Welcome back to The Attic Life. Today’s post is on how to slay BOOKSTAGRAM like a pro. Now, if you religiously follow me on IG, you may have noticed that I love (fall in love synonym) experimenting. However, a lot of you have been asking me how I do what I do. So, I thought of making a blog post out of it and here it is!
First things first, I am not a PRO, but I do know for a fact that my IG game is growing each day. So, if you are looking forward to increasing tons and tons of followers overnight – You are at the wrong place. Books is a super-niche community and has been steadily growing on Instagram. You may find a lot of bookstagram doing real good on Instagram and some still in the struggling phase. But what’s fun without some challenge, eh?
I started Bookstagram (Book Photography on Instagram) about 1.5 years ago and each time (race against time phrase) I try my hands at photographing my TBR – I suck BIG TIME! Lights, Camera, Angles, Props, Books, Elements, More and More and More – this list is simply endless. I didn’t know where to start. But, lucky you, you have me. Since, I have done fair amount of mistakes while bookstagramming, I can tell you I am actually a PRO at making mistakes and realizing them! And now, I’ll teach you what not to do – to avoid these crazy mistakes.
NO! I don’t mean an actual photo booth – All I am asking for is reserving a spot for your lovely paperbacks. Running a bookstagram can be a pain in the A** and if you don’t have a good background to compliment your page, then the results will be futile.
So, start looking for the best spots at your home/backyard/verandah/balcony/ the mountains/ mid-air/ in the space/ on the moon (Well, umm, definitely not the last three, or four). Basically, a space that looks aesthetically pleasing. I have tried everything.
Marble Floors, Wooden Tables, Chairs, Craft Papers, Pillows and Duvets, Tapestry, Covers, Nature, Floral Patterns, Designs, etc. etc. etc. Now, every person has their own way of picturing their book photos – if you look at Abby’s Bookstagram @CrimeByTheBook, you will notice that Abby prefers a coffee shop, a fashionable look, some classy boots, coffee and a book in hand.
And if you look at Jen’s @BookBookOwl – she adds a soft touch of faux fur, glitter, some edits, vibrant colours and voila!
And you can check mine too – I prefer a themed profile with 3 poems, followed by 3 photographs (now, the new theme is a tad bit different – you can have a look at it. CLICK HERE!
Now, if you notice – each bookstagram account has its own specific element – I tried my hands on coloured ribbons (red, yellow, blue and green), some candles and a Currently Reading. Abby loves the coffee shop aesthetic and Jen places her books on a white wood table with faux flowers, luminescence added through LightX and loads of colourful books stacked onto each other.
Hence, look out for elements that look and feel similar to each other – once done, you can categorize your theme, it could be absolutely anything. my cousin sister, Vaishnavi, owns a bookstagram too and she has an amalgamation of monotony and colours. Now, if you notice, her coloured photographs are stacked one below another. That’s a theme she prefers to follow.
Once you are set on how you want your Book photographs to look like, get your hands on some lights and camera. A mobile camera suffices, I own a Galaxy S8 and it totally works for me. However, if you are looking for something as pretty as a bokeh effect then, you may have to resort to a DSLR camera.
If you have shallow lights at home, then opt for torch lights or umbrella lights or foil reflecting rings to add light to your photographs. I am a sucker at things like these – but here’s how lighting makes a difference.
