Tag Archive for: business

Mastering Client Communication: A Guide for Food Photographers

In food photography, mastering client communication is just as crucial as taking the perfect shot. This guide will walk you through the essential steps to ensure seamless client interactions and create the type of photos that will leave your clients wanting more.

In food photography, mastering client communication is just as crucial as taking the perfect shot. This guide will walk you through the essential steps to ensure seamless client interactions and create the type of photos that will leave your clients wanting more.

Here’s a short article summary:

  1. Understanding Your Client’s Vision
  2. Communicating Your Photography Process
  3. Handling Client Feedback Gracefully

Step #1: Understanding Your Client’s Vision

Ask Detailed Questions About the Photography Project

I can’t stress enough how important it is to ask any question you might have, as silly as it might sound to you. Inquire about the desired style, mood, number, and type of deliverables, and so on to gain a comprehensive understanding of your client’s wishes, needs, and vision.

Visualize The Client’s Vision

Use all the information the client has given you to create a clear image of the end result in your mind. Create and share a moldboard with your client to ensure you are on the same page. As photographers, we are used to imagining things in our heads, but clients usually need a visual representation of what they will get. And this is what moodboards are for. I love using Canva to create moodboards for my client projects.

In food photography, mastering client communication is just as crucial as taking the perfect shot. This guide will walk you through the essential steps to ensure seamless client interactions and create the type of photos that will leave your clients wanting more.

Repeat Their Words

What I started implementing a while ago is repeating everything they said to make sure I understood correctly. The thing is, we often understand things differently from the other person, so repeating it and asking if you understood correctly is one of the most important things to make sure you will do what your client expects you to do.

Step #2: Communicating Your Photography Process

Outline Your Workflow and Set the Expectations

It is imperative for a food photography project to be successful and to have clear communication with your client. Ideally, you want the client to understand how you work and their involvement in the process. This includes timelines for all the project steps, your fee or any additional fees that may arise, and what they need to do at each step. This way, you will avoid unhappy clients.

In food photography, mastering client communication is just as crucial as taking the perfect shot. This guide will walk you through the essential steps to ensure seamless client interactions and create the type of photos that will leave your clients wanting more.

Step #3: Handling Client Feedback Gracefully

As photographers, it is our job to create photos as close to the client’s vision as possible. However, if you have done enough client photoshoots, there’s a high chance your clients weren’t always 100% happy. I like to approach feedback with an open mind, viewing it as an opportunity for improvement rather than criticism.

Sometimes, clients expect the photos to turn out in a way that is not ideal (they might not know it) or are impossible to do for the time frame, the budget, or it is physically impossible. It is very important to communicate this with the client in a respectful manner.


Mastering client communication is crucial for success in food photography’s competitive world. By understanding your client’s vision, communicating your process effectively, and handling feedback in a respectful manner, you can establish strong client relationships and create photos that they will love.

Implement these steps into your workflow to elevate your communication skills with your current and future clients.

And don’t forget to have patience when things don’t go as planned!

Want to get more photography clients this year?

Check my Client pitching email templates, which will help you create better outreach emails quicker.

4 Tips To Create a Killer Photography Portfolio

Uncover the secrets to an exceptional photography portfolio that will bring in trusted, high-quality clients and leave you confident AF.

Uncover the secrets to an exceptional photography portfolio that will bring in trusted, high-quality clients and leave you confident AF.

Uncover the secrets to an exceptional photography portfolio that will bring in trusted, high-quality clients and leave you confident AF.

I like to see the portfolio as a representation of the skills and style you have, which are there to not only show everyone your gorgeous photos but, most importantly, be the entry point for your clients to see whether you two are a great fit for each other.

Only if you look at it this way will you be able to get clients who will end up being happy about your work and who will keep returning to you for more and more photos.

In this article, I gathered 4 of my top tips to apply today so your portfolio starts shining and bringing in those wonderful clients.

So, let’s dive right in.

Become comfortable with uncomfortable

My students would often say they are stuck in a rut and don’t know how to step up their photography. And it’s always because they are afraid to do something differently.

Embracing discomfort in photography is what pushes you to grow as a creative. It’s a process, and because of that, it takes time, patience, and persistence. By continuously challenging yourself, you’ll not only improve your photography skills but also develop a unique style that sets your work apart from the rest.

