There have been a few requests for me to write a post on how to nail #SockSunday photos on bookstagram, and I actually think that’s pretty funny since I’m really not all that good at it! Most of my #SockSunday pictures are inspired by me ogling over veterans’ who can take pictures of their legs, their feet, or put any part of themselves into a picture and make it look gorgeous. I’m not nearly as talented, but here’s how I currently take my #SockSunday pictures!
Fair warning, I’ve provided a lot of visuals for this post because I figured it might help, but I’ve scaled the size of them down to make it easier to read.
Step 1) Set Up
Okay, so assuming your lighting is good, setting up is probably the easiest part of #SockSunday pictures because you get to pick your favourite socks and lay down all your props! And honestly, you don’t need or want too many books or props crowding your legs because it needs to make it into the shot. Plus, unlike most of my super cluttered flat lays, #SockSundays can actually be fairly minimal in aesthetic.
That being said, if you’re using props like a cup of coffee or a candle, I advise you to set up on the floor with a blanket (or a few) as your background if at all possible. I’ve spilt my coffee on my bed before trying to take one of these pictures! Imagine a mishap with a candle. Who knew #SockSundays could be so dangerous, right?
Okay, so you’ve got your set up all in place, your socks are on. Now what?
Step 2) Posing and Determining the Picture Angle
Like any flat lay, one of the annoying parts is deciding what way the props will face and how the picture will be angled. If you take a look at my #SockSunday pictures, you’ll probably notice my legs are usually on an off-angle in the picture; I don’t often like all my #SockSundays to be the same straight-legged picture. How do you achieve the angle? Well I’ll talk more about that in the next step, but for now let’s talk posing.
Honestly, you can pose your legs and feet any way you want to. You can leave them straight, you can prop up a knee, you can sit cross-legged, or even cross one leg and stretch out the other. If you can make the pose you can take the pose! Obviously, because I’m a crazy neurotic perfectionist, I tend to keep with straighter legs, slightly pressed together. Now this looks pretty and natural in photos but trust me, when you’re taking a picture while holding your legs at a weird pressed together angle like the ones I do, it’s not really very comfortable all time!
Anyway, my one piece of advice for posing is to point your feet. This comes pretty easily to me because I used to dance, but it is something you might want to consider just to show off the socks more and to give your legs that elegant look. You don’t need to point hard or anything! Just a teeny bit.
Step 3) Take the Picture
So I said posing was annoying, but it’s the picture taking that can make #SockSunday shoots go on for a long time. Normally I take my book pictures with my Canon 60D, but it’s way too big to raise over my head and pose while holding steady at the same time, so I use my phone camera instead. In fact, I use the Instagram app to take the picture. Most people say that the Instagram app takes photos of a lesser quality, but honestly? Most phones do compared to a DSLR, so don’t worry about it. The reason why I use the Instagram camera is because it takes square photos and has a clear picture taking button, which my normal phone camera doesn’t do (the Moto X Play camera is a touch anywhere on the screen and the picture takes kind of camera).
Ready to take pictures? First take a tester shot, because I can guarantee you it’ll be crap! Especially if you’re like me and you raise the phone above your head and you can’t see what you’re taking at all. But from there, you can choose how you might want to angle your phone or shift the pose of your legs, or even your props in order to get the shot you want.
Changing your camera angle is actually pretty easy. With my phone already perpendicular to the ground, I just move my phone so that the bottom of it is a little to the side rather than facing me. That’s the little secret behind off-angles without having to move!
But if you’re planning on flipping the photo or changing the angle drastically, think about which way your books are facing, too. You don’t want a perfect picture and then your cover to be upside down or hard to read!
The part that takes a lot of time is taking pictures that aren’t blurry and are perfectly angled all at the same time. Or maybe I just have really unsteady hands, that’s possible, too. I can take 50 photos easily and only 1 will look good. Though, I’m pretty picky about the quality and angle of my pictures. If you’re happy with what you take in a few pictures, go with it! Just remember to hold your camera as steady as possible.
And voila! You’re done!
Here are a few I’ve taken over the past few months to help with inspiration! Let me know if you think the pictures are too small and would like to see them larger.