Professional photographers and hobbyists keep publishing their work on photography websites in stunning looking galleries. I wish they could share how they produced such a great photograph. I’d like to know more about them, their workflow, and challenges they faced while learning and advancing their photography. To my surprise, hardly one percent of photographers write about their work through a detailed photography blog post.
Let me, through this post, try to help non-blogging photographers to open-up, share about their work, and help the beginners and amateur photography community advance its skills.
Why photographers don’t write detailed blog post?
Like any other professionals, we, the photographers, are busy with crazy schedules of photography sessions, editing, planning etc. Honestly, you need to find time to blog because it’s integral part of your storytelling and helps you increase your reach and influence. Let’s first understand key resistances that photographers encounter with.
Too busy to write
No doubt, photography is a time-consuming business. Planning for the photo shoots, going to the venue, shooting, editing, and handling clients are so time consuming that where do you have time to write a story!
English is not good
Many non-native English speakers argue that they’re not good at English writing. Well, even native English speakers struggle to write blogs because they feel they don’t have good grammar and capability to structure sentences to make writing lucid. Hence, you’re in the level playing field if you’re a non-native English speaker.
Nobody reads blogs
People don’t have time to read blogs. Learners are bugged with myriad contents that reading is the last thing a photography student think of. They don’t have patience to read through blogs, articles or books.
Don’t know SEO
Even if I write a blog I can’t compete with seasoned bloggers who’ve great websites, do keyword research, and post SEO friendly photography blogs. If my blog won’t show-up in first page of Google search, nobody is going to reach to the post.
Heard you! Here’s my response to the apprehensions, before I share how you can write a SEO friendly detailed photography blog.
Blogging is therapy
There are many tools providing flexibility in writing. You don’t necessarily sit for hours writing a five hundred words blog post. I completed first draft of this post on my smartphone in 30 minutes. The writing process is so refreshing and therapeutic that I can’t stop writing more once my ideas start streaming. There are tools available which can convert you verbal words into text. You can give it a try, in case you don’t feel comfortable typing.
Communication is importanter than English
If your English is good enough that you reached till this section of my post, you can very well write a similar length of post also. For non-native speakers, the English is not required beyond what you’ve studied till high school. To motivate you further, I’m also a non-native speaker. I’ve limited vocabulary and capability to form complex sentences. Hence, I keep my blogs simple and conversational.
A photography niche won’t need to sweat over SEO
Based on my technology knowledge, SEO is not a thing that you need to ponder a lot. Launch your website in WordPress or any other CMS (Content Management System), keep your pages simple and lightweight, and keep writing. Secondly, you don’t need to do tons of keyword research in photography because you’re already writing niche. For example, whatever you write about a bride’s portraiture will already be richly stuffed with keywords like portrait photography, bridal portraiture, wedding photography etc.
Alright, with your apprehensions handled, let’s now dive into simple steps of producing great contents.
A photography blog post has two parts:
You’re already have 50% of the content – your own stunning photographs. Let’s talk about rest of the 50% of the content. The textual content. The story.
What would you blog about?
You’ve no idea that you’ve a wealth of information worth sharing that many people are dying to read. Here’s a list of few topics, among many more, you can talk about:
How you got into photography
Are you a self-taught or learned in an Institute
Talk about your gears and lenses
Write reviews about gears, glasses, tripods, light equipments, editing softwares etc
Share your editing workflow
If you’re a wedding or any other niche photographer, talk about specific challenges and how you handle them
Let people know about your personal photography projects
How was your last photo tour or studio photography session
You see! There are no limitations of what you can write about. You can easily churn out 100s of blog titles today and, as you start writing, you’ll churn out 1000s of topics worth sharing.
End-to-end blog post workflow
Let’s keep it simple. All you need to do is share your story. Keep the style conversational, as-if you’re sharing your experience with one of your friends. To make it a little more structured, let’s break your blogging workflow into six simple steps:
1. Generate a new blog idea
I’ve shared above the illustrative topics you can talk about in your photography stories. Creatively, you can repurpose those topics to churn your own stories. Write a title of the post to start with – the title can change as you finish the first draft. The title will pave you the way of what you’re going to talk about.
2. Finish first ugly draft quickly
As Aristotle once said: well begun is half done. You already have an idea by now which you want to share. Pour all your thoughts in the form of text. Start typing. Think from your fingers. Don’t care about grammar, spelling, and whether you’re making sense. Keep the spell-check off if that’s distracting you in writing. Keep typing profusely.
3. Review the post for structure
First level review I do is to see whether whatever I’ve written is structurally making sense and whether the narrative is good enough. I’d add couple of more lines here and there to make the flow lucid in this step of the review process. At this moment, you’ll only care about coverage and flow in the story.
4. Review the post for spellings and grammar
There are many tools which suggest you for spelling and grammar errors. Microsoft Word does a good job of spell check. Few bloggers and article writers use Grammarly for correctness of sentences and phrases. Leverage these tools or trust your own high school education to inspect the text carefully for any errors.
5. Shortlist pictures from your amazing shots
Phew! This is the easiest step for photographers. While writing you’d know which pictures will contribute to the story beautifully. Don’t insert too many images. Images can distract readers. I keep 2-3 images in a post. If the story demands to add the whole series, I’ll add up to 6-7 images. If you add more images, it makes the page heavy and slows down when a reader tries to reach your post. Lastly, keep the image size small 100-200 kb to keep the page lightweight.
6. Publish the post
WordPress or any other Website will support you to add title, body of the article, images, category and tags. Navigation is pretty simple. Before hitting publish button, check it’s preview whether the blog is looking on the page properly.
There are few optional steps you can follow, depending on how deep you want to go in blogging and how much you care about the high-quality content.
1. Hire an editor for reviewing your text
If it’s a blog, I don’t prefer hiring an editor for couple of reasons:
(i) Lead time from thinking to publishing the blog post increases
(ii) It’s a costly affair to hire an editor for every single blog post
I’ve taken editor’s help in my books though. With experience and their style of review, I can make out the potential errors in my texts.
2. Share it with community through your social media handles
Even if you want to share it on your various social media handles – Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter – it won’t take too long. I keep this purely optional and don’t spam my friends with my posts.
That’s it! We’ll not bother about submitting the post to search engines manually or monitoring the traffic on the post at this moment. Trust Google and other search engines to index your keyword rich niche blog post – you’ll get readers automatically.
Conclusion Photography community wants to learn from your experience and new perspective you bring to your photography. Write a photography blogpost effortlessly to influence fellow photographers and become an authority in the field.