How to take photos that stand out from the crowd

Above: Souks of Marrakech, Canon 5DMK11, 105mm @1/15th sec ISO 100
Above: Souks of Marrakech, Canon 5DMK11, 105mm @1/15th sec ISO 100

I just read a frightening statistic. There are approximately 1.8 billion images shared on social media every day. If you take out the 4 million selfies uploaded by the Kardashians, that still leaves a staggering 1.4 billion images. In 2008 this figure was around 3 million.

So, with so many photos being uploaded every second, how the hell does a photographer get their work noticed these days? Before you start freaking out, open a fresh jar of Nutella and curl up on the couch to binge watch One Tree Hill – let’s break this down.

By the law of averages, of the 1.8 billion images uploaded, 50% are mostly bad photos that Jan from accounts took of her lunch at Sizzlers, guys posing in front of their cars for their latest Tinder profile pic, pets wearing sunglasses and out of focus images of babies.

Of the remaining 50%, selfies make up at least 30% of images uploaded to the internet each day. So that leaves 20% or roughly 36 million photos posted each day. That’s still a staggering figure and quite discouraging for many new photographers wanting to get their work noticed online.

So, how do you create images that stand out in such a crowded space? Here are my five favourite tips:

1. What’s your point of difference?

The thing that sets your work apart from all the other photographers is your unique vision. The way you see and interpret the world is your point of difference. Photograph subjects that are meaningful to you. Process your work in a style that resonates with you. Share your unique voice.

2. Become an expert in your field.

Let’s say you are a headshot photographer wanting to get noticed. You could blog about the following:

  • the best colours to wear for headshots.
  • the best hair and makeup tips for headshots.
  • things to bring on the day of the shoot.
  • how to look good in headshots.
  • the best locations in your city for headshots.

This is a great way to add value to what you do, plus blogs that are read and shared improve your SEO. The more people that click on your site, the higher up you rank in Google searches.

3. Blog consistently.

Yes there are a gazillion blogs launched everyday, but most people who start blogs give up after the first few. The trick is to be consistent. The effect is gradual, like working out everyday. At first you don’t notice the impact your daily, weekly, fortnightly or monthly blog is having and then BANG – you have a six pack!

4. The extra 5%.

The difference between good and great images is that extra 5%. It’s all the little details that are often overlooked that add up to make a great image. These include:

  • lighting
  • posing
  • post production
  • composition

There is no quick fix to getting your work noticed. It’s a gradual process, but following the above advice consistently will definitely help. Is there anything I’ve missed? What techniques have you tried to get your work noticed? I’d love to hear about it!

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