7 Tips To DIY Your Personal Branding Photography For Your Creative Business

Oh, choosing the right photos for your small business can be hard. And if you’re looking for them on free photography websites? You’ll probably look like the gazillion businesses out there that are doing the same thing.

So what’s a good solution for that? Taking your own brand photography. In that way, you can plan the photos that you need beforehand, instead of wasting hours looking for an image that might fit your personal branding.

(You can purchase styled stock photo bundles too, on websites like this one. But we’re not talking about that today.)

But how do you even start taking your own brand photos? Well, girl, you’re in the right place, because today I’m sharing with you my top 7 tips to DIY your personal branding photography in a fun way.

Grab your cup of coffee (I have mine here ☕) and let’s start. Ready?

(Psst! Don’t have time to read this now? You can pin it for later. If you also want to share this page, I’ll deeply appreciate it.)

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Tip 1: Find your brand photography style first

Here’s the thing: if you don’t know how you want your brand photos to look on your website, you’ll probably shoot photos randomly. And we don’t want that.

So my number 1 tip for you? Find your photographic style first.

The idea is that you should find a photography style that:

  • Connects you with your audience.
  • Helps you communicate your message in a clear way.
  • Makes you have fun and feel beautiful (BTW, you are beautiful) while taking professional photos.

Tip 2: Plan your brand photo shoot

This is pretty important. If you get to the day of the photo shoot, not knowing what kind of photos you’re going to take, you’ll lose precious time and you’ll probably get frustrated, thinking that this isn’t for you.

Here are a couple of things that you have to plan before the day of your brand photo shoot:

  • Clothes, makeup, and accessories.
  • Props.
  • Backgrounds.
  • Locations.
  • Equipment.

Tip 3: Create a shot list

A shot list is a detailed list where you specify the kind of photos that you’re going to take on your next photo shoot.

For example, you can write how the scene looks like, what you’re going to wear, props that you’re going to use, and the hours when you’re going to take your branding photos.

Essentially, this is the last part of planning a brand photo shoot. This is what I do before taking my own brand photos at home or in selected locations, using my own shot list.

Tip 4: Get a tripod and a remote control

If you feel self conscious when you’re having your photo taken, then connecting your camera or your smartphone to a tripod and a remote control is a good solution to avoid that. And if you want to experiment taking photos while nobody is watching you, then this is a must.

This is how I took my own profile photo that I use on all my social media accounts (honestly, I’m not wasting, ahem, spending time on social media lately).

I moved the furniture a little bit at home, sat beside my floor to ceiling window in the living room, and placed the tripod and the camera in front of me.

Here are a couple of images that I took in the same way (the branding belongs to the first version of this website, but I’m leaving it because it’s cute).

Example of three images of myself that I took with a camera, a tripod, and a remote control: drinking coffee and looking at postcards; working on my laptop while drinking coffee; and reading a book.

Tip 5: Find the best hours to take your brand photos with natural light

This is super important. Natural light will make a great difference in the way your brand photos look. And you won’t need to spend money on expensive lighting equipment.

If you want to take photos at home, you need to identify the areas of your house where you get more natural light, and the hours when you get better light.

For example, I have a floor to ceiling window in the living room where the sun shines all morning, so that’s where I take photos at home in the morning until midday (the hours vary depending on the season).

I also have a marble kitchen countertop with a little window, facing the morning sun. If I want to use it as a background, I take those photos in the morning, when there’s enough natural light, but the sunlight isn’t shining directly on the kitchen countertop.

Little envelope with a card with the word “Beautiful”, emerald ribbon, printed photos in a Polaroid style, and a perfume, over a silver silk background in the morning light.

Tip 6: Create your own photography props

If you create your own props, your photos will automatically have something that nobody else will have.

For example, I created my own props with my photos from my business and from my travels. I designed postcards, Polaroid-style photos with my brand colors as the borders in the photos, photo booth strips, and mood boards.

I also printed my own (prior) brand patterns that I created with my doodles. I did this in Affinity Designer (that I can’t use anymore because my laptop runs on Linux now), but you can also use apps like Canva to design your own photography props.

If you’re going to design your own photography props, choose a thick paper to avoid bending (like 250 grams or 300 grams paper).

Handmade watercolor palette, a cute notebook, and printed custom photos, over a wooden table.

I also printed the covers of my (prior) digital products and freebies, and some interior pages, so I can include them as props when I’m taking styled desktop images, workspace photos, or behind the scenes images for my personal brand.

If you sell handmade products, you can use your own packaging materials in your branding photos. If you offer services, you can print some pages from your client’s welcome magazine.

Tip 7: Tell a story with your brand photography and make your audience feel something

Taking brand photos isn’t about shooting random images.

Personal branding photography is about telling the story of your personal brand in a way that will make your audience connect with you and feel something.

Do you want them to feel inspired? (That’s what I aim to do with my brand.)

Do you want them to get a friendly vibe?

Do you want them to feel close to you, like they know you?

That’s why your photos don’t have to be perfect. Yes, it’s important to pay attention to details, because they make a difference in the way your images look. But again, that doesn’t mean that your photos have to look perfect.

My photos don’t look perfect (yes, I’m a photographer, and I said that. Gasp!) And that’s totally OK.

But my brand photos tell a story. They make my brand feel friendly, relatable, and inspiring. And that, my friend, it’s what you have to aim for in your brand photos.

For example, instead of trying to take images with no shadows, play with light and shadows.

White coffee cup, washi tapes, and printed custom photos, over a marble coffee table. The afternoon light filtering through the curtains in the background creates light and shadows over the coffee table.

Instead of resisting the wind when you’re taking photos outdoors, let the wind play with your hair in a couple of photos.

Instead of trying to take photos near sunset when there are no clouds, try to take some of them when there are lots of clouds. (In my opinion, cloudy sunsets are the best.) You could get photos like the one below.

Giselle’s silhouette on a cloudy sunset, in front of the Río De La Plata in Colonia. In the background, there are crepuscular rays filtering through the clouds.

Bonus tip 8: Have fun

Honestly, I think this is the most important part of taking brand photos. Or any kind of photos.

When you have fun, you get the best photos, no matter the camera that you’re using.

I hope you found this inspiring!

What is stopping you from taking your own brand photography? 😊💖

With all my love,

Giselle

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Meet the author

Hi, beautiful! I’m Giselle.

I provide female entrepreneurs, like you, beautiful and soulful images and Canva templates that they can use in their personal brands. I also write resource tutorials and reviews to make your blogging life easier.