Lights, Candles, Action That’s exactly how a novel begins… . . . . . . . . . . . . #quotes #quotesoftheday #path #kata #indoquotes #sajak #yangterdalam #indopostgram #friendsteam #fokusmodus #dagelan #kata2cewek #tumblrindonesia #cethar #ayatkhalili #belajardrcinta #pecanduluka #repost #followback #custom #lfl #followers #hot #model #modifikasi #modify #lll #racing #flf #likeforfollow
A less bright image may not look as appealing:
Darling, let me take (take with a grain of salt idiom) you to Scotland. So you can see what I can see in you… And love is… you and the highlands. And asking if youuuu will marry me, My beautiful, beautiful lady…. – Beautiful Lady, @alexgmusic7 . . This is one of my absolute favourite song. Oh btw, time for a fun fact. I am an ardent fan of @alexgmusic7 – as a person, as a music composer, and as a singer. I have been a part of her journey since 2012, when I probably heard her singing a cover of Macklemore. I have seen her go through anxiety, releasing her very first album and going on tours. I have been through her makeup-clad times to being-natural phase and know for a fact that she is such a beautiful person inside out and REAL! I was also extremely happy to see her come out and be aplomb about it. @notesontheway I definitely envy you! I hope I get to see/meet these two lovelies once in my entire life… Anyway, time for you to tell me about your favourite youtuber and why you like/love them so much. . . . . . . . #poetry #youtube #bookstagram #bookblogger #YTMusic #YoutubeMusic #MusicCover #BlogTime #HappinessisReading #musiclove #musiclover #originalsongs #lovetosing #alexgmusic #litmania #literatureloving #literary #inspirations #rolemodels #freelancelife #writerslife #lovemylife
Now, that you are done deciding a theme and the lighting for your Bookstagram, you need to work on angles – OH YES THEY MATTER – and thank god, that I realized it soon!
When I first started book-photography, I just (just in case meaning) clicked for the sake of it. I didn’t bother much about the angles or whether the books are colour coordinated, or if the background suits my personality. Honestly, all my book-o-graphy were BLEH! because, I didn’t consider prepping up in advance. And hence, the results were somewhat as disastrous as this.
Just some Monday noon shenanigans!! . . . . . . . . . . #bookfetish #readingisawesome #booktastic #booksworthreading #booksareagirlsbestfriend #readinglist #bookswag #readingisfundamental #readingrainbow #currentlyreading #amreading #classicbooks #beautifulbooks #bookshelf #bookshelves #bookcase #newbook #goodbook #reviewbook #mybooks #goodreads
And when you actually nail the angle, you can get a good click, I think this is decent enough:
Hola people, Yes, I am trying my very best to keep up with the #NovInBooks17 challenge. My entry for today is the GOT Books No. 2 and No. 5 for the longest reads ever…. I am still working my way up on GOT so this surely is going to take a long reading haul at my end. In the background: the rest 5 parts of the GOT series along with my bookish #shelfie QOTD: Have you read GOT ? Have you watched all the EPs? Comment below! I would love to give a BIG shoutout to All you GOT fans…. #gameofthronesbooks #georgerrmartin #rrmartin #dystopianreads #bookishreads
\ #bookisglee #lovemethebooks #booksmakemehappy #readingparadise #library #readtobreathe #ilovetoread #bookhoarder #tsundoku #bibliomane #bibliophile #bibliophage #bookdragon #lovebooks #readandgrow #readerstoleaders
See the difference? I guess visuals work better than words on this blog, lol.
Anyway, we are done deciding the theme, picking up elements, choosing our angles and getting the spotlight. Once all that is done, do not forget to take your caption into consideration.
Captions (Content) is the key. Be vocal about your thoughts, your captions may vary. At times, I write about books that I am reading, books that I bought recently, books that are in my TBR pile, the book in the photograph, a quote from the book in the photograph, something that happened in my life, something that reminds me from the books, a CTA (Call to action) maybe a QOTD (Question of the day) and answering it.
You may also actively participate in tags, the last time I participated in one was November 2017 and the hashtag was #NovInBooks17 – Although, I didn’t complete the tag, the participation in itself kept me sane and it added so much to my caption.
You can come up with your own tags too. There are a number of bookstagram accounts that have a number of tags running each month – look out for them… and don’t forget to participate.
What’s the next exciting part about this community? GIVEAWAYS AND REP SEARCH! I am not really into it at the moment, but @BookLoverVaish has been an active participant in Giveaways and Rep Search and have won quite a good number. Blame the stars, I haven’t won any yet, lol!
So, yes, that’s about it. Work on your visuals, add words to it, use HASHTAGS (appropriate ones) and have an amazing time be a part of the community.