Every savvy blogger user knows that a gorgeous, consistent feed is the key to Insta success. But what if your life isn’t all peonies and paperbacks. Do you fake it? Only post images of your children when they are dressed in your website colours? Most people don’t live in a show home and only dress their kids in one colour pallet, so how can you get a consistent feed without pretending to be something you’re not?
Here are a few tips to help you get more consistency in your feed
Start with your family
Take a few moments to sit and think about who you are as a family. Jot down any words that come time mind. E.g. energetic, adventurous, beach loving family, or playful, snugly family that like to spend time at home.
And now your photos
Gather together some of your favourite photos and write down some words that describe them e.g. bold, colourful and busy or muted, minimalist and calm. Hopefully you should see a theme coming through.
Colour is key to a consistent feed, but don’t worry if you don’t have a single colour that stands out in your life, you can just use groups of colour instead, e.g. brights, pastels or neutrals. Try and stick to the same colour pallet for a consistent look. If you can’t commit to a colour pallet for all your feed, have a colour pallet for a group of photos (ideally 9 or more) and then change. This will make your images flow better.
Pastels Neutrals Brights
You can audit the colours in your current theme by using an app such as Year Of Colour. This will show you what colours you currently use. If most of the colours are similar then your feed is more likely to be consistent.
Now Choose a Theme
Now you’ve had a look at your life and your images, you can use the words you wrote down to create a theme for your Instagram. A theme is how you want people to see your brand, it should tie in with how you want people to see your blog. So if your blog is about real life parenting, that’s what your Instagram is about too. Your theme doesn’t have to be about design, it could be about how people feel. E.g. playful, friendly, relaxed, supportive.
Think about Composition
You can make your Instagram more consistent by being paying attention to composition. Here are a few tips to improve your composition:
- Crop in close to avoid background distractions
- Try taking the photo from a few different angles and see which one works best
- Try zooming out and taking the image with negative space around it
- Make sure you’re focusing on the most important part of the image
Lighting, lighting, lighting
Lighting is a big one! Whatever theme you’ve chosen, your images need to be clear and sharp and for this you need great lighting. Use natural lighting wherever you can as it is so much better than artificial light.
- In bright sunlight, make sure there are no harsh shadows on faces. You can do this by turning your subject around so that the sun is not directly in their face.
- A few hours before sunset is a great time for taking photos. The light is softer and beautifully golden, it makes for gorgeous images.
- Make sure your children have light in their eyes. They’re called catch-lights and you can do this by having your child face the light – e.g. a window, or by looking up slightly outside.
- Indoors, stay close to a window and don’t turn on the overhead light.
Plan our your grid before you post
Be Selective About What you Post
If you have an image that you really like but doesn’t go well with your grid, hold off posting it until it will fit better or just share it on your blog or another social media instead. If the rest of your feed is consistent it will stand out like a sore thumb. Alternatively, post it as the second image
Editing – The Cherry on the cake
I often hear people say that they need help to edit their images to get a consistent look, but honestly, editing is not as important as the rest of the process, such as composition and lighting. Photography is 80% of the battle. That being said, editing can help make your images cohesive. Make sure you use the same filter or group of filters on all your images to keep them consistent. If you use Photoshop or Lightroom to edit, stick to the same actions or processes. e.g. adding contrast or making your images more vibrant.
Some great editing apps to try:
- A Colour Story
- Lightroom Mobile