5 Simple Social Media Lighting Tips

The perfect picture is all about the perfect lighting.

Follow these simple social media lighting tips and you will immediately stand out in the feeds of your followers!

1. Find Your Light And Face It!

Unless you’re trying to create moody shadows or silhouettes, it’s always best to face your light source.

Backlighting is one of the most common mistakes novices make. Backlighting happens when you take a picture with your light source behind you (i.e. in front of a window or sunset).

Before setting up your next shot, pay attention to where most of the light is coming from and face it!

2. Use Natural Light (a.k.a The Sun)

Natural lighting is the easiest way to get bright and balanced exposure on your images.

Flashes can flatten out your images and make them seem more contrived.

You can also diffuse your light naturally by standing in the shade. Natural light is your best friend, but sometimes it can be too harsh. Shade is a natural diffuser and will help to soften your images when the sun is too bright.

3. Get A Portable Light

In cases when you want more control over your light source, you can use a portable light.

Portable lights are great to use for occasions when natural light is dimmer or none-existent (i.e. concerts or restaurants at night.)

A portable ring-light or other LED is a great thing to keep in your social media prop box.  

4. That Golden Hour!

The golden hour is nature’s Instagram filter. This is the time of day when the sun is low in the sky, golden and perfectly diffused for a soft, flattering effect (i.e. dusk & dawn).

The golden hour is typically known to be the first and last hour of sunlight in your timezone.

Check out The Golden Hour Calculator to plan your next outdoor photoshoot or selfie!

5. Underexpose & Fix It In Post

It’s always better to take an underexposed image than an overexposed one. This is because you can brighten up your images in post production, but there is really nothing you can do to fix an overexposure.

So if the lighting in a particular setting isn’t the best, don’t sweat it, just take the image with as much natural light as you can. Then use in-app tools or your favourite editing program to quickly brighten up your image.  

Chances are, if you’ve ever seen an image on social media that you absolutely loved, it was because the lighting was just right.

Finding your perfect light takes patience, common sense and a bit of luck, but hopefully with these tips in mind, you now know where to begin!

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