Two exercises to practice being uncomfortable

  • Next time you schedule some time for a personal photoshoot, do some research beforehand. Ask yourself, which is the one area you want to be brilliant at? Is it a specific style of photography, the way you edit your photos, or a certain composition style…? Define it and find examples for inspiration. Then, do everything the same way as you would normally, except for that one thing you defined.
  • Keep a journal. Document everything you learned during a photo session that pushed you over your boundary. Write down everything from what you observed to what your feelings were.
Uncover the secrets to an exceptional photography portfolio that will bring in trusted, high-quality clients and leave you confident AF.

Get trusted feedback

Finding your mentor in the world of food photography can be a game-changer.

Seasoned professionals have an incredible amount of knowledge and insights, which makes it easier for you to determine what your focus should be and how you can create a portfolio that will talk to the kind of clients you want to be working with.

With the right guidance, you can refine your portfolio to perfection.

A great mentor offers constructive criticism, which is sometimes hard to hear. When I tell my students I’ll be brutally honest, they often get scared. But in the end, they are empowered to take action because they know exactly what to do.

So, don’t hesitate to seek out that guiding hand to improve your work and your photography portfolio. Your mentor can help you uncover nuances in your work that you might have missed.

Be extremely picky

It can be tempting to select photos we are personally fond of. And it’s hard to choose just a handful of images to display in your portfolio.

But the pickier you are, the more successful you will be at getting more clients and the type of clients you want to work with.

When choosing images for your portfolio, you need to consider these 3 things:

  • Is it the kind of work you want to be doing?
  • Are the photos showing your skills and versatility within your niche?
  • Do clients you want to be working with search for these types of photos?

If not, it’s a pass.

If yes, then you have to do the hard work narrowing down your selection so your portfolio is not overcrowded.

Uncover the secrets to an exceptional photography portfolio that will bring in trusted, high-quality clients and leave you confident AF.

Start and end strong

Think of your portfolio as a story. Every story has a banging beginning to captivate the reader or listener. Then it has a lovely narrative taking you through the story. In the end, it finishes with an unforgettable ending.

If you treat your photography portfolio the same way, you’ll have a much better chance for brands to actually check each image and see it as a part of a story.

Start with show-stopping photos, continue with your carefully selected photos, and then finish off with something unexpected and, again, show-stopping. 

Free Work Opportunities: How to Handle Them

As a creator, how do you handle the free work requests? Read further to see all the traps you need to avoid.

As a creator, how do you handle the free work requests? Read further to see all the traps you need to avoid.

If you are an Instagram influencer, content creator, or blogger, you’ve likely encountered situations where brands offer products in exchange for posts or content creation.

The debate over whether accepting these kinds of free work opportunities is okay is fierce. And I’ll leave the final judgment to you. Nevertheless, I want to share my thoughts on what situations is accepting ‘free work’ worth it and how to handle these non-paid opportunities so you can protect your work and keep it professional.

When is working in exchange for products okay?

As I said, it’s up to you to decide if merely having the product is worth it. But in my humble opinion, there are a few situations where unpaid work is acceptable:

  • When the work you do fits your brand
  • When the collaboration will be beneficial for your social media audience, blog readers, and so on
  • When having images with the product will help your portfolio become better and will attract more clients in the future.
  • When having this product or connection with the brand will help your career in a big way (and only a big way counts).
  • When the product you get is of a very high value, and you would purchase this or a similar product anyway. (In my experience, this is rarely the case!)

I can’t stress this enough, but even if you work in exchange for products, you still have to put effort, time, money, and creativity into your projects, so make sure that whatever deal you make, you gain something from that!

Setting the Stage for a Successful Collaboration

It has happened to all of us – a collaboration that left one or both sides of the party unsatisfied. I like to include some strategies:

  • Clear communication: Be sure to communicate in the greatest detail possible about how this will work. Don’t forget to talk about how many images/videos/reels/blog posts… You will produce, how you’ll include that product, and when exactly they are going out.
  • Product integration:  Clarify how the product will be integrated into your content, whether they will be mentioned or tagged, where, or even IF they can use the content you produced, and every little detail. 
  • Usage Rights: From the beginning, you need to let the brand know how the content you create can be used. Will you be the one sharing it? Can they share or repost it? Where can they use it, for how long, and whether they should credit you?
  • Logistics: Who will take care of shipping and import taxes or any other expenses that might arise?

