Interior photography tips: How to showcase your home for Instagram
Interiors are one of Instagram’s top categories, with millions of photos and thousands of hashtags to help us find inspiration for our next renovation project.
But, when you’ve nailed your dream home, how do you go about getting your own Insta-worthy snaps?
Styling your perfect room is one thing; capturing it on camera can be a whole different challenge.
There’s no doubt it’s a skill, but the good news is we believe it’s one anyone can master!
We’ve gathered our top interior photography tips for the perfect ‘gram, and got some expert advice from top interior blogger Lucina Mitra, who shares her style on Instagram at Nest Twenty Eight.
Set the scene
To stop people in their scroll, you need to create a photo that speaks to people.
When you stage your home for Instagram, consider the feeling that you want to inspire, and what features of your room are going to achieve that.
Make sure all mess is tidied away, and add/remove accessories if necessary to get the look just right.
Put the finishing touch on your shot with the perfect caption that matches the vibe.
‘My top tip for taking insta-worthy pictures is, firstly, to set the scene; what do you want to get across? Cosy? Modern? Industrial? Make sure your styling fits in with this theme and don’t be afraid to experiment with different textures. A colour pop or two will also get you noticed!’
The camera on your smartphone should be enough to start experimenting with shots, but if you’re ready to take it to the next level there are a few pieces of kit that could help give your photos that little extra something.
Invest in a DSLR camera and a wide angle lens to help you capture more of your space, and, if your home is particularly dark, you may also find that a proper camera helps to improve the brightness of your images.
Many people struggle to take completely straight photos with a handheld camera, and a wonky angle is often particularly noticeable in interiors photography.
Basic tripods are fairly inexpensive and can help you eliminate the need for frame adjustments in editing, as well as opening up new angle possibilities.
Get the right light
As a rule, natural light is your best friend when taking photos of your interiors.
Artificial light can corrupt the colours and shadows of your room, often casting an unnatural yellow or blue tone, while natural light will allow the space to shine!
Consider which way your room faces and where the best sources of natural light are.
When you take your photo, make sure the light is behind you to avoid glare, and pay attention to the times of day when the light is best. The general consensus is that the ‘golden hours’ of early morning or late afternoon are the optimum times to get your shots, but by experimenting you’ll discover which times work best in your space. It may be different for each room, depending on the way your house faces, so you may need to try out a few different times to work out the perfect one for each space.
Work the angles
Once you’ve got your lighting sorted, consider your angles. It’s likely that you’ve got certain parts of your room that you really want to showcase, and the odd messy corner you’d rather hide away.
Straight-on shots are often more eye-catching and attract more likes than photos taken on an angle, so bear this in mind when photographing your home for Instagram.
Consider the lines running through your frame and align your camera with them to keep the composition clean and organised.
‘Whole room photos are fab, but you can also do a vignette of a room, too. I always make sure I look around the edges and check that my framing is straight for a crisp and aesthetically pleasing finish; some of my most popular pics are ones where I’ve focused on one wall or corner of a room as you can really see the details.’
Find your focus
Every winning Instagram photo should have a focal point of interest, so if you have a statement wall or feature furniture piece you poured your heart into, now’s the time to let it shine!
A bold pattern, pop of colour or unique feature is guaranteed to grab attention in your shot, so find your room’s standout feature and make it the star of the show.
Don’t forget to frame your image; the layout of your room should provide ample opportunity for this.
Using architectural elements like doorframes, windows and walls works well, but anything with a straight edge can be used to frame the focal point of your room; think rugs, floor lamps and tables.
Experiment with levels
Placing elements at different levels brings an extra dimension of interest to your photos, drawing the viewer’s eye to different points and inviting them to spend more time exploring your shot.
Build around your focal point with accessories like plants, wall-mounted artwork or furniture at different heights to fill out the landscape of your photo.
However, be wary of over-cluttering. You want your room to look lived in, but over-accessorising can make your shot feel messy and overwhelm the viewer, especially on Instagram where most people are browsing on a small phone screen.
Stick to a few choice pieces, and allow for enough negative space that your audience can really notice and appreciate the details.
Make use of the best photo apps
Of course, however good your original shot, photos can usually benefit from a little editing!
Be sure not to overdo it, as you still want your photo to be realistic, but small touches like cropping, highlighting and tweaking the contrast can do wonders to perfect your shot.
Best photo apps for iPhone and Android
Platform: iOS and Android
We’d be missing a trick if we didn’t mention Instagram’s in-app editing tools. The range isn’t all-encompassing, but if you don’t need heavy editing it might be all you need. Bypass the pre-set filters, which will most likely be too heavy-handed for interior photos, and make use of the in-app exposure, colour and sharpening tools.
Platform: iOS and Android
Snapseed is a popular photo editing app particularly among amateur or beginner photographers, as it combines a wide range of editing tools with an easy-to-use interface. There’s also a handy healing tool to edit out unwanted elements you might have overlooked in your original shot.
Platform: iOS and Android
While pre-set filters are usually excessive for interior shots, VSCO is known for its gorgeous range of filters that are much more subtle. This makes it an ideal photo app for beginners who still lack confidence with manual editing, and you can even adjust the strength of the filter to your own taste.
Adobe Lightroom CC
Platform: iOS and Android
The photo editing giant has many programs for tweaking your content, and Adobe Lightroom CC allows you to take, edit and share photos all in the same app. It also auto-syncs images via Adobe Creative Cloud, so if you use Lightroom on your desktop this is probably the most practical app for you.
One of the most long-running editing apps, Camera+ offers a wide selection of possibilities that are lacking from iPhone’s native camera app. You can shoot your photos in the app with exposure and focusing adjustments at your fingertips, as well as the option to shoot in RAW instead of JPEG for additional editing capabilities.
Feeling ready to start photographing your home for Instagram? Practice makes perfect, so don’t be afraid to play with different angles, lighting and accessories to find your best shot. Start posting, and learn what your audience likes - each post will teach you more about the content your followers love most!