. The hardest part is deciding what the image will be. If you're not a designer, or if you don't have a photo studio with tons of props, you may say to yourself, "I am so limited! What can little old me do? I don't have an art studio with cool props - I work from my home and have a lot of dirty dishes in my sink!"
This line of thinking, my friends, is what is holding you back from playing with the big boys. Remove barriers like this, and you will be making a giant wave in the social media pool very soon.
This article shows you how I produced two very different quote images for two different companies from the same photo - that I took from the front porch of my house. I put them up on each of my businesses: Tin Shingle's Facebook and Instagram, and A Little Beacon Blog's Facebook and Instagram.
Ingredients To These Very Different Photos:
- 1 American Flag that waves proudly every day from the front porch of our house.
- 1 WordSwag app, which at this moment (5/28/15) is only available on an iPhone.
- Knowing your audience and vibe.
ORIGINAL PHOTO FOR MEMORIAL DAY
It was Memorial Day, and on social media that day, as well as on my street in my actual real life, I was seeing a lot of red, white and blue. Before I make an image that has to do with the present time, I always make sure to check the vibe in social streams and in my physical life to see what styles people are using.
I went with a flag. That I had on my porch! Buya. I knew I wanted big color because words work best on a solid background. To get big color, I did a close-up on the flag. I removed the flag from the pole thingy on my porch, and put my iPhone very close to it, making sure it focused first, and then took this picture:
1. MEMORIAL DAY MESSAGE QUOTE PHOTO FOR TIN SHINGLE
I created this photo for Tin Shingle's Facebook feed, and in keeping with our design aesthetic, wanted to keep it clean and crisp. I used the inversion tool in WordSwag that lets the colors of the photo bleed through the words, and then blanks out the rest of the photo. WordSwag gives you a lot of options to style your words with different fonts and lines. You don't pick the font - WordSwag does - you just decide if you like it or not. It's nice to have someone make decisions for you. After I clicked around several different style combinations, I went with the below. I loved how the "you" was in a solid blue background, and how "Us" was in a circle. It seemed like "Us" could either be U.S. for United States, or the collective us, as I intended it.
2. MEMORIAL DAY PHOTO FOR A LITTLE BEACON BLOG
A Little Beacon Blog's style can be a little more in your face and less elegant. Chunky words work well here, and I'm talking to a more focused group of local people in the region where I live. Ceremonies were going on around me, so I wanted to be sure this image looked extra patriotic.
So you see how liberating that was?
You have many photo options at your fingertips. For really good tricks about taking photos in a controlled lighting situation with a lightbox made out of coardboard, see our TuneUp class with award winning photographer, Evi Abeler!