To ensure the communication is clear and easy from the beginning, I created a pdf with clearly written how I work, what kinds of content I can produce in exchange for products, and how long after receiving the product I can post the content. Will you mention or tag them in the post and other vital information?  So they see that I’m serious and my work provides value! I have this PDF ready online and send a link to everyone who contacts me, so I don’t need to explain all these things repeatedly.

Upselling opportunity

Remember that even if you are in a situation where a brand asks you to work for a product, you have the chance to pitch paid work.

You can:

  • Say no to unpaid work and introduce your paid packages from the get-go.
  • Provide a part of the job for free and charge a fee for the rest. Let them know what you can do for free or how they can use the photos for free, and share your rates if they want extra work or an extra usage license from you.

Protect Your Free Work

We already talked that you should discuss the usage and every other important detail about the collaboration, but you should also write it.

A contract is necessary for every work you do, no matter if it is paid or not. You want to protect your work from being used in ways you do not agree with and get fair compensation for different uses.

Free work conclusions

Collaborating for products is work like any other, so you should treat it as such. It is essential to approach any work with professionalism and a business-oriented mind.

Clear communication, brand values, and guidelines are the foundation of navigating any business successfully.

To make sure these product exchange collaborations run smoothly, I advise you to let the brand know how you work and that you are obligated to protect your work while making sure both parties will be better off.

3 Strategies To Improve Your Client Pitching

Client pitching is absolutely necessary if you are an aspiring photographer looking to secure more gigs and expand your client base.

Client pitching is absolutely necessary if you are an aspiring photographer looking to secure more gigs and expand your client base.

The key to getting great photography clients is showcasing your skills and making a lasting impression on potential clients.

In this article, we are going to delve into three powerful ways to improve your pitching game and help you land those wanted photography gigs:

These strategies will help set yourself up for success in the competitive world of photography.

1. Be selective in your outreach

One of the most common mistakes photographers make is casting too wide a net when reaching out to potential clients.

Instead, shift your focus towards a more selective approach. Identify and reach out to the brands that resonate with your artistic vision and style. Clients are more likely to hire photographers who are genuinely interested in their brand and products because they will know you absolutely want the best for them. This not only demonstrates your commitment but also increases your chances of building long-term partnerships.

2. Present your creative vision through mood boards

As a visual creator, capturing a potential client’s attention requires more than just words. You can explain all you want about how you can help them, but most clients will have no idea how that translates to the actual photos. You need to visually convey your ideas.

A highly effective method is to create mood boards or vision boards. These boards provide a glimpse into your creative process and show how you envision their products in photos.

One of my absolute favorite ways to create mood boards is to use Pinterest to curate a selection of images for the mood board. Then create an on-brand simple mood board in Canva.

By giving a brand you are pitching a tangible representation of your concepts, you’re more likely to stand out and leave a memorable impression on potential clients.

What is more, they will know you wrote to them with a very clear idea to work with them in contrast to a ton of generic pitch emails they are most likely getting every day.

3. Craft a tailored portfolio

Your portfolio serves as your professional calling card, so it is crucial to tailor it to your target clients. 

Showcase a curated selection of photos, videos, or gifs that resonate with the specific brands you aspire to work with.

Consider the preferences and aesthetics of your ideal clients when selecting portfolio pieces.

Strive to include fewer images that reflect the style and values of those brands. This approach allows potential clients to envision your work aligning seamlessly with their vision.

Remember, it’s better to showcase a few exceptional pieces that truly resonate rather than flooding them with a page chock-full of unrelated photographs.

Securing photography gigs demands a combination of skills, strategy, and a personalized approach. Adopt these three strategies – targeted outreach, creative mood boards, and a tailored portfolio – and you’ll massively improve your chances of making a lasting impression on potential clients. 

Remember, it’s not just about the technical photography skills but also your ability to connect with brands and convey your artistic vision effectively.

As you implement these strategies, watch your photography gigs skyrocket and your brand thrive in the competitive photography industry.

5 Business Lessons I Learned On A Month-Long Vacation

Taking time off work can teach you valuable business lessons. In this article, I am sharing 5 things I learned over my four weeks away.

Taking time off work can teach you valuable business lessons. In this article, I am sharing 5 things I learned over my four weeks away.

