August 9, 2019

FAQ: Creative Content 101

My most frequently asked question tend to revolve around my content - from how I capture to how I edit - so today I want to cover all things creative content creation! I've mentioned this before, but 2018 is when I started to truly invest in my content - both from an effort and financial perspective. Three cameras, five lenses, a billilion presets and endless late-night tutorial sessions later, I'm finally at a place where I know, definitively, who I am as a content creator. It's taken a while, but I feel that I've finally built that solid "visual identity" that differentiates me in today's crowded social space. I guess what I'm trying to say is that everyone's creative journey is different, but I'm hoping that these tools/tips help you navigate yours.

So let's dive right in!

Who takes your pictures? 
These days, mostly my brother. Fun fact: my brother was my very first photographer when I started in the space. Last year I worked with Ashley Gallerani on a weekly basis which helped me establish my visual identity. Now that I know exactly what I like and don't like when creating content, I've ventured out on my own for a few months and have been working with my brother again. God bless his patience because I can be *so specific* about my vision. My number one tip is to try shooting with one or two people max. This will help create consistency in your content, not to mention you'll definitely feel more comfortable/confident in front of the camera. 
What camera gear do you use?
I was a Canon gal for years, but switched over to a Sony A7iii this year and I'm loving it so far. My goal was to find a full frame camera that was light enough for travels and easy to "understand" so that whoever I was with could get the hang of it. In terms of lenses I mostly use the Zeiss Batis 25mm f/2, the Sony 16-35 mm f/2.8 or the Sigma 20mm f/1.4 art lens. These photos were taken with the latter. 

When choosing a lens I'd keep in mind the medium through which you'll display your content. If you're creating content for Instagram, always keep in mind the "IG crop" and leave enough space above/below whatever it is you're capturing. This can be harder to achieve with a more cropped-in lens like a 50mm. Just something to think about!

It's important to call out that you don't need all of this fancy equipment to capture a great photo. If you're on a tight budget, play around with your smart phone or an "entry level" camera. You'd be surprised what those babies can do! In my opinion, it's all about angles and editing. Once you have those down you're golden!

How do you edit your photos?
I currently use @suzyshattuck's presets on Lightroom. She has two styles - I generally use her Signature Preset Pack for desktop. Use the code 'CHELSEA' for 10% off!

In the past I've used @tezza's and @emilyvartanian's - love both of theirs, as well! If you're not sure how presets work, here's a quick tutorial for ya.
How do you create a "feed theme"?
This is a bit of a polarizing topic because some creators could care less about the whole "feed aesthetic" while others obsessed over it on a daily. I tend to teeter the line here - it really depends when you ask me. My advice to get you started on a "consistent feed" is using the same preset or editing tools and picking 3-4 colors to wear and/or shoot around over time. This will help you create a nice aesthetic flow in your feed. 

How many times a week do you shoot?
This really depends on the season and work demand. I generally try to keep it to 1-2x a week, max, but if I have a ton of campaigns to bang out, I'll adjust accordingly. For me, batching content is key in making sure I avoid burn out from shooting every day.

That's all for now, folks! Hope these answers help you to create and share your best work. If you have any other questions you'd like for me to cover, I'm always available via DM!

xo,
Chels

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3 comments

  1. Ahhh its like you read my mind! I have been dying to figure out what lenses to pick for my next shopping spree, and currently I have an 18-35mm f/1.8 and a 50mm f1.8. I have a Nikon though so not as many options. Love getting an idea of what you use! Do you have suggestions on when you use the different types of lenses? Like will you switch lenses in one photo shoot, or you know what type of lense to use for the specific campaign?

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  2. Totally! Depending on the specific image I'm trying to capture, sometimes I'll switch out my lens mid-shoot. It's all about know exactly what you want to transmit and how you want to do it!

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