You’ve successfully grown veggies in your garden and it’s time to harvest and enjoy the fruits of your labour. This is something to celebrate! You’ve filled a basket full of your hard earned garden goodies but if you don’t take a harvest photo for Instagram, did you really grow those vegetables? (Yes, yes you did!) Whether you’re searching to improve the quality of your garden-based photos or desiring more engagement and likes, here’s a list of gardenstead’s do’s and don’ts catered specifically to improving your harvest photography skills.
1. DON’T take a photo at high noon
You might be thinking… but it’s so nice and bright out during that time. Yes it is but this isn’t light that is favourable for photography. When the sun is high in the sky, its light is harsh. It isn’t even best practice to harvest your vegetables in the middle of the day (the plant gets stressed!) but it’s not a great time to capture a good photo during this time either. Avoid mid-day photos on a sunny day.
2. DO take photos in the early morning or early evening
If you’re familiar with the “Golden Hour,” you may know that it happens during early evening when the light is still bright but soft. This is when the sun is closer to the horizon and makes your photographic subject matter glow. Like magic! Including vegetables! Take your photos in the morning or in the early evening.
3. DON’T use a filter!
It might be tempting to slap on a fancy photo-altering filter but a filter can lower the quality of your photo. If you followed our second tip, good light is all you need to take a clear, bright and crisp photo. Your most recent selfie might look better with a fuzzy glossy filter with bunny ears but your vegetables will look better without.
4. DO Play around with the editing tools
Instead of masking the photo with a filter, do enhance it’s color and vibrancy using the Instagram editing tools. Play around with the brightness, contrast, saturation (not too much!), highlights and shadows and sharpen scales to find your signature look.
5. DON’T use the same harvest vessel for all of your photos
That’s just boring! Add diversity and depth to your overall feed by including harvest vessels with different textures, weights and color. Tomatoes look sexy in blue glass bowls and shallow wooden baskets make any vegetable look desirable. Get creative. What do you have laying around your house?
6. DO photograph your vegetables in different states
Carrots are a great example of this. They look amazing when scrubbed clean but also when they’re dirty straight from the ground. If you photographed them squeaky clean the last time, photograph them dirty the next time.
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Seven points to note for growing carrots successfully: 1. Carrots are lazy. They’re looking for soft soil in which to grow straight and strong 2. Carrots must be grown from seed 3. After they’re seeded, don’t move them (plant the seed where it is going to grow for the WHOLE season - no transplanting!) 4. Don’t let the soil dry out during the germination stage 5. Thinning them out is important! 6. Patience is a virtue – carrots can be slowwwwwww 7. Grow carrots in spring and fall – they taste better when they’ve been slightly chilled
7. DO showcase blemishes
Vegetables shouldn’t be perfect. Gardening is a continuous experiment so don’t be afraid to showcase a blemish or two. Ugly vegetables are engaging!
8. DO take numerous photos
Give yourself a variety of photos to choose from. Taking a bunch of photos might feel redundant but you won’t regret it. Slightly changing your angle can greatly alter the feel of the photo. Give yourself options to select from.
9. DON’T be dishonest
Take photos of your own harvest, whatever size it may be! Size doesn’t matter anyways. Keep the integrity of gardening in mind and be truthful about what you share.
A few other considerations to keep in mind
- Pay attention to detail. Is there one single weed poking into the frame on the top left? Perhaps it adds depth and character to the photo, or it might distract your viewer from your beautiful hard earned harvest. Take a few with it, and a few without it then use your judgement to decide what’s best. It’s time-consuming to set up a harvest photo, so you wouldn’t want to have to do it all over again if you notice something in the corner of your shot when you go to post it.
- Consider taking separate photos of the vegetables as well as the harvest as a whole. This can extend your content and give you options for a few days when nothing is ready to harvest or even during #tbt.
There’s nothing to it but to do it, get outside, grow and document your harvests!