This July, I spent a whole month in a beautiful spot in Slovenia with my family and friends. We go there every year. But this year was different. We spent an entire 29 days in a peaceful, relaxing spot in the mountains next to a lake.

But it not only ended up being a time to break away from every day, but also an incredible lesson for my personal and business life.

And these are the business lessons that I’ll be sharing with you today:

1. Good mental health is the foundation

Anxiety, stress, and feeling unmotivated. It is all affecting how we perform in our businesses. And it often comes from striving for more and end up surpassing our mental health abilities. This happened to me last year when an unforeseen amount of work landed on my shoulders, and I barely got out.

It got me thinking about how important mental health is in our personal lives and in all other areas, including business.

Taking a month-long vacation this year was a perfect decision for me at the stage of my business I am in. And I know not everyone can afford that. But simply anticipating when you will need some time off to reduce the stress in your life or in your business is crucial. And then, of course, claiming that time.

As a solopreneur, I am constantly present in my business. Even when I am not. Vacation is no exception. Your mind does what it does, and it can be super hard not to think about your business for an entire month. I should say impossible.

To minimize that, I involved myself in activities where I would forget about the rest of the world. It was a refreshing thing to do!

2. Happiness is now, not somewhere in the future

Every morning I woke up with a view of the beautiful high slopes of the surrounding Alps, and it simply made me happy. I was there in the moment, inhaling the fresh mountain air, enjoying every second of it.

And it got me thinking. Why are we often gazing into the future, forgetting that the moment that we should enjoy is right now?

And it gave me the perfect business lessons. Doing things you enjoy in a business is what will make a business owner continue going.

This whole thing inspired me to write a list of things I don’t like doing in my business and think about how to work around that. Is it hiring someone, pivoting my business so it doesn’t need that task, or something else?

I know we can’t always be happy and present (It just isn’t a real-life situation!). But be aware that we should focus on making our business and daily life match that as much as possible.

Who knows where we’ll be in a few years’ time? So why not enjoy this moment? Now.

3. You can’t always do everything yourself

Being in the mountains, we took a few hiking trips around the area. Walking with kids in the mountains in the summer’s heat requires many things in the backpack. Making the trips together with friends, we made sure to be pretty space-effective when it came to filling the backpacks. For example, we didn’t each bring out suncream, bug spray, or plasters,… We made sure only one brought it, which made our lives so much easier (and the backpacks so much lighter!).

If I relate this back to the business. It’s not always the best idea to do it all yourself.

Use the resources and connections to improve your and someone else’s business and less stressful. Borrow things, collaborate with colleagues, or hire help. And see what happens!

4. Never stop taking breaks

This vacation was super active. We were hiking, paddling, climbing, cycling, swimming… You name it; we did it.

And while I enjoyed all of these activities immensely, I also felt tired and didn’t feel like being active all the time. There were days when I would lie down all day, reading a book or taking super long naps. And I didn’t feel bad about it. If I relate back to my regular daily life, I almost never do that.

And it got me wondering, how is this different? Business forces you to be active and on standby all the time. What would happen if business owners simply took some time off and did nothing? Would the business fail? Probably not.

Taking time off not only makes your body relaxed and gives you the clarity and energy to continue going.

5. Be prepared for the unexpected

And unexpected it was.

During our last week of vacation, there were a couple of days of heavy rain, and a big chunk of the country was flooded. The area where we stayed was safe – flooded but safe. 

And so it was no longer a summer vacation. We had to pivot our activities to work in wet, cold weather (I can’t tell you how many times we came back from cycling soaking wet!). We had to change our plans for when we came home (To get to work.) to help our friends who were affected by the floods.

So the lesson learned here is that you can never be sure of something. Changes come when you least expect them in your everyday life and in your business. So it is essential to be mentally prepared that changes can happen, and they will. It can give you the mental capacity to deal with them easier when the changes come.

Taking time off work can teach you valuable business lessons. In this article, I am sharing 5 things I learned over my four weeks away.

I’ve been a photography business owner for four years now, and the business lessons I learned on my vacation this year really got me thinking. So hopefully, they made you think as well. Let me know in the comments!

Food Photography Equipment You Need

Let’s talk about food photography equipment because who doesn’t love a chat about what gear you need as a professional food photographer?

