Around May last year, I discovered bookstagram (bookish Instagram) and was immediately enamoured. I joined not long after and have been obsessed since. It was the first of the online book community I became a part of, where I actually posted my own photos as opposed to reblogging other peoples photos on Tumblr. It’s been less than a year and I’m nearing 900 followers (thank you so much, you super amazing people). I’ve seen these types of posts going around lately so I thought I would do one, too since I absolutely adore bookstagram so I decided to share with you all how I bookstragram. This by no means a tutorial, this is just how I take and edit my photos!
The first thing I decided on was what I wanted my theme to be. A lot of people like their bookstagram accounts to have a theme so all the photos match and there’s a nice flow. I wasn’t too sure at the beginning how I wanted my account to look, and to be honest, I’m still not sure. I, personally, like to hold the book I’m about to start reading or a TBR pile or a haul or whatever it is in front of my bookcase and snap away.
Most of my photos, except for the ones at the beginning, are taken ain front of my shelves and I really like that. I like being able to see the way my shelves have changed over the last few months. I often struggle with my theme. I look at other accounts and think I want my feed to look like that, that’s how I’m going to take and edit my photos now, etc. I hate having this mindset. I love my theme as it is and I know my followers love it, too. I take my photos the way I take them and they’re nice in their own way!
Lights, Camera, Edit
Originally, I took my photos on my phone. I had an iPhone 5S when I started and I was pretty happy with how they were turning out. In the last couple of months I’ve decided that I want my photos to be better quality so I started using my DSLR camera. I use a Nikon D3200 to take photos, which I then transport to my laptop to go through. I always, always, always use natural light for my photos. I like to take my photos in the morning so I can have them posted at noon or mid-afternoon. When I have decided on at least two photos, I import them to my phone to begin editing.
I’ve tried a lot of editing apps during my time on Bookstagram, and I’ve also used a lot of different filters. I’ve used VSCO, Litely, PS Express and the filters on Instagram. At the moment, I currently use the app Aviary. It’s here I choose my filter and adjust the lighting, colour and sharpness.
I use the filter Indio in the Wanderlust section. My filter has changed a lot throughout my account because sometimes I prefer a crisp, bright look and sometimes I like the added enhancement certain filters provide.
This is something I still don’t do basically because I get super nervous about reaching out to people, even just on the Internet. But networking is such a good way to meet and connect with other Bookstagrammers! Commenting on a persons photo can go a long way. I know when someone comments on a photo of mine, it makes my day. I love knowing that people like seeing what I’m putting out there. The people on bookstagram are some of the best people and I urge you to connect with them! They’re there for the same reason you are: because you love books. Commenting on photos, tagging users for tags and just starting a conversation is the best way to make friends in this community and it’s something I’m trying to do more of now!
Captions and #Hashtags
I never used to make my captions lengthy because I didn’t want to annoy anyone who read them and I was also worried about writing lots for no one to read them. Now though, I try to make my captions a bit long.
I like to include the star rating I gave the previous book I read, mention any of my bookish news like blog posts, hauls and series I’m excited for or whatever it may be, and I often like to include a qotp (question of the post) to reach out to my followers!
Spread the Word
If I want people to see my account, a good way to do that is by posting about and sharing it on social media. I often like to tweet a photo of my feed if I’m nearing a new followers milestone and I have my feed in the sidebar of my blog. Using other social platforms to spread the word about your bookstagramming endeavours is a great way to get in touch with likeminded people.
I think this is pretty self explanatory. I try to post once a day, usually around mid-afternoon but often I end up posting every two days. I don’t want to post too much and flood peoples feeds but I also don’t want to post too little so people decide to unfollow me because I’m never posting.
Other Bits and Bobs:
x I like to check ghost followers, all new followers and followers I’ve lost, total amount of likes, my fame and acclaim value and other stats with the app Followers+. This app keeps track of my photos per week, my average likes per photo and other things and I love using it to just sort of check on my account.
x I prefer to keep my caption short. It includes my name, age, city/country, a short sentence about myself and my 2016 reading goal. I also have a link to my blog so my followers can check it out if they like.
There you have it, how I bookstagram! If you have a bookstagram accounts, comment your username below and I’ll be sure to check them out!