When it comes to blogging there are no barriers to entry. Anyone can buy a domain and start writing their thoughts on what they love, or despise or feel the need to share! There aren't too many costs involved to begin.
Initially I used to take photos on my phone when I blogged very sporadically, maybe once a month at the start. Gradually as I started falling in love with it and went to more events I realised that a lot of the bloggers I looked up to were using professional cameras to get really gorgeous images. It can sound naive but with most cameras starting at about €500 it's not likely you'll have one just hanging around.
As my blog got busier I knew it was time to invest. I made an initial mistake in following a recommendation, that was possibly an ad, and bought the Canon G1X Mark 2. It's a great camera but honestly it was too big to carry around and too heavy for vlogging. I had only looked at it online, not actively played with it in person. It didn't suit me or my needs at all. The settings were complex and as an inexperienced user I kept it in Auto most of the time.
I used it for about 2 years but given I am over halfway though my first year full-time blogging I felt it was time to invest in the right camera for me. I spent hours online and also popped into Currys PC World to get some honest facts from one of the camera experts there.
What are the most popular cameras for fashion bloggers and why?
The Canon EOS M3 has excellent video quality 1080p full HD, an excellent standard kit lens 18mm to 55mm, vary angle screen. You can change the lens which is really important and you can add an external microphone. It syncs with your phone over Wifi. The Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark 2 has a flip screen and is super compact so great on the move and for fashion week.
The Canon 200D is also a great option, small and light, great kit lens, very compact for a DSLR, it has a vari angle screen, touch screen, excellent video capabilities, option to change lenses, bespoke macro mode and others auto settings, eg landscape and portrait, great interactive guidance on the screen when selecting a mode.
For Vlogging what do you recommend, can one camera do it all?
Again the Powershot G7X M2 is the best to go for when vlogging. Top quality video capabilities and it fits in the palm of your hand so no messing with additional lenses. Any bridge cameras are useful, more powerful than compact cameras and no bulky lenses.
What are some settings and tips for food or close up beauty photography?
AV mode is ideal , higher aperture will keep things in focus, lower aperture will allow more control over what you want in focus or out of focus , this will give the blurred affect. Ideally use a tripod if possible and macro lens for close ups. G7x MII has a low lens aperture setting and a bespoke macro setting.
Do you need a separate lens for that blurred background in fashion photography?
Not necessarily. Higher end lenses will have a lower aperture setting but will be expensive.The blurred effect can be achieved on fixed lenses. For the blurred affect (shallow depth-of-field), set the camera to AV mode and change the aperture, for example f/1.8 on the G7x MII, which is a very low aperture for a fixed lens and which will blur out the background, subject will be in focus and sharp.
What did I choose?!
In the end the right camera for me was the one I was actually going to use. After learning more and handling all the options I really liked the G7 mainly because of the size and also the lack of complicated settings and too many buttons. I still admire those who can use big DSLR cameras and I know the image produced is superb. But I have made the right decision for me. The G7 is light and compact and I take it everywhere. Also without a big lens sticking out . Down the line issues like not being able to add a mic to it or change the lens will present themselves but I know for a quick photo shoot or a vlog this is the right camera for me.
If I can advise anyone anything it is to go into a camera store and hold and play around with the cameras and also think about what it is that you will be using it for. If you will be mainly just doing tutorials or shooting at home a bigger DSLR model might be easy but if you are out and about and want something smaller, keep the practical side of things in mind.
Having had a great camera I never used, versus having one I now always have in my bag, I know that downsizing was the right idea. I've a lot to learn but I think even just using it day-to-day will be so helpful!
I hope this was useful for you!
Images by Ollie Ali.