Throughout this article, I will show you what food photography equipment I currently use and what I’m using it. So you’ll get a good glimpse into what a professional photographer needs to create their stunning work. But remember that building any collection, whether prop or gear, takes time. I only had some of this gear when I first picked up my camera!

Let's talk about food photography equipment because who doesn't love a chat about what gear you need as a professional food photographer?

Note: This page may contain affiliate links to products and services I love to use and recommend.

Camera and lenses

Ever since I started photographing food, I’ve been using Canon. I am currently using a full-frame camera, Canon EOS 6D mark II. However, I started with a hobby crop-sensor camera, Canon EOS 600D, which I still use for some of my behind the scene and styling session photos.

The lenses I currently use are:

Canon 100m 2.8 macro

Canon 50mm 1.8

Canon 85mm 1.4

Canon 25-70mm 2.8

I used to have a Sigma 30mm 1.4 lens, which I adored and would recommend anytime since it produced beautiful photos and which survived a huge fall. However, it is only applicable to crop-sensor cameras.

Unsure how to use your camera? Be sure to read all about Manual Mode. Or you might want to read about camera angles and which lens to use when.

Natural light gear

Working with natural light usually requires a modifier of some sort. I mostly use my large 5-in-1 120x90cm diffuser to soften the light coming through the window. I love that it can use covers in 4 different colors to use as reflectors or black flags. Often I don’t need such a big reflector, which is when I use a smaller Neweer 60x90cm 5-in-1 diffuser/reflector.

Whenever I need to modify light with smaller modifiers, I love using a cardboard self-standing A3 reflector or a 5mm white/black foamboard which I can cut to the needed size. (Note: The foamboards in the links differ from what I use since I bought them locally, so I can’t guarantee the quality.)

Let's talk about food photography equipment because who doesn't love a chat about what gear you need as a professional food photographer?

Artificial light gear

I prefer using a flash over continuous light when working on stills. You can check my Artificial Light for beginners workshop if you want to know why and learn more about working with artificial light. 

Currently, I’m using three Quadralite Stroboss 60 C units, which are 60Ws speedlights. And I use the Godox SL60 continuous light for video and some stills.

Working with artificial light requires careful manipulation. There are many options out there. The main softboxes and umbrellas I currently use are:

Quadralite 60×60 softbox

Foldable Godox 60×60 softbox (for on-location shoots)

Godox 70×100 softbox

Soonpho 22×90 cm stripbox

Godox 120cm octagon umbrella

Studio gear – tripods and stands

I started with very basic tripods, which I still own and use from time to time, but I’ve fallen in love with my Manfrotto 058B Triaut Camera Tripod (discontinued). Having a sturdy tripod makes work so much easier. I’m using the tripod with the Manfrotto XPRO Geared 3-Way Head, which is incredible for making precise adjustments. 

For on-location shoots, I use the Neweer tripod with a central column with a ball head; however, I prefer a geared head from Manfrotto, which is much more precise and easy to handle.

For top-down photos or as a stand for modifiers, I’m using the Neweer C-stand.

Another piece of gear I love are the Neweer metal clamps.

Editing software

I use Adobe Lightroom Classic and Adobe Photoshop to edit my photos and DaVinci Resolve for video editing.

Join my free Lightroom webinar replay to learn a few tricks and some of my favorite Lightroom shortcuts and watch me edit a photo in Lightroom, 

Organizational software and more

In running a business, the organization of the process is crucial. I use Asana for my schedule, content, and business process organization.

How to build an email list as a creative or a food photographer

I had an open discussion about the future of social media with a colleague last week. It got us thinking about all the different platforms out there and how much energy it takes to constantly create new content without ever being sure that the right people will see it.

And we both agreed that there is one platform (not usually called social, but in a way, it is just that!), and that’s our emails.

You should start and build your email list no matter what you do. If you are a content creator or food photographer then this is for you.

Building an email list allows you to reach people genuinely interested in what you have to say and offer. If you post on Instagram (or any other platform), only a tiny percentage of your followers will see your post. But when you have an email list, in theory, all of your email community members should get your email. I’m saying this because deliverability is usually not 100%, but still, a number close to that.

You can see the big difference between an Instagram post and an email reach.

The people who get on your email list are there because they took the time to type in their name and email address, which takes much more time and effort than most people will give you on Instagram, TikTok, or any other social media platform. Which is why you will know that these are your people. And it is much easier and often more rewarding to speak to them than to write a post on Instagram. It feels more personal and will also be for our subscribers.

