Building your brand as fashion blogger is an exciting time. You’re pursuing your dreams, getting your message out, and learning a ton of new things. Everyday is so different. You’re creating content, updating social media, and making new to-do lists. With all of the photos you’re taking, you’re probably curious about cameras.
Photography is the biggest part of your brand. It showcases everything about you – who you are, what you do, your style, and your editorial focus. A camera is central to the success of your blog…and you might even be wondering if you should upgrade from your smartphone to a “professional camera”.
There's a great saying that the best camera is the one you have with you. It’s so true! When inspiration strikes, the most important thing is to capture the idea as quickly as possible. As an artist and photographer, I use both my iPhone and an Olympus E-M10. Today I’ll discuss the advantages of each, and how I use them at work.
Using Your iPhone…
Smartphone manufacturers have really stepped up their camera game. I currently shoot with an iPhone 6 and it produces sharp, colorful images. I’ve taken some of my best photos on my iPhone because of its portability.
Always having a camera with me has improved the composition and artistry in my work while using this device. In fact, many of the photos in my book, Ineffable | Vol. 1 Photography, were taken with my iPhone. It’s portability allowed me to take some great spontaneous shots. And, the resolution actually worked for my publication.
Other phone manufactures have great cameras, too. Get comfortable using yours. You’ll develop a preference for certain types of photos using your phone. I prefer to use my iPhone for the following:
- Documenting my artistic process
- Selfies for editorials or branding purposes
- Supplemental outdoor shooting while hiking
The focus of my blog has developed over time. While I still write about fashion, many of my posts explore my artistic practice. Using my iPhone to photograph the stages of my paintings has helped me grow tremendously. It allows me to revisit the process and write about it.
Posting these stories allows people to understand my work and connect with me. This rich dialogue would otherwise be lost without my iPhone. Consider documenting a behind the scenes aspect of growing your brand through photos. It can be a great addition to your posts.
Not ready for a professional camera? That’s ok! There are many great add-ons to enhance your iPhone photography. Clip-on lenses, tripods, and selfie sticks are good investments. They allow some variety to the composition and effects of your photos while being budget friendly. I have a set of clip-on lenses by Zeso. For $18, you can experiment with fisheye and macro lenses.
…Or Using A Digital Camera (such as the Olympus E-M10)
Portability was the most important factor when I was shopping for a camera. I spoke with professionals and did lots of research. When you’re ready to the leap and invest in a professional camera, you’ll need to decide between a traditional DSLR or a mirrorless camera. A DSLR has a mirror inside that reflects light through the lens of the camera. A mirrorless camera allows light to pass right through the lens. Both take great photos, but the mirror in an DSLR adds additional weight.
The Olympus E-M10 is mirrorless. I purchased it because of its lightweight body, and the variety of interchangeable lenses. I never feel weighed down by my gear. I also have greater creative freedom in controlling the composition, lighting, and shooting speed. It definitely surpasses my iPhone for the following:
- Fashion editorials
- Street photography
- Macro shots
- My finished paintings
- More artistic self portraits
I currently have a 14-42 mm lens, which has a great wide angle for shots. There are many more advanced lenses available, but this suits most of my needs.
Pros & Cons of Each
Both cameras are great for different uses. To recap, here are some of the pros and cons of each device:
- Easily accessible
- Autofocus allows user to point-and-shoot for wonderful photos
- Resolution is generally good enough for most blogging and social media purposes
- On-phone apps allow for easy editing and uploading of photos
- Limited ability to control focus
- Poor zooming capabilities
- No control quality or amount of light in the frame
- Not fast enough for action, editorial, or street photography
- Great zooming capabilities with professional lenses
- Ability to control lighting and contrast
- Sharper images
- Produces larger image files for quality printing
- Faster shooting speeds
- Learning curve for using all of the settings
- File size are much larger and require more storage space