Do it for the 'Gram

Tips from a Local Lifestyle Influencer on How to Take Gorgeous Instagram Photos

A picture is definitely worth a thousand words. Telling our stories through curated images is a dominant aspect of today’s modern, digital world. I’ve been able to experience this firsthand.

I graduated from The Ohio State University with a journalism degree in 2010, but my first job was outside of the written realm. I needed a creative outlet to practice my craft, so the following year I founded my wellness and lifestyle blog, Happy Wife Healthy Life.

The decision to share my life online led to unique opportunities, including a number of freelance writing gigs, paid partnerships with brands, a business with Beautycounter and a full-time online career. My Instagram account now serves as one of my main business channels.

Speaking of Instagram, you’ve probably noticed that bloggers and influencers take really beautiful, eye-catching photos to share there. These scroll-stopping images are what initially draw in more “likes” and followers; however, these photos aren’t necessarily as complex or difficult to take as you may think! My photos are simply taken with an iPhone. When I am in a picture, either I use a phone stand or my husband takes the pictures for me. (He’s always supportive and a good sport.)

I’ve included the following tips for anyone wanting to create beautiful images for social media and blog use, or for those who simply want to take better pictures for their own personal use. I am completely self-taught, always learning as I go. If I can do it, so can you. Happy snapping!

Jana Antil is the founder of the blog Happy Wife Healthy Life (www.HappyWifeHealthyLife.com). She lives in Springboro, with her husband and their two children. You can follow her on Instagram at @jana.antil.


When scrolling social media, what stops you in your tracks? What makes you connect and engage? Take inventory of your favorite accounts. What is it that draws you in? Use as inspiration for creating your own unique brand and images.



Eliminate clutter or busy props. Simplicity often makes for the best image! Shoot in natural light, when possible. Morning and evening create a softer glow, and midday sun can be more harsh. Play with angles, such as shooting from above.



Lightroom is a free app for editing images. Adjust light, color and details simply. For a cohesive feed, consider investing in “presets,” which are uploaded to Lightroom and can be purchased for a small fee. It makes creative editing easy.



Everyone has to start somewhere. Be confident as a beginner, and stay open to learning and growing through trial and error. Whether your social media is for business or personal use, make it fun and creative!

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