And that’s what we want to build our engaged communities.

Does this mean you don’t need social media and should only focus on email?

Definitely not. Social media gives you exposure to new people who would otherwise have a harder time finding you AND GETTING ON YOUR EMAIL LIST. Both of these together can be magical. So let’s see how you can leverage your current audience to build an email list.

How can you start an email list?

Simply put, an email list is only a list of email addresses you own (unlike your social media followers). 

Everything you need to gather emails is a landing page or a form on your website, which is why email newsletter providers are super handy, and they let you send emails to all your subscribers at once.

Besides, you need to incentivize people to subscribe to your email. A promise of what they get – an opt-in. This could be a PDF, an ebook, exclusive content, free courses and webinars, checklists, guides, and whatnot. Get creative with what you have to offer.

I’ve been using ConvertKit for three years now, and I love how simple it is to use and how time-saving all the automation features are. I can’t recommend it enough.

You should start and build your email list no matter what you do. If you are a content creator or food photographer then this is for you.

How can you grow your email list?

I’ve been building my email list since I started my blog in 2015, and it took a lot of work before I realized how to do it properly.

Unfortunately, once you’ve created an email list, you can leave it there. Instead, you need to find ways for people to see it.

Here are a few ways you can market your opt-in:

  • Adding forms to relevant posts and other places on your blog 
  • Sharing the landing page link to Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube… or any other platform you are using and do so regularly, not just once
  • Add the link in your bio on Instagram and your description on Pinterest.
  • Share it on Facebook groups when relevant.
  • Ask people you speak online and feel would benefit from your opt-in if you can send them the link (You won’t believe how effective that is!)
  • Be creative and constantly search for new places to share your opt-in!
You should start and build your email list no matter what you do. If you are a content creator or food photographer then this is for you.

What to include in your newsletters?

People sign up for your newsletter to not miss anything new you create. So share your latest blog posts, Youtube videos, podcasts, or any content you create. Let them know you have something new.

The good thing is that you can include whatever you are already sharing on social media. Not everyone sees those posts (as we already discussed!), and they definitely want to make sure to see them, so repurpose your Instagram content, especially when it resonates with your IG audience. That’s content your email community will want to see.

An email is also a place where you can be more personal, share stories you don’t share with others, and let your community be a little closer to you.

You can also tell them about your new books, courses, workshops, or whatever you offer that your community will find helpful.

ConvertKit also offers a paid newsletter, which is super helpful when you want to add even more content to your fans and have it delivered straight into their inboxes.

It’s easy for bloggers and educators to share an opt-in. But what if you’re a food photographer?

You can still have an email list even if your audience is food brands, restaurants, and other food-related businesses.

You will also need a very useful opt-in that will help their business and is somewhat related to food photography.

Those are businesses, so make sure to respect their time. It’s enough to send a newsletter to brands only a few times a year. Just enough to keep your name on top of mind in case they need a photographer and not think of you as spammy.

If this is you, I’m giving you a task today.

Think of three topics you can write to your food brand email list. What would they benefit from? What do you have to offer? Do you provide a new service, and how does it help brands? Can you share a photoshoot story to build authority or a behind-the-scenes that they’d enjoy? Or anything else they’d benefit from!

I hope this was helpful!

I’d love to hear your thoughts or worries about building an email list. Let me know in the comments!

And if you’re searching for a great newsletter provider, I can’t recommend ConvertKit enough. I moved from Mailchimp to ConvertKit three years ago, and it was such an easy move and an enjoyable experience to use the app. That said, choosing which provider is not as important as starting your email list today!


This article includes affiliate links, meaning I get a small commission if you purchase through the links provided on this page. Note that I only recommend products I love and enjoy, regardless of whether I get a commission!

How to create a cohesive Instagram feed

With this easy tutorial on how to create a cohesive Instagram feed you'll be able to create a beautiful eyecatching IG feed!

So I’ve been asked this questions so so many times and for me personally creating a cohesive Instagram feed is a mix of trusting what my eyes see and having a plan and theory behind all that.

I’m going to show you exactly how I plan my feed (when I’m not eyeballing it).

In fact, after I started really carefully planing my grid, I immediately saw that people liked what I was producing. I was gaining much more followers than before. After a while, I started to do planning less theoretically and trusted my own eyes more and more. I got used to how my feed looks and took me less time (and less thinking!) to create a feed that flows.

So if you’re having trouble making your feed consistent and cohesive, I suggest you start with theory (that’s where this article comes in) and after a while, you’ll see that you’ll do it more and more spontaneously. It’s going to become second nature.

It’s hard to start, when your feed looks all over the place, right?

Start with planning at least 9 images ahead (12 or 15 are even better). This way you’ll actually be able to see how your new and shiny feed will look like!

So here are the steps that you need to take in order to create a stunning visually pleasing and cohesive feed:

  1. Use a planning software
  2. Choose a style and color palette
  3. Choose what type of content you’ll share
  4. Decide on the layout of all the different types of content
  5. Color theory and shapes are super important
  6. Consider negative space and angles
  7. Perfect is not always the best
  8. Use the highest quality photos you can.

Use a planning software

There a few ways you can plan your grid online with software. The ones I like are Later and Planoly (not sponsored). They are free for les than 30 posts a month. You can use them only for planning the grid or you can post from their software as well. You can use either their app on your phone or plan via their website. Either way, that’s probably the easiest way to start planing how your grid will look like.

Choose a style of the grid

Do you prefer darker photos, lighter photos, do you like everything very colorful, do you love monochromatic images, desaturated, warm, cold, vintage, modern, natural, a specific color palette… so many styles and colors to choose from.

Choosing one style doesn’t mean you can’t integrate other styles too, but one or maximum of two is the best.

Choose what type of content you’ll share

Will you be sharing only photos or you’ll also share videos, text, graphics… you should consider all the content you want to share with your audience and what type of content they’ll appreciate. Just make sure they all look great together. If you’re including any graphical elements, thy need to work togeher as well and they should match the style of other content in your feed.

Decide on the layout of all the different types of content

If you are sharing more than one type of content then it is essential to decide how often you’ll share each type of content. For example, if you’re sharing photos and text, then you could share a one-to-one ratio, so every second day you’ll share text and all other days a photo. You can consider some other ratios too. I love 6 to 1. Six photos and one text image. Be creative!

Color theory and shapes are super important

When I plan my Instagram grid, I always take into consideration the colors in the photos. I usually have one or two main colors in a photo. When I plan a grid, I’ll place images with the same main color on the different parts of the grid so they don’t all touch each other. I post mostly dark images but I include brighter ones as well and I follow the same principle there too.

Same goes with shapes. If I post a photo of a round cake in the middle of the frame, I won’t post other images with similar shape so that they fall in a line (unless it’s a diagonal). I also don’t want to squeeze them all in one corner.

One way to creatively use color theory is to have a color-coordinated grid, where you post one color only for a specific number of days and then continue with another.

Consider negative space

Balance is the magic word when it comes to a cohesive Instagram feed. Try to think of your image as having weight. Some weigh less (meaning they are less busy), some weigh more (busy images with big elements or multiple elements). Now imagine your feed being an old fasioned kitchen scale. You should place the images in your feed so that your scale is in balance. Just like with colors and shapes you need to consider placing images with same ‘weight’ in oposite parts of the grid to balance things out.

The same goes for angles. I post photos from different angles in my feed and that also takes some thought. Just like, with color, shapes, and negative space, I like to spread mix photos taken at different angles so that they don’t compete with each other.

Perfect is not always the best

Please, don’t go and follow these things I just wrote about very very strictly. Like I wrote in the beginning, sometimes something will look better and you won’t necessarily have a clear explanation. Follow your gut and your creativity.

Use the highest quality photos you can.

You might say, but I’m not a professional yet, I don’t have high-quality images. It doesn’t matter, use what you have, but be picky at the same time. Choose the best photo you have and if you’re unsure and decide between two or three photos, use stories to ask your followers. As an IG user, I can say that I love voting and people really do love engaging in things like questions and anything that requires their input in the stories. So why not ask your followers? This way you’ll also learn what type of content they like seing from you. Win-win!

It doesn’t stop at a cohesive Instagram feed

While creating a cohesive Instagram feed takes some preparation and careful planning it’s not the only thing to do if you want your IG channel to attract followers (aka ideal followers). One of the most important think about running an IG feed is being personal and showing who you are. Poeple love following real people not machines!

Let me know if you found this useful in the comments below or on my IG.